A Few More Things You Should Know About Duck Dynasty

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Joe Carter at The Gospel Coalition Voices blog gave us “9 Things You Should Know about Duck Dynasty.” Those nine things are pretty interesting and are far from the norm for a reality TV show. What other show has men with three foot beards wearing bandanas?

Admittedly, I have never seen the show since I don’t have cable. I have seen clips and plenty of praise for the show on Facebook and twitter. The stars of the show seem pretty cool in a redneck sorta way. As best I can tell they are more down to earth than their appearance would lead you to believe.

All of the buzz about this TV family is not from the beards or duck calls, but as Carter deems them, they are “reality television’s most gospel-centric family.”

I thought – Man! Now they’re even cooler…until I found out what they believe about the gospel.

The Duck Dynasty folks are part of the White’s Ferry Road Church of Christ. This Church of Christ denomination holds that baptism is essential for salvation. Yes, essential. That means the gospel + baptism saves.

I know some may find this hard to believe and I was sad when I stumbled upon this information. I’m willing to be corrected and I hope I am wrong, but from what will is presented below, I fear I am right.

I didn’t even realize this, but my friend, Josh Buice, posted The Duck Dynasty Gospel back on Dec 11, 2012. I called Josh on the way home to discuss his post. His brief examination brought him to the same conclusion that the Duck Dynasty gospel is one that includes essential baptism. The videos Josh posted show the DD guys preaching and though it’s subtle, each example given about someone being saved includes an immediate baptism.

But what about a clear statement of the gospel + baptism for salvation?

The Christian Chronical has an article on the church titled, “White’s Ferry Road: A church of small groups.” The article lists the ministries of White’s Ferry Road. One of those ministries is We Care Ministries which is lead by “Director Larry West, who has 30 years of experience.” In case anyone wonder whether or not the church and ministry are still connected, White’s Ferry and We Care have the same address in West Monroe, LA.

White’s Ferry Road offers a short video – the Gospel Movie – in which baptism is mentioned. The video does not go in depth so it is difficult to draw a conclusion of where they stand on baptism from this presentation.

However, Larry West has a video on the We Care Ministries website called “Step Into The Water, Is Baptism Essential?” West is very clear that baptism is essential for salvation. Toward the end of the video West disregards the sinner’s prayer and then explains that one is not saved until baptism. He also claims that baptism is not for the saved, but for the lost. Don’t take my word for it; watch for yourself.

We Care Ministries also has a gospel presentation called,”Focusing on being saved only in the blood of Jesus” which I will quote below. Note how one of the points in the presentation goes directly against one who professes faith alone for salvation.

At the end of the WCM Gospel Presentation, drawing it to a close, often the fundamentalist will say something like, “But I have already been baptized” or “I’ve already done that!” Refer back to your detailed interview, reminding him of his own story. Remind him he said (pick one),

1. “I don’t remember why I was baptized. I just did what I was told to do.”
2. “I was baptized to join my church.”
3. “I was baptized to show I had been saved.”
4. The most common are, “I am already a Christian,” and “I am already saved; I was saved when I believed in Jesus.”
5. We have been told even, “I was baptized for permission to marry my wife.”

If any one of these responses is the case, the following is good to do:

Dialog

Soul Winner (SW): “Do you remember that you told me in your own words, “I was saved that night during the prayer (referring to the “Sinner’s Prayer)?”

Prospect (P): Yes.

SW: “… and that you told me it occurred (at a certain time) and then you were baptized the next Sunday?”

P: “Yes.”

SW: “May I kindly ask,’Can a person be saved outside the blood of Jesus?’”
“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Eph. 1:7)

Prospect (P): “Why, no.”

SW: In “The Gospel Enacted” point to the cross and ask, “When was the blood of Jesus shed?”
“But when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out.” (John 19:33-34)

P: “In His death.”

SW: “That’s right. Now, according to the Bible (pointing to Romans 6:3) when do we get into the death of Jesus where the blood washed? Please read this.”

P: “Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?” (Romans 6:3)

SW: “So, it’s into the water, into the death, into the blood of Jesus! Is that correct?”

P: “Yes.”

SW: “So, according to the Bible, our sins must be in the presence of the blood of Jesus for the blood to affect them, or to cancel them! Correct?”

P: “Yes.”

SW: “So, should we bring our sins to the crucified Savior?”
(Support verse for possible backup: “And baptism, which this prefigured, now saves you–not as a removal of dirt from the body, but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, (all the way through the Gospel),” (I Peter 3:21 NRSV)

I mean, isn’t it apparent those sins must be present for the blood to do the cleansing?”
(Support verse for possible backup: “And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.” (Hebrews 9:22)

P: “Yes.”

SW: “So, how could you have been saved on that front seat in that prayer still outside the blood of Jesus?”

P: “I couldn’t!”

SW: “You told me you
(pick one)
1. “Didn’t know why you were baptized,” or
2. “Were baptized to join a church,” or
3. “Were baptized to show you had already been saved.”
So, again, can a person be saved outside the blood of Jesus?”

P: “No! I need to be baptized again, don’t I?”

SW: “Well, that is only for you to decide! I am only a teacher of the Gospel. I would recommend, however, that let’s go back to the water, and you (point to the top of the first arrow, draw a stick figure, write the word “sin”) consciously take your sins down into the death of Jesus (point with pen downward to the bottom of the arrow and then to the cross), where the blood was shed.” (Write the word “blood” there; then write the word “sin” there.) Then to make your salvation sure, you can know you have taken your sins to the crucified Savior, Jesus, so that His blood can do its work. Wouldn’t you want to obey the Gospel so that you can go to Heaven?”

Keep silent, and don’t break silence. Don’t comfort until the person answers each question.

SW: You’ve been baptized, but have you obeyed “The Gospel” (2 Tess 1:7-9).

SW: Go back and “Ask the question?”

SW: Again, may I ask, would you please read Acts 22: 16 and give God your response?”

My goal is not to upset anyone, but the gospel is too important not to share this information. I could be wrong and White’s Ferry and the Robertson family might believe differently than those they are affiliated with including one of their own ministers, Larry West.

I am also not trying to get people to stop watching the show, but Christians who promote the show as gospel-centered may want to pause and re-think that position given the above information. I think the guys are cool and I truly hope they are not holding onto their belief in the gospel + baptism for their salvation.

If you have any additional and/or corrective information, please share below!

For the Kingdom…

Mark

P.S. White’s Ferry Road Church of Christ is listed on two Church of Christ websites. One site answers the question “WHY DO YOU EMPHASIZE BAPTISM SO MUCH?” The other site, under “A Call for New Testament Christianity” provides doctrinal statements including the baptism saves.

P.P.S. Larry West, the director We Care Ministries, is the father of Duck Dynasty star Missy Robertson, the wife of Jase Robertson.



{ 354 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Theodore A Jones March 18, 2013 at 9:58 pm

“For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.” Rom. 2:13 I would guess that Paul’s statement is more of an absurdity to you than “gospel+baptism for salvation”?

2 Becca March 18, 2013 at 11:06 pm

Wow, we Christians really do like to tear each other down, don’t we?
While I don’t believe salvation is found through baptism, I sure don’t think that is a reason to call them unChristian. From what I can see (on the show and off) the Robertsons live out their faith.
Must we tear down everyone who doesn’t believe EXACTLY as we do?

3 Chris Roberts March 19, 2013 at 12:24 am

Theodore,

In Romans Paul builds a progressive argument. Romans 2:13, saying only those who obey the law will be declared righteous, is followed by Romans 3:9-18 which makes clear that no one obeys the law, no one is declared righteous on the basis of his own obedience. 2:13 gives the standard that must be followed if I am to be found righteous through my work; 3:9-18 shows that no one meets the standard. Then we have the glorious words in 3:21 that “the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law” – righteousness credited to us by faith in Jesus, righteousness based on his obedience, Jesus doing what I could not do.Then verse 28 shows that “one is justified by faith apart from works of the law.” On and on Paul goes in Romans to demonstrate righteousness credited to us by faith, not by perfect obedience to the law (which is something none of us can do).

So, no, nothing at all absurd in Romans 2:13. On the other hand, the idea that I add to my salvation by my work of baptism is something of an absurdity when the whole of the New Testament speaks against the notion.

4 cb scott March 19, 2013 at 5:03 am

Brave post, Mark. And graciously done. Thank you for a timely stand.

Our salvation is in Christ and Christ alone.

5 Jon March 19, 2013 at 6:16 am

I’ve watched a lot of the shows and seen a few interviews of the Robertson family. Until someone else pointed out they were Church of Christ I never knew it. Some if they do believe a person needs to be baptized to be saved, it doesn’t seem to be something they talk about. What they do talk about is Jesus. I have family who are Church of Christ and they certainly don’t believe a person has to be baptized to be saved. Lifeway recently put out a video of Phil sharing his testimony, and though I may have missed it, I down remember him saying anything about being saved by his baptism.

6 Jon March 19, 2013 at 6:18 am

So I seem to be having trouble typing this morning. The third sentence should say, “So if they do believe… and the last one, “I don’t remember.

7 Diane Neal March 19, 2013 at 6:56 am

I don’t believe that baptism is necessary for salvation but I don’t think that holding this view negates your salvation either. The church has long divided over the method and timing of baptism. You said yourself you have never watched the show so how can you determine that what they say and do adequately or correctly reflects the gospel? I am not a regular view but it is obvious in the few episodes I have seen that their faith is at the center of their lives and they teach their children to walk with Christ. I know that Jesus was speaking to the Jews but I think it also applies to us as Christians who are quick to decide another’s salvation without knowing them. In John 10:16 Jesus said, “I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one Shepherd.” I long for the day when Christians will no longer attack each other and make judgments about another’s salvation because we will be at home with the Good Shepherd! His love crosses denominations and there will be many “folds” represented.

8 Mark March 19, 2013 at 9:45 am

Becca, would you please tell me how what I wrote is tearing someone down? Did you read the gospel dialogue I posted which is from one of White’s Ferry church’s ministries? According to that dialogue, I would need to be baptized again because my statement that “I was saved when I believed in Jesus” would not be enough. The conclusion is, therefore, that my position is unChristian in their eyes as I discern their position.

Mormons are “good” people too and live out their faith, but that cannot be the basis on which one’s gospel is received. Does that make sense?

9 Mark March 19, 2013 at 9:47 am

Chris, thanks for answering Jones. I think he trolls around pushing a sort of works-based salvation. I know he’s been on Jared’s site too.

10 Mark March 19, 2013 at 9:49 am

CB Scott, your words mean a lot. I appreciate you stopping by. My wife read my post to make sure I was gracious. She is brutally honest because she loves me. I passed her test, too.

11 Mark March 19, 2013 at 10:36 am

Jon, it has been long known that the Church of Christ denominations teach that salvation is essential for baptism. I believe there have been changes over the years, but take a look at the links I provided in my P.S. Have you checked the website’s of the church’s your relatives are part of for their doctrine on baptism?

As I understand it, the CoC folks don’t always explicitly mention baptism because it is assumed that baptism is simply part of following Christ in order to be born again. They can still preach grace, but we must understand what is being said. For example, look at the following quote from the CoC site answering the question: How does one become a member of the church of Christ?

In the salvation of man’s soul there are 2 necessary parts: God’s part and man’s part. God’s part is the big part, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift if God; not of works, that no man should glory” (Ephesians 2:8-9). The love which God felt for man led him to send Christ into the world to redeem man. The life and teaching of Jesus, the sacrifice on the cross, and the proclaiming of the gospel to men constitute God’s part in salvation.

Though God’s part is the big part, man’s part is also necessary if man is to reach heaven. Man must comply with the conditions of pardon which the Lord has announced. Man’s part can clearly set forth in the following steps:

See how the grace through faith is included, but it’s not enough as the article continues stating what one must do to be saved. Here are the abbreviated steps in order: “Hear the Gospel, Believe, Repent of past sins, Confess Jesus as Lord, Be baptized for the remission of sins, Live a Christian life”

The last two sounds like they are adding works to the gospel of grace.

I watched the LifeWay video and I doubt LifeWay would have continued with the video had Robertson mentioned the baptism as essential. Again, baptism is part of following Christ from their perspective. The video does not go into many details. There is a video with Willie Robertson explaining how he lead a very rich hall of famer to faith. It’s subtle, but Willie explains how he baptized this man that very night. In the video below Robertson does talk about baptism toward the end.

At around 3 minute mark in the video below Robertson says, “He and his buddy both, they balled. They cried on my living room floor. I took them down to the river and I baptized them in the river.” Again, considering the material I posted above and how they seem to immediately baptize people, baptism for them seems to be just like a profession of faith alone in salvation.

12 Mark March 19, 2013 at 10:50 am

Diane, my friend, thanks for stopping by. I’m not sure how watching the show negates the clear evidence of what their own ministry partner teaches about baptism and salvation.
If they adhere to the Church of Christ site about salvation in my above comments then it makes perfect sense that they teach their children to walk (morally?) with Christ since that is part of salvation. Either way, Mormons life the same way and even the bigamist Sister Wive’s show had them living out their faith. For arguments sake, they were decent people.

You’re the second person to use the word attack. Please, tell me explicitly how I attacked anyone? Are you upset that a White’s Ferry ministry is putting out material expressing that one is not saved by faith alone?

I don’t know ultimately whether or not baptism being necessary for salvation negates one’s salvation, but I would not preach it, teach it or bank my eternity on it. It is also very clear from the material I posted that one of their ministries teaches you are not saved unless you are baptized. So they are arguing directly against the grace you are offering in your opinion of their views.

What do you think John 10:16 means and how it is applicable to this situation? Is Paul’s anathema warning against those who preach another gospel negated by John 10:16?

13 Diane Neal March 19, 2013 at 1:32 pm

I see that both of us who used the term “attack” were women. Not sure what that means but I do find it interesting. I’ll have to think about it. The reason I said that is because anytime you call a person’s salvation into question over reasons that are not about who they believe Christ to be or what He did on the cross being te means to salvation, I think it is an attack to a brother or sister. You mentioned Mormonism and the Sister Wives living out their faith and living morally. That is a totally different situation. First of all, you are not living morally if you live as a bigamist. Secondly, what the Mormons believe about Jesus is vastly different from Scripture. That is very different from views on baptism. John Calvin, Augustine and scores of other people that are considered church fathers believed in infant baptism which I believe to be every bit as wrong as the idea that you must be baptized to be saved. Yet I don’t see you questioning whether or not they are saved. The reason I said what I did about you not having watched the show is that you don’t know anything other than their beliefs about baptism. I think there are going to be people with all sorts of views of baptism and many other theological things that are secondary and tertiary and that we need to be very careful who we decide is saved. When I read the passage in John, I see Jesus talking to people who thought they had a monopoly on what it meant to follow God. Jesus was letting them know that He is the only one who knows His sheep.

14 evanrkirby March 19, 2013 at 1:49 pm

As a member of the church of Christ, I feel it necessary to respond to this. My understanding of scripture is that Baptism is in no way a work of human merit. In fact, of all the commands that God gives, it is the most passive. You are not really doing anything, someone else is doing it to you (i.e. you don’t baptize yourself, someone else baptizes you). Baptism is the most submissive and unmeritorious act that I know of. People don’t brag, “I got dunked under water yesterday! Nah nah nah boo boo!” Also, I would need to respond that your claim that we believe “gospel + baptism = salvation” is fallacious. Baptism is not separate and apart from the gospel. It is a picture of the gospel. 1 Cor. 15:1-4: 1 Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures. Paul declared to them the gospel and explained that the gospel was the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. If you look at Romans 6:1-4 baptism is pictured as our personal imitation of the gospel or death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. To believe in the gospel is to live it! Also, I would say that our definitions of faith are different. From what I understand (i may be wrong and if I am please forgive me, this is just my understanding of what you believe) you believe faith is basically mental ascent (i.e. I accept in my mind that Christ did exist, died for me and wants to save me). I would say that included within faith is obedience (not meritorious works for salvation, just simply submission to my Master because He said so). Hebrews 11:6: But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Included within faith is diligently seeking Him. Think about it. Noah certainly believed that God would send a flood, but he wasn’t saved until he built the ark. But the Hebrews writer still says that Noah was saved “by faith” even though an action was included. So we come to 1 Peter 3:20-21 where Peter compares the salvation of Noah in the ark on the water to the salvation that comes with believers in God who submissively put their faith in God to save them. He says this is done through baptism (vs 21). The ESV translates 1 Peter 3:21 this way, “Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,” Baptism is literally an appeal to God for a good conscience. It is a calling out to God to save me. It is faith. So, when Ananias tells Saul “And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.” he is actually saying that baptism is the Divinely ordered medium through which I call on the name of the Lord. It is my crying out to God to save me. I think if you talked to most members of the church of Christ (I say most instead of all because there are some of my faith who really do believe in works salvation) they would tell you that they weren’t baptized to save themselves, they were baptized so God would save them.

I am not trying to start an argument. I don’t want to be quarrelsome. I just thought you might like to hear an actual member of the church of Christ’s response.

15 Mark March 19, 2013 at 3:01 pm

Diane, do you not see that the gospel dialogue I posted could be labeled an attack against those who hold to faith alone? Plus, I did not condemn anyone to hell. And we’re not talking about church fathers. Based on the information I’ve read and posted about White’s Ferry Church of Christ, baptism is not a tertiary issue for them which is what the disagreement is all about. Is any critical evaluation of the beliefs of anyone who claims Christ allowed anymore?

I don’t want to talk past each other so I will try to be careful and clear.

Scripturally, I ask you to re-consider your thinking when you wrote, “The reason I said that is because anytime you call a person’s salvation into question over reasons that are not about who they believe Christ to be or what He did on the cross being the means to salvation, I think it is an attack to a brother or sister.” The reason is that Paul writing about the gospel in Galatians rebukes that church over preaching a false gospel – adding to the gospel. Paul does not mention anything about rebuking them because they wrongly taught who Christ was.

I mentioned Mormonism only on the basis of morality because you mentioned how the Robertsons act in the show. In my mind, I was pitting the “good works” category of Mormonism against the same category you challenge me with present in Duck Dynasty. We can disagree, fine. But my main point is that the gospel one preaches is not objectively true based on the good works present in their lives.

I would say John 10:16 is about the Gentiles being brought into Christ’s fold with the same Savior and gospel.

16 Mark March 19, 2013 at 3:02 pm

Evan, thank you so much for stopping by. I would like to say a little more about your comment, but I want to focus for the moment. I just have one question which I hope will not take further clarifying questions.

Is baptism necessary for salvation?

Thanks!

17 Rachel March 19, 2013 at 4:23 pm

As a member of the Church of Christ as well I would like to say that I think Evan gracefully responded to your post in a way that I very much agree with. I don’t want to speak for him, but I would like to answer your question “Is baptism necessary for salvation?”

1 Peter 3:21 states quite clearly that baptisms saves us as an appeal to Christ for a clean conscience.

Romans 8:9 says “However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.” (NASB) so the real question is how do we receive the holy spirit?

Well Acts 2:38 says “Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (NASB)

In Acts 19:1-6 we see an interesting interaction take place, part of which I will post below:
“He said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” And they said to him, “No, we have not even heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.” And he said, “Into what then were you baptized?”
Paul clearly implies, by asking the question in this manner, that they should have received the Holy Spirit by being baptized into something (Jesus).

Galations 3:27 states “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.” (NASB)

Roms 6:3-7 “Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin.” These verses paint a very clear picture of what baptism does. It’s pretty clear it’s a pivotal point. We’ve died to sin, we walk in newness of life, our old self is done away with, etc.

All but one of the 11 conversions in the books of Acts explicitly mention someone immediately being baptized and having the gospel shared with them and among the 4 conditions for baptism (faith, confession, repentance, and baptism) is the most commonly mention condition (as not all of the stories explicitly mention all 4 conditions).

There is also the conversion of the apostle Paul. Here was a man, who when he met Jesus on the Damascus Road, believed in Him. Here was a man who was repentant, as exhibited by his prayer and fasting (for three days straight) as he waited to be told what to do. Here was a man who confessed with his mouth Jesus as Lord (Acts 22:10). But had his sins been forgiven? Not until he obeyed the Lord by submitting to baptism. “Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.’” Acts 22:16 (NASB)
If having faith or simply asking God to save you through a prayer is how one can be saved then why was Paul commanded to be baptized to wash away his sins?

Through examination of the scriptures I am forced to come to the conclusion that baptism, as an appeal to Christ for a clean conscience, clothes us in Christ, forgives us our sins, and gives us the gift of the holy spirit. Without these things, can we really consider ourselves saved? So yes, according to the scriptures, baptism is necessary for salvation. But, God is the ultimate judge. It is not up to me to tell anyone that they are or aren’t saved but rather to show them what the bible says in regards to salvation and assure them what God has promised those who are obedient to him.

As a closing note I would like to restate what Evan already explained quite well which is that baptism is NOT a work you do to “earn” your salvation. Certainly not more than saying the sinners prayer or any other method widely taught for salvation. Nor would confession or repentance be considered a “work to earn your salvation”. It is simply obeying a commandment of the Lord. It is completely submissive/passive.

I apologize for the length and I hope I was clear. It is through much studying and examination that this conclusion has been reached. Not some cultish works based salvation as we are often referred to. We’ve just examined the scriptures and can find no other conclusion can be logically reached. It is our goal to follow the bible, in its entirety, and nothing more. In all honesty, I sincerely hope you are right and we are wrong. Many people believe in a faith only doctrine which through much studying and examination of scriptures I cannot accept to be correct. Which is not a good thing at all.

18 Ronnie March 19, 2013 at 6:11 pm

evankirby says:
“Baptism is not separate and apart from the gospel. It is a picture of the gospel.”

Apostle Paul says:
For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel

evankirby, I agree with you that Baptism is a picture of the Gospel. However, that definition refutes your point that they are not separate. Is a picture of you separate from you? I hope so. Furthermore, if Baptism is a picture of the Gospel then if you receive the Gospel why do you also need the picture if you have the reality? Finally, the Apostle Paul makes it clear that he sees the two as separate otherwise his statement makes no sense.

19 Matt Privett March 19, 2013 at 6:19 pm

To Evan, Rachel, and all,

1 Pet 3:21: “Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you – not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but the appeal to God for a good conscience – through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,”

Peter here is illustrating salvation using a comparison between the ark and the ordinance of baptism. But note that he’s quite clear that it is not the physical act of immersion into water which saves (“not the removal of dirt from the flesh”). A man isn’t clean before God because he was put into the water. “Baptism saves you” inasmuch as it represents the change which has already taken place in the man, the man being born again by the Spirit of God (John 3:3,8) so that he might see the kingdom of God and believe in His only begotten Son, that he might not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16). We are justified by faith (Rom 5:1), saved by grace through faith, and that not of ourselves, it is the gift of God (Eph 2:8-9). The gospel, according to Paul, who you reference, is the power of God unto salvation for *everyone who believes* (Rom 1:16), not everyone who believes and is baptized.

Just as the waters of the flood were the agent of destruction, so too are the waters of baptism symbolic of destruction. But because believers are baptized with Christ – being buried with Him – we survive the deadly waters of baptism and are rescued from death through His resurrection to walk in the newness of life. That is why Peter can say that baptism saves through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Peter isn’t saying that the rite itself has any saving power, but that it’s power is rooted in the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Peter himself says it’s not about the removal of dirt or filth from the flesh. He doesn’t use the word for “body” here, but the specific word for “flesh.” It’s not about the water removing the dirt from your skin, but about “an appeal to God for a good conscience.” In other words, baptism is what symbolizes what has happened in your heart if you trust in Christ. You have, on the basis of the death and resurrection of Christ, asked God to cleanse your conscience, to forgive your sins.

Yes, Galatians 3:27 does point to the fact all who were baptized into Christ are clothed with Christ, but that isn’t necessarily talking about an act in water, but the spiritual reality that has taken place in the life of one who has faith. Galatians 3 is all about how we are not saved by works, but by faith (3:5). Abraham believed God and it was reckoned to him as righteousness (3:6). It is those who are faith who are sons of Abraham (3:7). There is such a stress of believing, on faith, all throughout this chapter that to use verse 27 as evidence that water baptism saves just doesn’t hold up.

Furthermore, does not Paul himself differentiate baptism from the gospel? The former he did not come to do. The latter he came to preach. Does it not hold that if baptism into water were efficacious for salvation he would not have drawn a distinction? Yet that which was of first importance was that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures. By the grace of God Paul was what he was, but nowhere in that glorious text did he mention baptism? Is baptism a visible, outward representation of the salvation that has taken place in the life of one who believes? Yes. But it is not a part of salvation itself.

I guess my question for you is: Are you assured of your salvation because of your baptism, or are you assured of your salvation because of your faith in Jesus Christ (in His death, burial, and resurrection [through which we, having new life, appeal to God for a good conscience])?

20 Rachel March 19, 2013 at 6:48 pm

1 Peter is all about getting away from the way things were done under the old covenant and doing things the way they need to be done under the new covenant. Jews put a lot of stress on cleansing things. They needed to wash themselves to make themselves clean before entering the temple. So when he clarifies “not the removal of dirt from the flesh” he is simply clarifying that it is not the physical cleansing which saves. Furthermore, if one is saved before baptism why would he say we are saved through baptism as an appeal to God for a clean conscience? A) he would not say we are saved through baptism if we are saved beforehand and B) if we are saved prior to baptism them there would be no need to appeal to God for a clean conscience at baptism because your conscience would already be clean.

In 1 Corinthians when Paul states that he was not sent to baptize but to preach he is addressing an issue in the church. People were stating that they were “of” the person who baptized them rather than of Christ. And people were bragging if they were baptized by Paul. So he was saying that his purpose here is to preach the gospel, not to baptize.

21 Rachel March 19, 2013 at 6:50 pm

Oh and I am assured of my salvation because God promised salvation to those who obey the gospel. A gospel which includes baptism for the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the holy spirit. Which I’ve done. So… both!

22 evanrkirby March 19, 2013 at 7:17 pm

Rachel, I agree with you exactly. Also, what reason does one have to always interpret baptism in connection to salvation as a figurative baptism? In obedience to God the physical acts of obedience always matter. See James 2:14-17. I can believe that someone is hungry and needs food, but until i feed them, nothing has been accomplished. I don’t understand why there has to be a dichotomy between faith and baptism. I see them as unified things. True faith is acting faith. Also, when we talk about salvation, what are we being saved from? Sin. There are several verses that specifically mention that baptism is the point at which sins are washed away. If i’m already saved before i’m baptized, why do I have to have my sins washed away?

23 Matt Privett March 19, 2013 at 11:06 pm

Now, to say 1 Peter is all about getting away from the way things were done under the old covenant is just not correct. It is written to aliens, elect exiles… the Christians of the first century who were either just starting or were about to start experiencing significant persecution for their faith from the Empire. The whole letter is about instructing the church how to think and live in light of deteriorating conditions. An applicable letter for today if there ever was one.

That said, your willingness to grant that it isn’t the physical cleansing which saves defeats the argument that the “act” of baptism saves. The baptism into Christ happens at salvation when a sinner is regenerated, repents, trusts in Christ, is justified, and is thus identified with Christ. After all, upon the birth of the church the believers in Jerusalem were indwelt in the Holy Spirit because they believed in Jesus. The text says nothing about them being baptized in water first.

You can call baptism not a work unto salvation under your point of view all you want, but it just doesn’t make sense biblically. If we are saved by grace through faith, and that is the gift of God, you’re then arguing that salvation and the baptism of the Holy Spirit is contingent upon me getting into a pool and being immersed into water. That’s a work and that makes salvation contingent upon me.

But salvation is of the Lord, as Jonah writes (Jon 2:10). God foreknows, He predestines, He calls, He justifies, and ultimately He glorifies. In that golden chain of redemption we find in Romans 8:29-30, God is the active party and the one being saved is the direct object. At no point is His salvific work contingent upon baptism.

So we are saved before baptism, and Peter agrees. Look at Acts 10:44-48: “While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who were listening to the message. All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit HAD BEEN poured out on the Gentiles also. For they were hearing them speaking with tongues and exalting God. Then Peter answered, ‘Surely no one can refuse the water for these to be baptized who HAVE RECEIVED the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?’ And he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to stay on for a few days” (ALL CAPS EMPHASIS MINE).

If they had not yet been baptized, how then had they already believed and received the Holy Spirit?

24 Chuck March 19, 2013 at 11:19 pm

I agree that in most of the conversions mentioned in the New Testament it was followed or accompanied by baptism. I believe baptism is important, as it is an outward showing of what has already happened through the Holy Spirit on the inside. I do not believe it to be essential, else the thief on the cross with Jesus would not have joined Him in paradise(heaven). However, I will not say that those who believe that baptism is essential are not saved or not Christian because they teach that, as they are teaching the same salvation in Christ up to that point. I do not think that disqualifies what they have done in their heart already. It is following the example given in the New Testament, but I do not believe that someone is not saved until they have been baptized in water when Jesus talks about being baptized by the Spirit.
My questions to those who believe it is essential though are these. First, are the Old Testament saints in heaven or going to heaven? Are they saved? They were not baptized as taught in the New Testament. The first time we see baptism mentioned in the Bible is in the New Testament with John, the Baptizer. If they were not baptized by water and you believe they will be in heaven then how did or will they get there? If you they will not be there then how do you reconcile what the New Testament says about their faith (Hebrews 11).
The second question is one I have asked of some pastors and laypeople who believe baptism to be essential and have gotten no clear answer. If someone does by faith in Christ repent of their sins to be saved and dies before they are baptized are they saved/going to heaven? One they don’t want to say no and condemn someone to hell because that is God’s judgement, not ours. Two, they can’t say yes because that goes against their doctrine/beliefs. So they say, “We don’t know. That is up to God.” What are the answers to those two questions? Thank you!

25 tamra March 20, 2013 at 3:12 am

Thank you brother :)
Love this discussion!

26 Rachel March 20, 2013 at 9:03 am

Matt, the household of Cornelius is a very in depth topic. One I fear I cannot do justice without typing so much I don’t think anyone would actually read it. I’ll give you a brief overview of the topic, or as brief as I can be and still feel as though I was thorough.

There is a difference between baptism FOR the holy spirit and baptism WITH the holy spirit. The baptism with the Holy Spirit is referred to only once more in the Bible on the day of Pentecost.

As we turn to Acts 10, we want to note some things:

1 It had been at least ten to thirteen years since the Day of Pentecost until the events of Acts 10 and 11 occurred.

2 During these years, salvation was only for the Jews and their half-breed relatives, the Samaritans.

3 There was no salvation for the Gentiles. Earlier, in Acts 9, the Lord had chosen an apostle to the Gentiles – Saul of Tarsus (later known as the great apostle Paul). But as yet, God had not opened the door of salvation to the Gentiles.

Let us now note the important points as God opens salvation for the Gentiles:

God began by choosing a good man. The man He selected was a Roman centurion named Cornelius who had helped the Jews in many ways, who prayed to God, and who gave alms to the poor. An angel appeared to Cornelius (Acts 10:1-8), and told him to send down the seacoast to the city of Joppa. In Joppa was Simon Peter, who would preach the gospel to them. Cornelius then dispatched soldiers to get Peter.

In the meantime (Acts 10:9-23), the Lord prepares Peter for the events that are shortly to follow. Peter is up on the rooftop praying just before lunchtime, and he has a vision of a great sheet being let down from heaven. On the sheet are all sorts of unclean animals that a Jew should not eat (Jews could eat only mammals that both chewed the cud and had cloven hooves. Pigs had cloven hooves, but did not chew the cud, and were unclean – see Leviticus 11). As Peter views the sheet being let down to him, a voice says to him, “Arise, Peter, kill and eat.” But Peter says, “By no means, Lord, for I have never eaten anything unholy or unclean.” And again the voice comes a second time, “What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy.” This happened three times for Peter’s benefit, then the whole thing was taken back up into heaven. As Peter was thinking about these things, the Holy Spirit spoke to him, telling him that there were certain men outside and that Peter was to go with them without doubting anything, for the Holy Spirit said, “I have sent them Myself.” So the next day Peter and six brethren went with these men to Caesarea where Cornelius was waiting for them.

As Peter and the Jewish Christian brethren arrived, Cornelius met them and fell down to worship at Peter’s feet. Peter stood him up and told Cornelius not to worship him, for he was just a man. Then in Acts 10:28 Peter apologized for being there, explaining that it was not lawful for a Jew to go to the house of a Gentile or to eat with him, and yet the Lord told Peter and his brothers in Christ to come.

Cornelius had his family and friends assembled to hear what Peter had to say, so Peter began preaching to them. He testified that Jesus had been resurrected from the dead, and that in this way God proved Him to be the Messiah.

As Peter came to the close of his message, a very strange thing happened (Acts 10:44-48). While Peter was still speaking, the Holy Spirit fell upon the Gentiles who were there and the Jewish Christians were amazed because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out upon the Gentiles also. They were hearing them speaking in tongues and glorifying God.

As a result of all this, Peter’s reaction was that no one could forbid water for these to be immersed who had “received the Holy Spirit just as we did.” And he ordered them to be immersed in the name of Jesus.

What is it that happened to these Gentiles? Something very amazing concerning the Holy Spirit occurred – that much is certain. But there is not enough information in Acts 10 to give us the complete picture. However, the story is retold in Acts 11, and there we find enough facts to help us put everything into focus.

In Acts 11:1-3, when Peter went back to Jerusalem, the Jewish Christians there took him to task for having gone to the house of Gentiles and having eaten with them. For almost 1500 years God had been impressing upon the minds of the Jews that they were a special people, a separate people, and that they were not to touch or eat with Gentiles – they were unclean. This was so strongly impressed upon their minds that these early Christians did not understand that the gospel was to be for all nations and for all peoples (John 11:52). So it became necessary for Peter to explain what happened at the house of Cornelius the Gentile.

He recounted how the angel had appeared to Cornelius, telling him to send to Joppa to find Peter, who would tell him “Words by which you will be saved.” He pointed out how he (Peter) had seen the vision of the great sheet being let down. He described what then had happened in Caesarea, how as he was preaching, the Holy Spirit “fell on them, just as He did upon us at the beginning” (Acts 11:15).

Acts 11:15 is a key verse in understanding the baptism with the Spirit. There are three main thoughts to consider:

Peter said that the Holy Spirit fell upon them as on “us at the beginning.” When was the “beginning”? The “beginning” is the Day of Pentecost, 30 A.D. On that day the apostles were baptized with the Holy Spirit, and the church – the bride and body of Christ – had its beginning.

Peter also points out that something happened to “them” just as on “us at the beginning.” The “us” is very clearly, from the record of Acts 1 & 2, the apostles.

Peter further points out that the Holy Spirit fell on the Gentiles “just” as He did on “us at the beginning.” When someone uses the word “just” in this context, it means “in exactly the same way.” On the Day of Pentecost we recall that three things happened to the apostles:

There was a sound like a mighty rushing wind, which filled the house where they were sitting.
There were tongues like fire coming down on the heads of each of them.
Each spoke in other tongues as the Spirit was giving them utterance.

When Peter says that it “fell on them just as on us at the beginning,” we know that all three of the above were present, although the record in Acts 10 does not specify all the details.

In Acs 11:16 Peter defines what happened: “And I remembered the word of the Lord, how He used to say, ‘John baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’” Peter in this way tells that the household of Cornelius was baptized with the Holy Spirit – and that the baptism with the Spirit once again consisted of the three parts listed above.

We now understand what Peter meant in Acts 10:47 – God had baptized Cornelius and his household with the Spirit just as He had baptized “we” (the apostles on the Day of Pentecost).

Peter then explains in Acts 11:17 that “God gave to them the same gift as He gave to us, after believing in the Lord Jesus Christ. Who was I that I could stand in God’s way?” Peter, as a result of this sign, understood that he couldn’t stand in God’s way – that God was going to make the way of salvation open to Gentiles regardless of what Peter wanted, and that he was not to call “unclean” (Gentiles) what the Lord was now calling cleansed.

As Peter made these things clear to the Jewish Christians back in Jerusalem, they also now understood, and said, as they glorified God, “Well, then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life” (Acts 11:18).

The baptism with the Holy Spirit is a miraculous sign occurring only twice in the scriptures. Both times there were other miraculous signs. Acts 45:56 says “All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also. For they were hearing them speaking with tongues and exalting God.” So in the next verse when Peter says “Surely no one can refuse the water for these to be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?” The “we” is referring to the way the apostles received the holy spirit on the day of Pentecost and he’s recognizing that God has made salvation available to the Gentiles also, so surely they can not refuse them the waters of baptism.

27 Rachel March 20, 2013 at 9:29 am

Matt, I apologize for the length of my response above but I wanted to be thorough since this is always the “go to” scripture for people wanting to prove that one can be saved prior to baptism. It’s in depth. It’s confusing at first. So I wanted to be thorough with my explanation and I do hope you take my explanation into consideration. As for your other points/questions… I wanted to address those separately. It seems to me people who say that saving baptism happens without water but rather to your spirit when you believe/repent are simply trying to justify to themselves scriptures which they would otherwise have to disagree with. The simple truth is that baptism is a commandment. It isn’t something which happens TO you, it is something we are commanded to do. God can not command us to do something which we have no control over. Furthermore, our word baptize comes from the Greek work baptizo which means “to immerse, to dip into, to plunge into, to submerge.”

In Acts 8:36, as Philip preached Jesus to the Ethiopian, the eunuch said, “Look! Water! What prevents me from being baptized?” Water immersion evidently has something to do with the preaching of Jesus.

1 Peter 3:20-21 is VERY clear that baptism involves water. “who once were disobedient, when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water. Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you—not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience—through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,” He is clearly relating the flood waters in the days of Noah to baptism. The clarification “not the removal of dirt from the body” is a clarification that there’s nothing magical about the water. You can be baptized in a pool, a baptistry, or a smelly old swamp and you’ll still be saved because it isn’t the physical cleansing but the spiritual cleansing which happens during ones baptism which saves you. His further clarification “but an appeal to God for a good conscience” is also clarifying that the physical act of baptism does nothing on its own. It is an appeal to God FOR a clean conscience (once again making it perfectly clear that prior to baptism ones conscience is not yet clean). Without the appeal you’re just getting wet.

Salvation is ALWAYS contingent upon you. Even within the confines of your faith only doctrine, your salvation is still contingent upon your faith in Christ. Repentance? Confession? God doesn’t just arbitrarily save people… he saves people who have been obedient to his commandments in the scriptures.

Chuck – I am simply going to refer you to Hebrews 10. Upon Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection we entered into a NEW covenant with God. The old law was done away with and a new one was implemented. So the Old Testaments folks (including the thief on the cross) were subject to the old covenant and the old laws.

I’ll close with one last question. Why was Paul ordered in Acts 22 to be baptized and wash away his sins? He had been fasting and praying for three days straight and he certainly believed. So why weren’t his sins forgiven until he was baptized?

28 Dr. Gregory Tomlin March 20, 2013 at 11:23 am

You have so very much missed the point. I’m Baptist, not Church of Christ, so I don’t believe what the Robertsons believe with respect to baptism. In fact, I’m a seminary professor and could argue the same point that you make, both linguistically and historically. But seriously? Is there any doubt that these people have faith in Christ and have accepted Him as their personal Lord and Savior. For them, baptism is the first act of obedience to Christ. So they are taking it literally. Big deal. Does it affect you? Does it affect the non-believer in a negative way? NO. It DOES NOT. They bring the gospel to people. None of them are theologians, by any means, but they know that salvation is only available in Christ. So leave it alone.

29 Mark March 20, 2013 at 11:44 am

Dr. Tomlin, none of them are theologians? Yet, some of them are elders in a church?

Did you read was I posted from their ministry about baptism? Did you read the answers the Church of Christ folks commenting here gave? Baptism is more than just the first act of obedience – it is essential for salvation. The material from their ministry teaches directly against the doctrine of sola fide. Directly against the 1000’s of altar calls across this nation given by Southern Baptist every week.

Being a Southern Baptist and having LifeWay promote this family and their gospel does affect me.

How do you know it does not affect the non-believer?

Or should I retort: Does this blog affect you? Does it affect the non-believer in a negative way? NO. It DOES NOT. So leave it alone.

30 Chris Roberts March 20, 2013 at 4:22 pm

Gregory,

How important is it to clearly articulate that salvation is all of grace, all of Christ? How important is it to be clear to people that our works cannot save us? To what degree is this message contradicted when the work of baptism is seen as necessary for salvation?

31 Dr. Greg Tomlin March 21, 2013 at 9:48 am

Mark and Chris: You both missed my point. My point is … I thought clearly expressed … none of this is addressed on the show, which you admit you haven’t watched, Mark. Most people will not say, “Oh, I want to become exactly like Phil Robertson.” But the show brings honor to the name of Christ. They pray, they talk about the birth of the Savior, and in their testimonies in other venues, they say, “Jesus is the only way” a man can be saved. They have a high view of Scripture. And as I said before, I thoroughly disagree with them. I am a seminary professor, teaching church history. I affirm baptism for believer’s only, following a profession of faith, and that getting wet just gets you wet. It doesn’t save. But you’ll learn some day that there are some things worth going to the mat for in a public forum. There are some that aren’t. Getting in depth on their personal beliefs when these aren’t in public view on the show, or in their books, isn’t one of them. And I’m curious why you’d take this on … people expressing faith in Christ on a show … when you probably haven’t written a word about other TV shows which are full of sex, drugs, violence and paganism. Maybe you have … I’d be interested in seeing it.

32 Rachel March 21, 2013 at 9:54 am

So, Mark, are you upset that what we said contradicts with the teachings of the Baptist doctrine? Which, by the way, was founded in 1605 by John Smyth. We are not called to follow the teachings or traditions of MAN but rather the teachings found in God’s word. It is my number one goal to always follow the bible first, even if my findings lead me to a different conclusion than that of my preacher/teacher/elders etc. I do not consider myself denominational but rather as a member of the body (or church) of Christ (founded by Jesus himself in 33 AD) who follows God’s teachings first, foremost, and exclusively.

It is my understanding that most Baptist churches, at least in my area, ask people to say the sinners prayer for their salvation. The trouble is, this concept is found NO WHERE in scriptures. It is a completely man made doctrine. So why, then, does this seem to be the most widely taught method for salvation? If not one example can be found in the Bible?

We have not been called to identify ourselves as Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, Lutherans, or any other denomination founded by MAN but we are to be Christians – members of ONE body in Christ and to follow the teachings of the bible and the bible alone.

Rom 16:17-18 “I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people.” Now I’m not trying to call anyone naive who is a member of a denomination but rather just pointing that it should cause alarm to you that there was ever a need for your denomination. We started off as one church. People began to get their own ideas and break off to start their own denominations. Some, like Lutherans and Calvinists, are obvious because they are named after the MAN who founded it. But regardless, you should examine the teachings or your denominations and see why there was a need to leave the body of Christ in the first in order to start their own denomination.

33 Mark March 21, 2013 at 10:18 am

Dr. Tomlin, what has the gospel the DD guys preach have to do with the fact that I haven’t watched the show? How many of their sermons or of their material have you listened and read? I can’t believe a conservative seminary professor does not understand why I took this on. I have learned that there are things worth going to the mat over and those that are not. Some I’ve learned the hard way though I’m sure I have plenty to learn in my sanctification.

You know, I tried to be gracious in my post and not outright condemn anyone. I tried to show awareness in this age when, for some reason, some of the most influential Christian organization like LifeWay and the Gospel Coalition overlook sound doctrine seemingly for the momentary spotlight.

The DD guys are so influential that some have come to be baptized by them. People watch the show, hear their stories and want their faith. You may be comfortable with a fan reaching out to the DD folks because they want to be baptized by them, etc. I am not. What gospel are these fans receiving? You may say it’s only a one, two or a handful, but how many are you comfortable with sending down a false path? What if you could stop even one person from taking that path? Is that not enough to go to the mat?

If all I did was write about TV shows then I’d have a TV show blog. If I happen to catch something like I did with DD and very little research turns up very poor doctrine then I may address it. Is there something wrong with that approach? Isn’t that just good blogging? Using your reasoning I could ask if you run around to Christian blogs and when you find things you disagree with – do you then challenge each blogger asking why they don’t cover everything on said topic? It’s a ridiculous standard and it is often applied when one person does not like what another person has written about.

34 Mark March 21, 2013 at 10:53 am

Rachel, if you’re going to ask me a question you may want to let me answer instead of assuming several answers and then going on to rebut yourself. :)

I thought I was clear in my issue. My view, and that of Protestantism generally and historically, is making baptism essential for salvation is adding to the gospel. Both LifeWay and the Gospel Coalition, who are promoting DD, would not promote or teach that baptism is essential for salvation. In fact, there are Southern Baptist resources written against Church of Christ doctrine. See: http://web.archive.org/web/20130120061054/http://www.4truth.net/fourtruthpbdenominations.aspx?pageid=8589952154

I’m not a huge fan of the sinner’s prayer and it can be misused as if it is the way to salvation in the way you’ve stated. However, that is not what sola fide, or the doctrine of faith alone, teaches.

As J.V. Fesko puts it:

What is justification? Justification is an act of God’s free grace, wherein he pardons all our sins, and accepts us as righteous in his sight, only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us, and received by faith alone.

The first benefit of justification is that God pardons all of our sins, past, present, and future. The divines cite Paul’s quotation of Psalm 32: “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered” (Rom. 4:7; see Ps. 32:1). The second benefit of justification is the acceptance of the sinner as righteous in God’s sight “only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us.” To have the status of “righteous” conferred upon oneself is quite amazing. When a judge declares a person innocent, it simply means he is not guilty of breaking the law. But if a judge declares a person righteous, it means that not only is he innocent of breaking the law but that he has also fulfilled the requirement of the law. Let us take theft as an example. For a person to be righteous in this case, he must refrain from stealing. But in addition to this, he must also protect the property of others. He must fulfill both the negative and positive demands of the law against theft. By justification, a sinner is accepted as righteous, not just for one part of the law, but for the whole law—every single commandment, every single jot and tittle. He is counted as one who has kept every dimension of every law. From whence does this righteousness arise?

The righteousness, or obedience, belongs to Christ. The divines cite two key passages of Scripture to substantiate the imputation, or accrediting, of Christ’s righteousness to the believer. First, they cite 2 Corinthians 5:21: “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” According to the Scriptures, Christ was the spotless Lamb, perfect and sinless (1 Peter 1:19; Heb. 4:15). Yet, Christ bore the sin of His people—it was accredited to Him and He carried it. The manner by which Christ was accredited with our sin so that He could bear the law’s curse (imputation) is the same manner by which we receive Christ’s perfect obedience—His fulfilling of every requirement of the law. The divines cite Romans 5:19 to this effect: “For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were constituted sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be constituted righteous” (translation mine). Adam’s disobedience was accredited to all who are united to him, and the obedience of Christ, the last Adam, is accredited to all of those united to Him (1 Cor. 15:45).

35 Ted March 21, 2013 at 11:19 am

Then I guess the thief on the cross didn’t enter into heaven since he wasn’t baptized.

36 Dr. Gregory Tomlin March 21, 2013 at 11:28 am

There is false faith (not in Christ) and there is poor theology. I’d say they had the latter, not the former. That is all.

37 evidenceministries March 21, 2013 at 11:40 am

Dr. Greg Tomlin,
At which seminary are you affiliated?

38 Mitchell Lebron March 21, 2013 at 11:53 am

The only thing wrong I can say for myself, is that we are wrong to call the program “gospel centered”. I have been watching a while and it doesn’t center at all around the gospel. It is clean, fun entertainment, that doesn’t offend and it just so happens the family is a Christian family. But gospel center, nah I think that is too much of a stretch. And I think, in regards to the church, that that discussion should be left separate from the television show anyway, because let’s face it, I doubt there is any individual that believes 100% of what any church or man teaches. So for me I just conclude that it isn’t a gospel or bible based show, but it is safe for my family and I to watch together.

39 Mitchell Lebron March 21, 2013 at 11:55 am

Instead we should focus more on getting that Preacher’s Daughters tv show banned….that’s my two cents

40 RKW March 21, 2013 at 11:59 am

Where does one find a sinner’s prayer in scripture? It is faith in Christ and a confession of Christ’s lordship that leads to salvation (Romans 10:9,10). Baptism in the New Testament was done immediately upon one’s coming to faith in Christ. The testimony in Acts is clear. There’s not a single person ever responding to the gospel by asking Jesus in to their heart. Instead, they put their faith in Christ, and are baptized. Baptism is no where described as a work of man. Baptism is tied directly to the gospel, which is the death, burial and resurrection of Christ, and it unites one to that saving act (Romans 6:3-11). Folks who believe in baptism’s essential nature view the act as one in which the believer is buried and raised with Christ “through faith in the powerful working of God” (Colossians 2:12, esv). I have never heard a Church of Christ member suggest that baptism is faith in man’s work, but rather the Christ ordained expression of faith in His saving work on the Cross. No one in the Churches of Christ have ever, to my knowledge, suggested that water saves, or that a grace is somehow bestowed on the candidate apart from faith. They teach that the blood of Christ alone cleanses sin and brings forgiveness, and that baptism unites one with Christ’s death, burial and resurrection.

41 Dr. Gregory Tomlin March 21, 2013 at 12:27 pm

@ evidenceministries: Assistant Professor of Church History and Faculty Instructional Mentor, Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, 2006-Present. I teach in the online division, not residentially. Ph.D. from Southwestern Seminary, further study at Baylor and Boston University. In case anyone is interested, I don’t disagree with Mark’s notion that to add something to the gospel alters the gospel. No dispute there. I just think we don’t have to go after every theological boogeyman out there, especially when theology is not on display for people to see. I’d also agree with Mitchell … it is a good clean show, where the Name is upheld honorably. But there’s no preaching of the gospel on it. But all you folks out there concerned about such things, you need to toss your Phillips, Craig and Dean albums.

42 Dave March 21, 2013 at 12:28 pm

Thanks for bringing this topic to discussion, Mark. I was born again when I was 23 and knew absolutely nothing about God or religion. I was in a tiny town in the desert. I didn’t know many people. I never knew any Christians growing up. But, I was on the phone with someone who shared Christ with me and I was born-again. I moved from there not too long after. I flew 2000 miles. When I got to my new home and started going to church I was told I needed to be baptized. Which I gladly did! I often wondered, in my spiritual infancy, if that plane had gone down would I have gone to heaven to be with my precious Savior? You will not ever convince me that I would be separated from my beloved Jesus because I was ignorant of what baptism was. Never. When I was born-again my mind and life became an intense love for the Savior. Baptism is extremely important, yes. Essential to enter heaven? No.

43 Mark March 21, 2013 at 12:29 pm

RKW, no matter how you frame it, the issue is that we disagree over baptism being essential to salvation. You are part of a Church of Christ so I understand your defense.

However, the above that I quoted from White’s Ferry denies that the following is a valid confession of faith, “I am already a Christian,” and “I am already saved; I was saved when I believed in Jesus.” Not only is that deemed invalid, but the prospect is encouraged to be re-baptized for salvation. Whereas, Protestants would see that as a valid profession of faith (all things considered).

44 Rachel March 21, 2013 at 1:09 pm

And my issue is that faith only is a baptist denominational doctrine NOT consistent with what is taught in the bible, it is a doctrine created by a MAN

45 Mark March 21, 2013 at 1:42 pm

Rachel, thank you. I’m glad it’s clear we disagree because the gospel is too serious to get wrong. Ironically, I quoted a Presbyterian who quoted a Presbyterian confession of faith.

Are you familiar with the Reformation and the Protestant position against Roman Catholicism which also holds to a form of baptismal regeneration?

46 Mark March 21, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Dave, thank you for sharing. I agree.

47 Rachel March 21, 2013 at 1:55 pm

Roman Catholics differ greatly with much of what the bible teaches. Their view of baptism differs as well.
You never answered my question so I’ll ask again: Why was Paul ordered in Acts 22 to be baptized to wash away his sins? He had been fasting and praying for three days straight and he certainly believed. So why weren’t his sins forgiven until he was baptized?

48 Michelle Lesley March 21, 2013 at 3:15 pm

Great article, Mark, thanks.

I had a couple of the same questions as Chuck (above), but it seems as though the question of whether or not Abraham and the thief on the cross are in heaven has been answered as “they were under the old covenant.” I’m not sure I completely agree with that, but for the sake of argument, I’ll stipulate to it.

So here’s my question, not entirely hypothetical since I have heard of this sort of thing happening: let’s say a man is in a horrible car accident TODAY. The first person on the scene to offer assistance is a Christian. Let’s just go ahead and say he’s one of the DD guys or another CoC member. Seeing that the car accident victim is at death’s door, the Christian goes over and shares the gospel with him. With his last breath, the accident victim repents of his sin and places his faith in Christ. Seconds later, he’s dead, without having been baptized. Is this car accident victim in heaven today?

49 Rachel March 21, 2013 at 4:05 pm

Michelle,
I am not going to answer your question. I am not God, and I do not claim to be. Ultimately he is the judge and he can accept or deny anyone into his kingdom as he so pleases. The only thing we have control over is whether we ourselves have been obedient to the gospel. If we have, we are promised eternity in paradise with the father. That’s all we know and that’s all I care to discuss. Hypothetical situations are a waste of time and I find people often only resort to them when they have no place else to go. Because the evidence is clear in scriptures and people have a hard time accepting it. So they resort to hypothetical situations and “what if” this and that.

My real question to you is what problem do you have with the explanation that Abraham and the thief on the cross were under the old covenant? When Jesus died on the cross and resurrected from the dead we entered into a New Covenant with him. This is why we do not today have to sacrifice our best livestock to God. Our means of justification is through Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. Rom 6:1-6 explains that we come into contact with his death, burial, and resurrection through baptism entering into a covenant with Christ ourselves. After baptism we “rise to walk in newness of life”

Please read Hebrews 10. You’ll need to read the whole chapter to get a full understanding but Hebrews 10:10 says “By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.”

and Hebrews 10:16-18
“This is the covenant that I will make with them
After those days, says the Lord:
I will put My laws upon their heart,
And on their mind I will write them,”

He then says,

“And their sins and their lawless deeds
I will remember no more.”

Now where there is forgiveness of these things, there is no longer any offering for sin.”

50 Michelle Lesley March 21, 2013 at 4:36 pm

Rachel- It sounds more like you CAN’T answer my question. This isn’t a hypothetical situation. It is a real life situation that has happened to my husband and to others, and it’s not a waste of time to anyone who has been there, like doctors or EMTs who see this sort of REAL LIFE SITUATION every day. I didn’t “resort” to anything. It’s a very real, practical, and simple question that any Christian’s doctrine should be able to answer.

So since you can’t answer the question, I will.

If you say that the accident victim is NOT in heaven today, you are saying that people are not saved unless they are baptized– that salvation cannot take place apart from baptism, and that anyone who dies without being baptized is condemned to hell.

If you say that the accident victim IS in heaven today, you are saying that people can be saved without being baptized– that baptism is not a requirement for regeneration to take place.

So, if a friend of yours who’s an EMT came to you and said, “Sometimes I’m with someone in his last moments of life. I’m wondering –since there’s no way this person can be baptized before he dies– if I should bother sharing the gospel with him.” What would you tell him? Are you going to tell him you’re not going to answer his question?

51 Rachel March 21, 2013 at 5:16 pm

Michelle, I meant exactly what I said. I am not God, therefore I will not answer your question. I will not attempt to speak for him that would be blasphemous. What I do know and the only thing I care to discuss is what the bible says. Acts 2:38 tells us baptism is for the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the holy spirit. Roms 8 tells us that if anyone does not have the spirit, God does not know him. 1 Peter 3 tells us we are saved by baptism. We have been promised eternity in paradise with the father if we are obedient to the gospel. Those are the facts. God can save whoever he pleases he is GOD, but according to the scriptures there is no promise of salvation to those who have not had their sins forgiven, received the gift of the holy spirit, been clothed with Christ, been buried in Christ’s blood, etc. God transforms us through baptism. That is evident through examination of the scriptures.
“For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.” Roms 2:13

52 Michelle Lesley March 21, 2013 at 5:49 pm

Speaking for God and answering a direct question from Scripture are not the same thing. So you can’t answer the question. Got it.

Anybody else care to take a whack at it from the baptismal regeneration perspective?

53 RKW March 21, 2013 at 6:09 pm

Mark, respectfully, those in Churches of Christ and Christian Churches (and other Christian groups) disagree with your characterization that they teach “gospel + baptism.” Scripture connects baptism with the gospel and our response to it. No matter how you frame it, Peter didn’t say to the first Christian converts: “Repent and say the sinners prayer and you’ll be saved.” He said: “Repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit…” (Acts 2:38). There are many Christians who understand it this way, and I’ve yet to see the passages teaching baptism as a proper response to the gospel adequately explained another way. And to others on this thread, most who hold this view would never suggest that someone dying before being baptized cannot be saved, i.e., “dying on the way to be baptized.” God always looks in to the heart and intent of any person, and it’s purely by his grace and mercy that any of us are saved.

54 Rachel March 21, 2013 at 6:09 pm

I DID answer your question, as well as I could, using scriptures. However, God is the ultimate judge and for me to say definitively that someone is or is not heaven would be me speaking for him, since ultimately only he can decide that.

How about you answer a question for me? How can we be assured of someones salvation if they have not had their sins forgiven or received the gift of the holy spirit or been clothed in Christ or been buried into the death, burial, and resurrection and raised to walk in newness of life? It is evidenced throughout scripture that baptism is where this all takes place. So how can we be assured of someones salvation outside of baptism? We are justified by God through our faith during our baptism. 1 Peter calls baptism an appeal to God for a clean conscience.

Also, NO ONE has answered my question about Paul yet. If he was saved when he believed then why, after three days of fasting and praying, was he commanded to be baptized for the forgiveness of his sins?

55 Michelle Lesley March 21, 2013 at 6:41 pm

No you didn’t, Rachel. You said twice: “I will not answer your question.” And I’m not asking you (or anyone else– this was actually a question to anyone who believes in baptismal regeneration, not just you) to speak for God or quote a bunch of Scriptures. I am asking a simple yes or no question: Based on the doctrines of your church, is the accident victim saved or not? I could answer that question in about one or two sentences if someone asked me. When you give me a straight yes or no, based on the teachings of your church, I’ll be glad to answer any questions you have for me.

56 Rachel March 21, 2013 at 6:55 pm

To quote myself from earlier “God can save whoever he pleases he is GOD, but according to the scriptures there is no promise of salvation to those who have not had their sins forgiven, received the gift of the holy spirit, been clothed with Christ, been buried in Christ’s blood, etc.” So according to the bible (not the teachings of my church) there is no promise of salvation to those who are not baptized because the bible tells that baptism is when we have our sins forgiven and receive the gift of the holy spirit. But again, God is God and he is all powerful and he very well may make provisions for those people so I will NOT speak for him and give a definite yes or no because there no way that I could know for sure so there is NO WAY to give a straight “yes” or “no” because it is unknown. It is for him to decide. But the evidence present in scriptures would suggest no.

Your turn :)

57 Jack March 21, 2013 at 8:20 pm

Was the thief on the cross saved?

58 RKW March 21, 2013 at 11:58 pm

Jack, the thief on the cross was saved – Jesus said so. As I understand scripture, Baptism picturing the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ was not practiced until after the saving work of Christ was complete. The gospel is the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. The thief was saved based on his turning to Christ in his last hour while Jesus was still on the cross. It was after his resurrection and prior to his ascension that Jesus told his apostles to go and make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

59 L. D. March 22, 2013 at 9:41 am

I was raised in the Church of Christ and I can say that this is most certainly what they believe. There was never really a Gospel message at my church and I never understood salvation until I was around 19 years old and someone outside my church explained it to me. I was rebaptized last year as a result of the Holy Spirit speaking to me about my first baptism (at 12 years old) took place when I was an unbeliever.

60 evidenceministries March 22, 2013 at 12:24 pm

I have been following this thread and was content to let those involved in the discussion continue without my contribution until I saw the posts of Dr. Gregory Tomlin. There have been good arguments on both sides of the issue here and I am happy that there is mutual respect exhibited towards the people on each side. I have to admit though that I am surprised and disappointed by Tomlin’s first post in particular. I’m looking at post #28.

Because of the type of ministry I am involved in, I regularly receive criticism from people who tell me that it is wrong to tell other people that they are wrong. I always ask them that if this is really true, then why did they bother to email me at all? Isn’t what they just did… WRONG? It is a self defeating argument.

Dr. Tomlin essentially does the same thing here. He claims that it isn’t a big deal so we should leave it alone. Here is what I don’t understand. If it isn’t a big enough deal to talk about it in the first place, then why is it a big deal to tell others that it isn’t a big deal and that we shouldn’t talk about it? In your own words Dr. Tomlin, if it isn’t a big deal, “leave it alone.” If you decide to respond to my post, I will take that as an admission that you were wrong. You obviously think this is a big deal or you never wold have responded to Mark in the first place.

Everyone here thinks it is a big enough deal to talk about. Those on the side of baptismal regeneration think it is a big enough deal to correct Mark about their view of the gospel. I was thinking about doing that myself until I read that someone else had already done that. Those in the CoC movement do not see baptism as a work separate from the gospel so from their perspective they will never admit to gospel + baptism = salvation. To them, baptism is a part of the gospel.

*On a side note, Rachel points out in post #20 that Paul states that he was not sent to baptize but to preach the gospel. (1st Corinthians 1:17) Unless I missed it, that point has never even been addressed by those who hold to baptismal regeneration.*

On the other side of the issue are those who say that baptism is unnecessary for salvation. From their perspective, insisting that baptism is a prerequisite to salvation is adding an unnecessary work to the gospel. The bottom line here is that the two sides are disagreeing about the very nature of the gospel. How is that NOT a big deal? The one thing every here agrees upon is that this is a big enough deal to discuss, Yes, even you Dr. Tomlin think it is a big enough deal or you never would have spoken up about it.

Does that affect us? Absolutely. Does it affect the unbeliever? You bet. How? Well, because we are disagreeing upon exactly HOW the unbeliever becomes a believer. Is it through the faith-filled waters of baptism or is it faith without baptism? Simply put, we are disagreeing upon the very nature of the gospel. Does it include baptism or not? Dr. Tomlin, I respectfully suggest that the person who has missed the point is you.

We are not debating about whether or not the show is good, wholesome, family entertainment or whether or not these things are addressed on the show We are debating if these guys believe the Biblical gospel and because there is disagreement over what the gospel is there IS question of whether these people have faith in Christ and have accepted Him as their personal Lord and Savior. From the side of those who hold to baptismal regeneration, they question the salvation of those who do not agree that baptism is a part of the gospel, From the other side, they question whether or not these guys are really Christians because they want to know if they trust Jesus alone or Jesus plus their baptism. So to “leave it alone?” No, I don’t think that is going to happen.

The question you have to ask yourself is, “Is the very nature of the gospel worth, as you put it, “going to mat for in a public forum.”We ALL think so or we never would have entered into this discussion.

61 Dr. Gregory Tomlin March 22, 2013 at 1:47 pm

Boy, you must not have absorbed much of what I wrote. I didn’t say IT (meaning a redefinition of the gospel) wasn’t “a big deal.” Of course, adding anything to the gospel is a BIG deal. I said I disagreed with them. But you make it sound like I’d say that about, oh, let’s say, Mormonism. No, it is a false religion. Or Buddhism. No, it is a false religion. Your post is nothing more than hyperbole on your point, but I understand it as a common tactic in debate. Friend, and I call you that in Christian love, you have no idea who I am or what I’ve done and where I have been for the sake of the gospel … so your criticism is baseless. I know you can’t read tone in the printed word. I wasn’t yelling at Mark or even perturbed with him. I happen to think there are bigger fish to fry, and when some men are out there praying to Christ, talking about him being the Savior of the world, and saying “he is the only way,” you exhort them to a proper understanding of baptism if you feel there is an error. You don’t tell everyone to be aware of the false prophets with long beards and camo clothing.

62 RKW March 22, 2013 at 4:11 pm

@ Evidence Ministries. If you hear the Robertson’s testimony, they, like most members of Churches of Christ and Christian Churches trust Christ fully for their salvation, not their baptism. The term “baptismal regeneration” suggests, at least in the mind of some, that the viewpoint of those in these congregations is that the baptismal waters somehow save (ritualistically or as a sacrament that bestows forgiveness). That isn’t at all accurate. It’s one’s faith being expressed in the power of God displayed on the cross and in the resurrection that’s re-enacted in baptism (Colossians 2:12). It’s faith in Christ and his finished work, not faith in baptism that saves. I believe, that the Robertson’s, like myself, and many in these churches, wouldn’t question or judge the salvation of a believer who similarly trusts Christ, but is baptized out of obedience to Jesus and doesn’t understand baptism to be the point of being united with Christ. We do believe that we’re saved by grace, not by our perfect understanding of baptism. Having said that, we want to respectfully point out what we see to be truth in scripture, as also do with your understanding of God’s word. We agree on far more than we differ on!

63 Mark March 22, 2013 at 4:52 pm

RKW, I have show that the minister who teaches/does evangelism from White’ Ferry whose been there 30 years teaches baptism is for unbelievers not believers. That is, one is not saved until they are baptized. And, again, the gospel sharing quotes in the post show that they teach someone who professes faith alone is not saved and needs to be baptized again.

64 evidenceministries March 22, 2013 at 7:08 pm

Dr. Gregory Tomlin,
You are correct. I have no idea who you are or what you’ve done or where you have been for the sake of the gospel … but that does not mean my criticism is baseless. If it does, then your criticism of me, and Mark for that matter, is equally baseless. This works both ways. My criticism is based upon nothing more than what you have written here. That is all one needs to see that you have missed the point. I am trying to understand you and if I have missed your point, then please elaborate. I’ll make my case first.

From my perspective, this whole discussion is about the nature of the gospel. Does the gospel include baptism or not? You have stated your position and I agree with what you and Mark have written regarding baptism. But then we also have your “let it alone” comment. Were you not referring to this whole post? Is it not true that you believe Mark should fry bigger fish, i.e. he should have spent his time writing something else and should not have even written this post?

Dr. Tomlin, Mark specifically stated in the beginning of his blog post, “I thought – Man! Now they’re even cooler…until I found out what they believe about the gospel” thus Mark’s major concern here is what they believe about the nature of the gospel. When you say, “Let it alone,” what else could “it” refer to other than the whole reason why Mark wrote this post? Please clear up any misunderstanding I may have about the nature of your “let it alone” comment.

Also, I find it humorous that you would accuse me of hyperbole and then end your last comment with, “You don’t tell everyone to be aware of the false prophets with long beards and camo clothing.” If your comment isn’t hyperbole, then it is certainly a straw man. That isn’t what Mark is doing at all.

Lastly, I mean you no malice or ill-will. I agree with you that tone is often lost in written communication. If you detect any sarcasm or disrespect, then I apologize in advance. That isn’t my intent at all. There is one more item I would like to point out to you, but I will wait until you answer these comments. If you are unable to get back with us until after the weekend, I understand. Have a good weekend with your family.

65 RKW March 22, 2013 at 10:12 pm

Thank you Mark for allowing this dialogue, and for giving me and others the opportunity to respond to your blog posts even when we differ. I hope such dialogue leads to all of us delving in to scripture to pursue the teachings of Jesus and his apostles. I think much can be gained when believers discuss differences respectfully, humbly and lovingly. As I said earlier, I think we who believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior share far more in common than differences.

66 Rachel March 22, 2013 at 10:21 pm

Dr. Tomlin, my comments about 1 Cor where it says “I was not not sent to baptize but to preach the gospel” was me addressing it, not bringing it up. Someone else asked about it (I forget who). In that chapter he was addressing the issue of people associating themselves with the one who baptized them rather than just associating themselves with Christ. People who he himself baptized were essentially bragging, as if the fact that Paul baptized them made them better than any other Christian. So when he says he is thankful he only baptized Crispus and Gaius he is saying he is glad there is a limited number of people saying ‘I am of Paul’ rather than ‘of Christ’. God sent him to preach. That is his role… To travel and preach the gospel. It is the responsibility of the members of the church to baptize those in need of baptism.

I would like to reiterate my points about the conversion of the apostle Paul. In Acts 9:17-18 it says “So Ananias departed and entered the house, and after laying his hands on him said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road by which you were coming, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” And immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he regained his sight, and he got up and was baptized; (NASB). Then in Acts 22:16 when his conversion story is being retold, it says “Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.’ (NASB). Now at this point in both verses Paul had already believed, confessed Christ, and had been fasting and praying for three days. Under your faith only doctrine, Paul should have had his sins forgiven and received the Holy Spirit the moment he believed three days prior to the dialogue in these verses. Furthermore, it is clear in chapter 9 that baptism is when he received the Holy Spirit because Ananias was sent there so that Paul could be filled with the Holy Spirit (indicating both that Paul did not already have the Holy Spirit and that Ananias’ presence was needed for it to be able to happen) and then he was immediately baptized. In chapter 22 Ananias’ dialogue makes it clear that Paul needed to have his sins forgiven through baptism. So how does your belief that your sins are forgiven and you get the Holy Spirit when you believe align with his conversion story? I think it’s pretty clear he needed to be baptized in order to have his sins forgiven and receive the Holy Spirit.

67 Mark March 23, 2013 at 11:54 am

RKW, thanks for your concluding words and for stopping by to engage. While I may not answer every comment I do try to let others freely have their say in most circumstances without censorship.

68 Gary March 27, 2013 at 5:19 pm

So, Mark, do you believe that the gospel + faith saves. And what about repentance. Is it the gospel + repentance? Or does the gospel just save everyone regards of trust and obedience?

69 Micah Burke March 27, 2013 at 8:43 pm

Gary, there’s some foundational presuppositions that have to be explained to answer your question.

The Bible tells us that apart from being born again, a person cannot even see the kingdom of heaven. (John 3:3) Thus before a person can perceive the things of God, they must be born again first. That is why Jesus says “that which is born of flesh is flesh, that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” You’re not born again by your own doing, or choosing, but by the power of God alone.

That being born again results in faith within the person. (Not the other way around.) This is expressed in John 1:12-13, Eph 2:1-10, and Romans 8:7-9. Prior to being born again, one is dead in trespasses and sins, unable (Romans 8:7-9) to submit to God’s law, and hates God, unless they’re made alive by the Spirit.

This being made alive by the Spirit is brought about by the hearing of the Gospel, (Rom 10:17), and is a supernatural work of God in a dead sinner.

That said, one can see that if God makes a dead sinner alive by the supernatural power of his grace, that sinner will, because of that new nature, respond in faith. Faith that trusts God and the Word of Christ recognizes sinfulness and repents. The faith and repentance is a result therefore of God’s working in the person. Repentance is a changed attitude of the individual toward sin, one that seeks for forgiveness and detests sin.

So, to put it more clearly… grace saves, through faith, which is not of ourselves, it is a gift of God, which leads to good works as a result (not the cause) of regeneration.

No one is saved who is not born again to a new life, trusting in Christ. No one is saved who does not have a heart and desire for repentance. But all of that is the work of God in the believer, it is not of ourselves whatsoever.

70 Randy Hefley April 14, 2013 at 11:21 am

Please reply with a scripture reference for the sinner’s prayer – oh, sorry – it doesn’t exist. Just another man-made idea. No person in scripture was ever saved by prayer.

71 D taylor April 14, 2013 at 3:07 pm

Over 150 times the one condition given by the Bible is to believe in Christ for eternal life. A person must interpret scripture by the very clear verses, so as to understand the more difficult verses. 99 time the Gospel of John mentions Belief is what a person must do to have eternal life, and that was the Book of the Bible written to people, to tell them what to do to have Eternal Life
John 20: 30, 31
20:30 Now Jesus performed many other miraculous signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not recorded in this book.
20:31 But these are recorded so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
Baptism was for a physical salvation from the up and coming judgement from God (70 A.D. by the hands of the Romans) for the sin of the blasphemy of the holy spirit committed by the nation of Israel. Acts 2: 38 speaks of this along with other verses when baptism is mentioned the church of christ people always take verses out of context to make the case for baptism as a part of salvation.

72 Dan April 16, 2013 at 11:34 pm

John 3:5

73 d taylor April 18, 2013 at 12:51 am

John 6: 28, 29
6:28 So then they said to him, “What must we do to accomplish the deeds God requires?”
6:29 Jesus replied, “This is the deed God requires – to believe in the one whom he sent.”

notice they ask what deeds and Jesus reply’s this is the deed (singular) no mention of anything else but belief

74 d taylor April 21, 2013 at 10:13 am

John 3:5 does not mention Baptism why post it

75 Rachel April 22, 2013 at 10:03 am

Mark, if you have time I would appreciate it if you would read what I posted about the conversion of the Apostle Paul and answer my questions. If we are saved when we believe, why wasn’t Paul? I’ll copy and paste the last thing I wrote about it so you don’t have to find it. If not Mark, I would love it if some one would respond to this. I’ve asked this question at least 4 separate times on this thread and no one (even people who had previously been responding to me and carrying on a conversation) has attempted to address this.

In Acts 9:17-18 it says “So Ananias departed and entered the house, and after laying his hands on him said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road by which you were coming, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” And immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he regained his sight, and he got up and was baptized; (NASB). Then in Acts 22:16 when his conversion story is being retold, it says “Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.’ (NASB). Now at this point in both verses Paul had already believed, confessed Christ, and had been fasting and praying for three days. Under your faith only doctrine, Paul should have had his sins forgiven and received the Holy Spirit the moment he believed three days prior to the dialogue in these verses. Furthermore, it is clear in chapter 9 that baptism is when he received the Holy Spirit because Ananias was sent there so that Paul could be filled with the Holy Spirit (indicating both that Paul did not already have the Holy Spirit and that Ananias’ presence was needed for it to be able to happen) and then he was immediately baptized. In chapter 22 Ananias’ dialogue makes it clear that Paul needed to have his sins forgiven through baptism. So how does your belief that your sins are forgiven and you get the Holy Spirit (salvation) when you believe align with his conversion story? I think it’s pretty clear he needed to be baptized in order to have his sins forgiven and receive the Holy Spirit.

76 Mark April 22, 2013 at 11:59 am

Rachel,

The point of this post was not to debate the doctrine of baptismal regeneration, but to point out what the CoC that the Duck Dynasty folks belong to believe. That is, those folks believe and preach a different way of salvation than Baptists, Presbyterians, Methodists, etc. It is so odd the way you write about my “faith only” doctrine. It’s as if you’ve never heard of sola fide, the Protestant Reformation, et al.

The Acts 22 passage you cite does not clearly state that the act of baptism forgives sins. “And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name” (Acts 22:16 ESV). Rather, it is the calling on Christ’s name.

Anyway, I’ll leave you with Is Baptism Necessary for Salvation? by Matt Slick.

77 Jake T. April 22, 2013 at 1:26 pm
78 Rachel April 22, 2013 at 1:44 pm

The point still stands, he was not saved when he first believed nor after three days of fasting and praying. Also, as I’ve stated before it matters not if any one’s doctrine is different than the doctrines of various and assorted denominations. Those were founded on the teachings and traditions of man. It only matters that what is being taught is consistent with the gospel message found in the bible. That is the biggest reason I don’t like denominational labels/associations. It takes the loyalty away from the bible and gives it to a specific earthly organization/unit.

“be baptized and wash away your sins” is pretty clear. It’s a cause and effect statement. Baptism is HOW you call on his name. Regardless of whether or not this verse explicitly states that baptism is what washed away his sins, you can’t tell me he was saved when he first believed. You can’t tell me he was saved after saying a prayer. He was not. He still needed the Holy Spirit and his sins forgiven three days after the fact. He was, however, commanded to “be baptized and wash away [his] sins, calling on his name”

Food for thought is all. It is evident that there is more to salvation that just believing in Jesus Christ or even saying a praying asking for salvation (especially when taking an in depth look at Paul’s conversion story). I am worried that your commitment to uphold the doctrines held by your denomination is more important to you than the search for truth or making sure that those teachings align with scripture. I don’t mean that in a mean or judgmental way but only to point out that you seem more offended that they disagree with your church than the possibility that they may disagree with your bible (statements such as “this goes against what we preach at the baptist church every week, etc). I will pray that you can forget your denominational ties and focus solely on the teachings found in scripture. After all, that is all that matters. That we all study with an honest and open mind and search for what God was trying to tell us through His word. If someone can prove to me that anything I believe or anything that is taught at my church is false (using scripture) then I (and the teachers at my church) will gladly change our tune to make sure we are always teaching and preaching honest, unbiased truth. I pray constantly that if I hold any misconceptions regarding the scripture that God would open my eyes to the truth. I honestly don’t care about being right or proving you or anyone else wrong. It is always with love and concern that I try to open people’s eyes to embrace the idea that there may be more to salvation than just a simple belief/acceptance in Jesus Christ. Because this is SO WIDELY taught and I honestly believe it is very evident in scripture that this is not the case and so many are being dangerously led astray.

We have the same goals: save as many souls as possible. Much Christianly love.

79 Mark April 22, 2013 at 2:18 pm

Rachel, simply saying the point still stands doesn’t mean the point stands. Much of what you said in your second paragraph is misguided. Why don’t you read some of the confessions or grab a systematic theology book? You don’t seem to understand sola fide, for example.

We might have the same goals in some sense, but different paths that go different places to attempt to arrive as said goals. If we have two different ways of salvation then some souls won’t be saved taking the wrong path. I have no more presented my disagreement with the CoC than they have with Baptists like me in their teachings.

80 Rachel April 22, 2013 at 2:50 pm

I couldn’t agree more with your second paragraph. That’s why it couldn’t more important to always study and evaluate and reevaluate our positions and how they align with scriptures. I’m sorry if my second paragraph seems misguided. This is the internet and there is always a large margin for error when it comes to impressions of people you’ve never met. My only point was that biblical teachings (and contradictions thereof) are the only thing that matters. Contradictions of the teachings of specific denominations are moot.

Do you disagree? Does the point not stand? Can you find valid proof that Paul was saved when he believed? Or even when he prayed? I can find valid proof that he was not yet saved even after all of this taking place. This says a lot. It is undeniable proof that belief alone is insufficient to justify. Unless you believe the standards for Paul were somehow different than our standards today. It lines up with Acts 2:38 “repent and be baptized for the forgiveness of your sins and you will receive the gift of the holy spirit” and 1 Peter 3:21 “Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you—not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience—through the resurrection of Jesus Christ” and Galatians 3:27 “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.” and Mark 16:16 “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.” Some will try and argue (when they can find no other way to deny these scriptures) that there is a spiritual baptism (done without water when a person believes) that these verses are referring to. But Ephesians 4:5 tells us that there is only ONE baptism. Your spiritual baptism and physical baptism in water are therefore simultaneous.

It all adds up. Faith is belief, but it also includes obedience. Obedience is not the same thing as works or attempting to “earn” your salvation through works. It must all be there for salvation to occur, and Paul is the perfect example of this. We can see clearly through scriptures that his faith alone was not enough to justify him. I understand the concept of sola fide, but I fail to see how to it aligns with the scriptures in the face of so much proof to the contrary.

At any rate, it is not my intention to debate/argue/offend but rather to make people think. There is nothing wrong with questioning your beliefs and checking and double checking that they align with scripture. In fact I believe it is quite healthy for your spiritual life. We are all human, including myself, and capable of making mistakes. Therefore, we should never assume that anything we’ve been taught is the truth simply because it is what we have always believed. I am always studying the scripture with an open eye, ready to absorb anything I may have previously missed. To the point that I even reevaluated my position on homosexuality (I arrived at the same conclusion. I believe it to be sinful. But someone presented me with an interesting argument about the Greek language concerning those verses and how they could be interpreted differently.) The idea that homosexuality might not be sinful was completely foreign to me, but I did extensive research on the subject just to confirm that what I believe was indeed what was being taught in scripture. I’ve also done extensive research on the concept of baptismal regeneration vs. sola fide and have found baptismal regeneration to be the most logical and consistent conclusion to come to.

I hope you’ll forgive any instance I may have seemed to carry an aggressive or accusatory tone. That was not my intention, but over the internet things can be and often are misinterpreted.

I pray we can all continue to study with an open heart and an open mind, willing to accept any truths found in scriptures. If any of us (including myself) has any misconceptions about the scriptures which need to be amended, I pray that pride will not prevent us from doing so.

Thanks for taking the time to respond to me and express your thoughts.

81 d taylor April 23, 2013 at 12:35 am

{Do you disagree? Does the point not stand? Can you find valid proof that Paul was saved when he believed? Or even when he prayed? I can find valid proof that he was not yet saved even after all of this taking place.}

Where is your proof that Paul was not saved on the road to Damascus. In Galatians 1: 11-17 he says he did not receive the gospel from men, but directly from Jesus Himself. He believed the gospel and received eternal life on the road to Damascus.
How do you know the term washing away your sins is referring to a person receiving spiritual salvation and not a physical salvation from the wrath of God from participating in the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit by the nation Israel. Saul was also a Palestinian Jew guilty of crucifying the Messiah. Paul needed after his salvation(receiving of eternal life) on the road to Damascus fellowship forgiveness what Ananias calls the washing away of sins.

what about the salvation of Cornelius clearly you can see here Cornelius received eternal life when he believed they received the Holy Spirit before they were baptized.
Acts 10: 43-48
10:43 About him all the prophets testify, that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”
10:44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell on all those who heard the message. 10:45 The circumcised believers who had accompanied Peter were greatly astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles, 10:46 for they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, 10:47 “No one can withhold the water for these people to be baptized, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?” 10:48 So he gave orders to have them baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to stay for several days.

take Mark 16:16 that you posted read the second have of the verse again what does it says whoever does not believe will be condemned. it does not not say whoever does not believe and is not baptized will be condemned. It says not believing condemns a person no where is baptism mention in the second half of the verse unless you read it into the verse which is wrong.

Mark 16:16 “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”

{It all adds up. Faith is belief, but it also includes obedience.}

Faith is trust and does not carry the idea of obedience that is a lordship salvation argument that faith includes the idea of obedience. And that faith includes obedience is not backed up by the Bible.
The only way faith can be made to include the idea of obedience is by taking verses out of their context.

I can show you over 100 times when a person receives or received eternal life in the Bible it is only by believing in the Christ.
That by probity of His death, burial, and resurrection, Christ gives eternal life to anyone who just believes in Him for it.

in all your points, are you thinking of the context and what and who the author is addressing for example 1 Peter 3:21.
What kind of salvation and deliverance does Peter have in mind? The type behind the antitype is the salvation of Noah and his family from physical death through the ark. The context has nothing to do with spiritual salvation from hell. Peter is speaking of again believers be saved here and now from the wrath of God for the sin of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit.

You should study about the sin of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit committed by the nation of Israel. It affects many of the Believers in the New testament. Peter speaks about its effect in Acts 2:40 where he warns them to save yourselves from this corrupt generation. Who is the corrupt generation(the nation of Israel), it is the ones who committed the sin of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit, many believers participated in the rejection and the crucifixion of Christ either by denying (as peter did of being a believer) or actually going along with the crucifixion of Christ. So they needed Baptism to bring them back into fellowship with believers and to escape Gods up and coming physical judgments and wrath of the corrupt nation that committed the sin of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit More can be learned about this from Dr Arnold Fruchtenbaum’s book Footsteps Messiah.

i would also study salvation and its uses in the Bible. When Salvation is used in the Bible does not always mean mean a spiritual salvation from hell. Many times it means a salvation from some physical danger in life of the believer, from either God (for disobedience) or from enemies of the Christ. Paul says in Romans 10:14 How are they to call on one they have not believed in? And how are they to believe in one they have not heard of? And how are they to hear without someone preaching to them ?

To call on the name of the Lord a person first must be a believer.

82 Rachel April 23, 2013 at 9:06 am

Mr. Taylor, thank you for your response. I do not believe in more than one salvation or more than one forgiveness of sins. I believe that all verses pertaining to salvation and the forgiveness of sins are talking about the same salvation: your spiritual salvation. I have not been presented with sufficient evidence to the contrary. So with that said I suppose it is inevitable that we will interpret some of these verses differently. Even still, Acts 9 makes it clear that Paul also did not yet have the Holy Spirit three days after meeting Jesus on the road to Damascus. Your only proof that he was saved on the road to Damascus is that he believed then which you assume means he was saved. But he was still without the Holy Spirit three days later and, I believe, also without the forgiveness of his sins.

I already explained quite in depth what happened to the household of Cornelius earlier in this thread. You are welcome to look closer towards the beginning of the comments to see the explanation there. It is a little long. The short version is this: the household of Cornelius received the gifts of the Holy Spirit in the same way the Apostles did on the day of Pentecost as a miraculous sign from God that salvation was now available to the Gentiles. They did not receive the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (which saves us). So when Paul says “No one can withhold the water for these people to be baptized, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?” what he really means is no one can refuse salvation to these have who received these gifts from God in the same way as we did. Prior to this salvation was only available to the Jews.

Now lets really break down Mark 16:16. Why would Jesus add a qualifier to “will be saved” that isn’t really necessary? That’s like telling someone “come over here and give me $3 and I’ll give you a box of girl scout cookies” when you’re really planning on giving it to them for free as soon as they show up. Why did you bring up the $3??? It’s also unnecessary to say that unbelievers who aren’t baptized will be condemned. Why would someone get baptized if they don’t even believe? I’ll give you this analogy. Taco Bell is having 50 cent taco day. The commercial says if you show up at Taco Bell and give them 50 cents, they’ll give you a taco. But if you don’t show up at Taco Bell, you won’t get a taco. Does this mean you can show up and not give them 50 cents and still get your taco? No. The taco isn’t free. That’s why they specifically said show up AND give them 50 cents. Does this mean you can go to Moe’s and give them 50 cents and they will give you a taco? No (they would just laugh at you because Moe’s is expensive). Can you call Taco Bell and ask them to deliver the taco and tell them you’ll pay them the 50 cents when they arrive at your house? No. The qualifiers for getting the taco were both “show up at Taco Bell” and “give us 50 cents” therefore, both of them must be present before you can get your taco. In the same way when Jesus says “whoever believes and is baptized will be saved” that is just what he means. Whoever believes AND is baptized will be saved. Therefore, if you believe but aren’t baptized will you be saved? No. Those who don’t believe won’t be saved, regardless of whether or not they get baptized. So he had no need to mention baptism in the latter half of the verse.

Now the word believe and faith are interesting. They are really just the closest words we had in the English language to convey what was being said in the Greek. But if you study James and Hebrews you’ll see something interesting.

Hebrews 11:17-40 (some verses were shortened using ellipses)
“By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac… By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau, even regarding things to come. By faith Jacob, as he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, and worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff. By faith Joseph, when he was dying, made mention of the exodus of the sons of Israel, and gave orders concerning his bones.

By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s edict. By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter… By faith he left Egypt… as seeing Him who is unseen. By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood… By faith they passed through the Red Sea as though they were passing through dry land…

By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. By faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient, after she had welcomed the spies in peace.

And what more shall I say? For time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets, who by faith conquered kingdoms, performed acts of righteousness, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. Women received back their dead by resurrection; and others were tortured, not accepting their release, so that they might obtain a better resurrection; and others experienced mockings and scourgings, yes, also chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were tempted, they were put to death with the sword; they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated (men of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts and mountains and caves and holes in the ground.

And all these, having gained approval through their faith, did not receive what was promised, because God had provided something better for us, so that apart from us they would not be made perfect.”

James 2:14-26 “What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself. But someone may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder. But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that faith without works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar? You see that faith was working with his works, and as a result of the works, faith was perfected; and the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “And Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness,” and he was called the friend of God. You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone. In the same way, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.”

You see where it says Abraham did those things by faith. It then says Abraham was justified by works. It then says Abraham believed God and it was reckoned to him as righteousness. You see faith and belief and obedience all go hand in hand.

Good day to you. I will continue to pray that we will all continue to study, seeking God with an honest heart and an open mind, willing to accept his truth.

83 d taylor April 24, 2013 at 12:54 am

Rachel a few thoughts on your post
{I do not believe in more than one salvation or more than one forgiveness of sins. I believe that all verses pertaining to salvation and the forgiveness of sins are talking about the same salvation: your spiritual salvation.}

So you do not believe in forgiveness of sins of a believer to bring that person back into fellowship with God. Are you saying a believer does not sin, that is after a person receives eternal life (born again) that person is no longer able to sin against God.
I ask that again because you say you do not believe in more than one forgiveness of sins.

Or do you believe that believer does not need forgiveness when he sins, if so how does that person again get back into fellowship with God.

Do you believe there exist a physical salvation from danger in the Bible. Either from the wrath of God for disobedience or from enemies of God.

what about 1 Timothy 2:15 is this a spiritual salvation or a physical salvation.
1 Timothy 2:15
15 But women will be saved through childbearing–if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.

Is Peter receiving a spiritual salvation or a physical salvation in Matthew 14
14:30 But when he saw the strong wind he became afraid. And starting to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”
14:31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?”

{I already explained quite in depth what happened to the household of Cornelius earlier in this thread. You are welcome to look closer towards the beginning of the comments to see the explanation there.}

i did not go back to see what you said i will just address the current comment.
part of your comment was
{They did not receive the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (which saves us). So when Paul says “No one can withhold the water for these people to be baptized, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?” what he really means is no one can refuse salvation to these have who received these gifts from God in the same way as we did. Prior to this salvation was only available to the Jews.}
you said {what he really means is no one can refuse salvation to these have who received these gifts from God}

The Verse says Gift singular not plural as you said Gifts. Peter is speaking about receiving the Holy Spirit (gift of the Holy Spirit) and not about gifts of the Holy Spirit. Only people who have received the Holy Spirit can have the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 10:45 The circumcised believers who had accompanied Peter were greatly astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles,

Mark 16:16 if baptism is required for receiving eternal life why did Jesus not mention it every time he spoke of receiving eternal life.
what about John 6:28, 29.
6:28 So then they said to him, “What must we do to accomplish the deeds God requires?”
6:29 Jesus replied, “This is the deed God requires – to believe in the one whom he sent.”

Jesus is asked what works(plural) should a person do and he replied by saying this is the work (singular) why would he not mention baptism if it was required for receiving eternal life. This is just one example of over 100 verses in the Bible that mention receiving eternal life solely by belief only. And these are all in there context where there is no question what the verse is saying. Why take a few verses and take them out of context to make them say something they do not mean.

Just take the last verses you posted from Hebrews and James you posted those books in the Bible are written to believers and they address In Hebrews they were second generation believers Hebrews 2:3-4 They like the author, were second generation believers. The readers and the author are united by the us in verse 3 and distinguished from those who were eyewitnesses. second they were Jewish. since the readers were respectful of Old Testament authority, the writer heavily quotes the Old Testament. They were Jewish believers. The main danger the author warns against is that of going back into Judaism. The author clearly treats them as believers for example in 3:1 and 12 the author calls them brethren, in 6:9, beloved, in 3:1 they are partakers of the heavenly calling which is unique to believers in 3:14 they are partakers of Christ. Certain warnings such as falling away due to an evil heart of unbelief and a hardening by the deceitfulness of sin as found in 3:12-13, are only applicable if the readers are believers.

The same can be said of James it is also addressed to believers

and these books do not promote a faith+works based salvation. If salvation is by belief only in the Gospel of John is is by belief only through out the whole Bible.
People who believe in a faith+works salvation are not distinguishing between a person receiving eternal life by faith and then the believers life after their justification, the sanctification process of a believer which does involve works of the believer and obedience etc…

84 Rachel April 24, 2013 at 9:53 am

No, the Christian does not need forgiveness when he sins. He doesn’t lose fellowship with God, either, and therefore doesn’t need to “get back in”. Romans 8:1-2 “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.” If you have time, Romans 4 & 5 (the whole chapters) do a pretty good job explaining the salvation system as a whole as well. I would recommend studying it.

I would really appreciate it if you would read the whole explanation about the household of Cornelius before continuing to question my understanding of it. It’s a really complex thing that can’t be adequately explained in a few short sentences. “…the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who were listening to the message. All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also. For they were hearing them speaking with tongues and exalting God.”
This was something that people could see. The Holy Spirit fell upon them and people were amazed. Leading them to the ability to be able to speak in tongues. This was a physical, observable thing happening here. When people are saved they get the Holy Spirit, yes, but no one can see it or observe it. If you read on in Acts 11 it says “And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them just as He did upon us [we apostles] at the beginning [Pentecost]. And I remembered the word of the Lord, how He used to say, ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’”. This is what is known as the baptism by the Holy Spirit (much different than baptism for the Holy Spirit) and it can only be seen twice in scriptures. Here with the household of Cornelius and over a decade prior with the Apostles on the day of Pentecost. These were both miraculous acts performed by God to make a statement and involved observable acts that people could see.

If baptism were not required for receiving eternal life, why mention it at all? You keep repeating the same thing that faith is mentioned over 100 times in the bible alone. Does this nullify any other thing mentioned in regards to salvation? Do we not also need to repent of our sins to be saved? Acts 2:38 “Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Or confess Christ? Romans 10:9 “that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved”.
Just because something is more prevalent in the bible does not mean that one thing cancels out anything else that is said in regards to our salvation. The bible does not contradict itself. Therefore if it says anything saves us, it saves us. Even if it only mentioned baptism once in regards to our salvation, we would still have to accept it as being part of our salvation, because it’s in the bible. All of the different requirements for salvation go hand in hand with one another and are all a part of your faith, not apart from it. Faith is mentioned very frequently, yes. But repentance is mentioned as being a part of your salvation. So is confession, and so is baptism. The latter three aren’t nullified because they aren’t mentioned as frequently as faith. You also have a misunderstanding of the biblical definition of faith (I’ll address that later though).

There are 11 conversion stories in the book of Acts. These are pretty much the only direct accounts we have in the bible of people getting saved under Christ’s New Covenant. The letters were all written to churches which had already been established and the gospels mostly accounted for the events leading up to the crucifixion (aka prior to the establishment of the New Covenant). In these 11 conversion stories we can observe 4 conditions taking place for these people to be saved: belief, confession, repentance, and baptism. In not a solitary episode are all the conditions of salvation explicitly stated. In only 6 of these instances is belief mentioned, it is implied in the remaining 5. Confession is explicitly mentioned only once, but the acknowledgment of faith is implied in the remaining 10. Repentance is mentioned in only 3 of them and implied in the rest. Baptism is stated in 10 of these cases, and implied only once.

I don’t see how Hebrews and James being written to believers would nullify the point I made. They’re speaking of people in the past-tense, relating their obedience to God to their faith and saying that that is what justified them. Again, the words faith and belief were really just the closest things in the English language to what was being said in the Greek. Biblical faith includes obedience; it is not just a simple mental acceptance of something to be true. Even the demons believe and shudder! People get biblical obedience and works confused with this system where we have to earn our salvation through good deeds. The gospel of John even defines faith as a work in 6:27-29 “Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.” Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.”” Never is baptism defined as a work by the bible itself, but rather assumed to be a work by people who refuse to accept its true meaning and purpose. Jesus himself defines believing in him as a work. But what kind of work? A work of GOD. You see there is a difference between doing the work of God and being obedient, and trying to EARN your salvation through works instead of relying on God’s grace to save you. Belief, confession, repentance, and baptism are all therefore works of God.

85 Kathy George April 26, 2013 at 9:55 pm

All speculation, haven’t heard anything of the kind come from the DD guys.

86 d taylor April 27, 2013 at 9:43 am

what happened to all the comments on this post

87 Mark Lamprecht April 27, 2013 at 4:24 pm

Hi d, my apologies for the missing comments. They still exist, but are hidden right now until the Disqus comment system completes the import. It is taking much longer than expected and I’m thinking of nuking the whole idea.

88 d taylor April 27, 2013 at 11:15 pm

Mark thanks for the reply. I was just hoping someone had not sabotage the site.

89 d taylor April 28, 2013 at 11:34 pm

the reason you can make confession, repentance, and baptism, all a part of a person receiving eternal life (a person’s salvation from hell) is that you ignore the Bibles context for verses. With that mind set a person can make the Bible say anything, the verses you use like Romans 10:9 is not a spiritual salvation verse but a physical salvation from danger, the context Romans 10:1-21 proves that beyond a doubt, whether you believe that or not, can not change the context of the verses. Here is a link to an article about Romans 10:9 http://www.faithalone.org/journal/1999ii/J23-99b.htm

As for these being works from God that is also not the case, for when on the cross Christ said it is finished he meant it is finished the work was done. When Christ came into Heaven he sat down at the right hand of God The Father, the work was done Ephesians 2:8 For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God; 2:9 it is not from works, so that no one can boast. This is saying the salvation is not of works either by man or by God it is a gift the work was done done by Christ living a sin less life here on earth keeping the law perfectly and then dying on the cross when Christ said it is finished the work came to a completion. Do works produced in us save. It is not just salvation by “human effort” which contradicts Paul but salvation by works produced in us, whether worked by God or by man.

Faith, there is no difference between the faith a person uses everyday and faith that the Bible speaks of. When a person Believes(trust) in Christ(only) for eternal life they receive the gift of eternal life from God. No human effort (confession, repentance, and baptism) is required. The demons believed and shutter, what makes them shutter their belief Their belief makes them shutter it does not save them because salvation is not offered to them salvation was for humanity only.

90 Rachel April 29, 2013 at 9:43 am

I’m sorry but I read Romans 10 and the whole article and can find no solid evidence that the bible ever speaks of more than one type of salvation. The one changing the context is you. Every time you see a verse that correlates salvation, forgiveness of sins, or anything else of that nature to salvation (basically anything you would have to otherwise disagree with) you invent this other type of “physical” salvation from danger for which there is no evidence of in the bible. There is only one salvation that God offers us, and it our eternal salvation with him in Heaven. In fact, the evidence for a physical salvation is quite the contrary. The bible promises the believer persecution and suffering on earth (2 Timothy 3:12 “Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.”) He never, ever promises or offers a physical salvation from danger. Only one of the apostles died of natural causes. The rest of them died violent, bloody deaths for their faith in Christ. If you read through Corinthians you can read through all of Paul’s hardships. 39 lashes. Stoned. Thrice shipwrecked. Bitten by snakes. There is no physical salvation from danger in the bible. There is no evidence to that effect. You saying that “the context proves it beyond a doubt” means nothing. I read it. There is nothing to suggest that there is more than type of salvation ever being mentioned in the bible. And since God makes it quite clear that we are not physically safe (due to our faith in Christ) it would be a blatant contradiction of scripture to interpret these verses in that way.

Yes, Christ completed the work for us on the cross. It was his actions that save us today, without it none would be saved. But we are still responsible for accepting the gift. God left us specific instructions in His word on how we go about doing so. It would be like if someone wrote you a check for a million dollars. You did nothing to earn the money, it was just given to you. But what do you need to do before you have access to your gift? You have to endorse the back of the check, drive to the bank, and deposit it into your account. Yes, the gift of salvation is free and we did nothing to earn it. But we still have to do the steps necessary in order to take advantage of the gift. Faith IS a human effort. And a hard one at that, sometimes. Everyone’s salvation is contingent upon themselves, even within the confines of faith only. A person must still believe (a work — of God) to be saved. Belief and faith in the bible imply action, or a response. You really need to study the Greek to have a proper understanding of it. It’s important to know that the bible was written in a language that is no longer in use today. Not everything is going to translate 100% perfectly, because we don’t always have the right words. For instance every time the word “believe” is used in the bible it is being translated as the verb form of the word used for “faith”. Because it doesn’t make sense to say in the English “I faith you” they translated it to “believe” but it’s a verb in the Greek which implies action or a response. Biblical faith is not merely mental acceptance that something is true, but also a response to the message. (Hebrews 5:9 “And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation”, Matt 7:21 “Not
everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven,
but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter”) It would be like if you were a surgeon and you knew how to perform a lifesaving surgery on someone but they are hesitant. And so you say to someone “if I can only get them to believe that this surgery will work, their life will be saved” well, is that really the end of it? Will they be saved the moment they accept the surgeons words and tell him they want the surgery? Or does the surgeon not still have to complete the operation before the persons life is truly saved? It is the same concept in the bible. When they say you need to believe to be saved what it really means “accept the message that I am presenting to you, and respond to it in its entirety, and you will be saved.” The moment you believe you are headed towards salvation, just like the patient when he accepts his need for surgery. But you still have to do what God says (repent, confess, be baptized) in order to be saved or “let the surgeon operate” before you are truly saved. God is the great physician, but he cannot save you if you only get as far as accepting your need for surgery, but never lay down on his operating table.

At any rate, I have enjoyed conversing with you and I appreciate your responses to my thoughts but it has gotten to the point where I am not sure it is entirely productive for us to continue. It is like we are reading the bible in two different languages. As long as you continue reading a “physical salvation from danger” into all of these verses pertaining to salvation, there is no way we are ever going to be able to have a productive conversation. Because the points I’m trying to make (that these things are necessary to salvation) are meaningless to you as long as you believe in more than one salvation in the bible. And your points are meaningless to me as long I believe in just the one salvation. I hope you will take my explanation of why I do not accept more than salvation in the bible into consideration. If you come to the conclusion as I have that salvation in the bible always refers to eternal life in Christ (because God never promises us physical salvation) then I would love to continue this conversation. Otherwise, I fear we will simply continue to talk in circles. There are certain things which must be agreed upon by both parties to be true in order for “proof texts” to be at all useful. I feel there are too many fundamental differences in our beliefs concerning the bible at this time for either of us to effectively prove our points because the other is always going to interpret the verses used by the other party differently based on our beliefs concerning salvation in the bible. Have a good day. I will continue to pray for us both, the we will be able to continue studying His word with an honest and open mind and that if either us has any misconceptions regarding the scriptures, that God will open our minds enough that we can see this and make the changes necessary to correct it.

91 Rachel April 29, 2013 at 2:28 pm

A little long, but this article addresses each and every biblical question that I’ve read throughout this thread. Further resources linked at bottom. Give it a shot, it’s good stuff. Would love to know anyone’s thoughts after reading it.
http://www.gospelway.com/salvation/salvation_by_faith.php

92 d taylor May 5, 2013 at 5:56 pm

He has (in the story he tells on this youtube clip) this person come all the way from Alabama to be baptized, He refers to this as the gospel. This person he was talking to could have been given the gospel over the phone no need for him to drive 3 hours to hear the gospel unless he believes that baptism is part of receiving eternal life.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=DApqTMJYGMU

93 d taylor May 5, 2013 at 6:00 pm

Just more of the same with Bible verses being taken out of context to make the case for a faith plus work salvation which is realy a work based salvation.

94 r phillips May 5, 2013 at 7:37 pm

I’m curious to know what makes you think baptism is a work? Even Martin Luther who was so committed to the faith only doctrine he actually augmented the bible to help his case.. Adding the word ‘alone’ to Paul’s words in Romans and throwing out the books of James altogether… Understood the necessity of baptism. The bible itself defines baptism as a work of God which goes hand in hand with faith in Colossians 2:12 ‘raised through faith in the working of God’
I really don’t get why people get so hung up on this idea that baptism is somehow a works based salvation. There is nothing we do in baptism. It’s a completely passive experience in which God does the work.

95 Mark Lamprecht May 5, 2013 at 10:02 pm

r phillipsYou can’t lump Luther’s doctrine of baptism in with that of CoC folks. Luther taught sola fide while the material I quoted denied sola fide. The pamphlet I quoted even said that one who holds to faith alone should be re-baptized while conscientiously receiving salvation – I guess to make sure it takes?
Again, the whole point of my post was to clearly show that the Duck Dynasty folks’ church clearly teaches in contradiction to what Protestants hold too. Especially, in mind are Southern Baptists, since I am one and since that seems to be the majority denomination the DD folks are promoted by.

96 d taylor May 5, 2013 at 11:56 pm

can not get my post to post tried this short message to see if it would post

97 d taylor May 5, 2013 at 11:58 pm

i am going to breal up reply into short post
well baptism is not faith,  so if it is not faith then it must be a work. Faith is trust, if i told you tomorrow i will give you $1000.00,  you either believe my promise or you do not, their is no middle ground nothing else needs to be added to you believeing my statement. Just like Gods statement that whoever believes in Christ for eternal life is given it. unlike my promise where i may or may not give you a $1000.00 dollars tomorrow. Gods promise of eternal life  is 100% true/trustworthy. no way a person can spin it faith is not baptism, obedience, etc….

98 d taylor May 6, 2013 at 12:00 am

From the book  Confident in Christ:  Anyway the word baptism does not mean immersion in water the term itself doesn’t refer either to sprinkling or immersion in water. The noun baptisma, translated or actually transliterated baptism most often refers not to Christian baptism, but to the baptism of John. And, even when baptisma does refer to Christian water baptism, it is not the designation baptisma all by itself which tells us this. It is only when immersion in water is indicated in the context that we conclude that water baptism is in view.

99 d taylor May 6, 2013 at 12:00 am

The truth of this is indisputable when we consider that baptisma is often used figuratively in the New Testament. Authors of scripture quote Jesus five times referring to His approaching death as a baptism which He dreaded (Luke 12:50  Matthew 20:22,23 etc..  )  Paul also speaks of a figurative use of the word baptize with the nation of Israel being baptized into Moses. It was the Egyptians who got wet not the Israelites. So the basic sense of the term, a sense which includes both figurative and literal uses, is “to identify with,””to be placed into,” or “to be immersed in.”   The context must reveal whether the usage is figurative or literal and what it is that one is being identified with, placed into, or immersed in.

100 r phillips May 6, 2013 at 7:11 am

There is not a single verse that says we are saved by faith alone. There are many verses that speak of our faith saving us, yes, but it never once says ‘alone’. There are also verses that say repentance saves, confession saves, and… wouldn’t you know it… baptism saves. In fact, the only time the phrase “faith alone” or “faith only” shows up in the bible it clearly states that we are NOT justified by faith alone in James 2.

101 r phillips May 6, 2013 at 7:18 am

You’re right there is a difference in the way Luther taught baptism and the way the bible teaches baptism and ironically Martin Luther taught it as more of an actual work than the bible and the CoC does even though he was so opposed to ‘works’
Mostly I was just wondering why you insist on lumping baptism in with works and saying if baptism is necessary for salvation it is a works based salvation. The only time works is used in the bible in connection to

102 d taylor May 6, 2013 at 8:42 am

The Gospel of John, which was written after the birth of the church to tell church age people how they might have eternal life (born again) John 20: 30-31 does not even contain the word baptism while the verb form to baptize does appear none of its occurrences suggest baptismal regeneration although in contrast the word believe occurs 99 times when a condition for receving eternal life.

103 r phillips May 6, 2013 at 9:19 am

d taylorSo baptism can’t be necessary for salvation because it wasn’t mentioned in 2 verses in the book of John? Ever heard of hermeneutics? What did the sign above Jesus’ cross at his crucifixion read?

Mark 15:26: The inscription of the charge against Him read, “THE KING OF THE JEWS.”
Luke 23:38: Now there was also an inscription above Him, “THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.”
Matthew 27:37: And above His head they put up the charge against Him which read, “THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS.”
John 19:19: Pilate also wrote an inscription and put it on the cross. It was written, “JESUS THE NAZARENE, THE KING OF THE JEWS.”
So does the bible contradict itself or can we conclude that each account included information that was deemed important, but no isolated account contains ALL of the information. In the same way there is no isolated verse that you can point to that tells us what is necessary for salvation. Yes there are many verses that talk about faith saving us but it NEVER says “faith alone” saves us. Additionally there are many verses which speak of baptism as giving us the holy spirit, forgiving us our sins, clothing us in Christ, uniting us with his death, and saving us!

104 r phillips May 6, 2013 at 10:46 am

Mark Lamprecht also read the below articles explaining why baptism, unless the context suggests otherwise, should always be interpreted in the bible as a physical immersion in water. Ephesians 4:5 states there is only one baptism for the believer. We know by reading the conversions in Acts that immersion in water was practiced by New Covenant Christians. We know the baptism of the Holy Spirit was only seen twice in Acts 2 (apostles) and in Acts 10 (household of Cornelius) and was accompanied by miraculous signs. Therefore, baptism for the believer is ones physical immersion in water. Explain Romans 6:1-6, 1 Peter 3:21, Colossians 2:12, Galations 3:27, et al. under the faith only doctrine without changing the context to make it a “spiritual baptism” rather than a physical immersion in water. You can’t do it! The issue is twofold: the incorrect categorization of baptism as “works” and the incorrect interpretation of baptism as being a spiritual baptism apart from ones immersion in water. The events are simultaneous. The bible says we are saved by faith, but it never says we are saved by faith alone. You are adding that to the verses you quote, whether intentionally or not, to make it say something it doesn’t. Read through the conversions in Acts. If it were a “public proclamation of faith” as many baptists say that it is… then why were these converts baptized immediately? Sometimes in the middle of the night? They did not wait a month for “baptism Sunday” they did not wait to invite their friends and family. They did not even wait to do it before the whole church. They did it immediately, as soon as they understood and believed the message, with a sense or urgency. Paul was also still in his sins after meeting Jesus on the road to Damascus and was ordered three days later to “be baptized for the forgiveness of his sins”. If he were saved by faith alone his sins should have been forgiven the moment he believed. Alas, he was still in his sins three days later.

https://www.christiancourier.com/articles/1498-do-romans-6-3-4-and-galatians-3-26-27-refer-to-spirit-baptism
http://s8int.com/saved2.html

105 d taylor May 6, 2013 at 6:01 pm

The peope who try to make baptism a part of a person receiving eternal life,  always use verses from the Bible that are not addressing a person receiving eternal life(salvation from hell), but those verses are for the discipleship area of a belivers life. just take 1 Peter what is one of the first things Peter writes in this letter  1:1 From Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to those temporarily residing abroad (in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, the province of Asia, and Bithynia) who are chosen 1:2 according to the foreknowledge of God the Father by being set apart by the Spirit for obedience and for sprinkling with Jesus Christ’s blood. May grace and peace be yours in full measure!  These letters are to believers addressing discipleship these letters are not to unbelievers the same can be said of James, Hebrews, etc.. Most of the New Testament is for believers and their life of discipleship.

106 r phillips May 7, 2013 at 5:21 pm

Galatatians 3:27, Colossians 2:12, and Romans 6:1-7 all speak of baptism in the past tense as the point in which the believer became unified with Christ. We know this is referring to water baptism for two reasons: the baptism of the Holy Spirit only occurs twice in the NT (Acts 2 and Acts 10,11) and was evidenced by miraculous signs such as speaking in tongues. This was also not a salvific baptism but rather a miraculous sign from God. Two: Ephesians 4:5 tells us plainly there is only one baptism (relevant to the New Covenant Christian). We know water baptism was practiced under the New Covenant, therefore it must be water baptism. Another point to consider is the fact that baptism is a command (Matt 28:19, Acts 2:38, Acts 22:16) whereas the baptism of the Holy Spirit is an involuntary experience that happens to the believer. You can’t be commanded to do something which happens to you involuntarily. Therefore baptism in these verses must be interpreted as water baptism.

107 d taylor May 7, 2013 at 10:35 pm

Galatatians 3:27, Colossians 2:12, and Romans 6:1-7 this is the problem you are linking verses together along with Acts 2 and 10 what does Galatatians have to do with whats going on in Acts.  Galatatians is written by Paul to again believers    Galatatians 1:1 From Paul, an apostle (not from men, nor by human agency, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father who raised him from the dead) 1:2 and all the brothers with me, to the churches of Galatia. 1:3 Grace and peace to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ,   in defence of the faith based gospel,   Galatatians  1:6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are following a different gospel – 1:7 not that there really is another gospel, but there are some who are disturbing you and wanting to distort the gospel of Christ.
Look at Matthew 28:19 the verse is speaking about making disciples (the word disciples is right in the verse) not giving unbelievers the gospel so they may have eternal life. This is a verse speaking about making disciples and baptism is connected with that area of a believers life after they have believed in Christ for eternal life to become a disciple now requires a believer being baptised.

108 r phillips May 7, 2013 at 10:59 pm

Did you read what I wrote before coming up with a defense? If you had, you would know that I was contrasting the contexts in Acts with the context in Galatians. In Acts 2 we read about the baptism of the Holy Spirit, as evidenced by miraculous signs such as speaking in tongues. Galatians, Colossians, and Romans are all referring to Christian baptism (in water). The only reason I brought up Acts 2 and Acts 10,11 was to make the point that the baptism of the Holy Spirit was a miraculous event limited to those two instances and not available to all Chrisians. Water baptism, however was practiced under the New Covenant and we know from Eph 4:5 there is only one baptism for the New Covenant believer, therefore all of these verses reference water baptism. I don’t understand why you are belaboring the point that these books were written to believers as if that somehow changes the points I made. The authors of these passages are speaking of baptism in the *past tense* these are not instructional verses but rather they explain what happened to the believer during their baptism in further detail. Clothed with Christ, buried into Christ’s death, raised to walk in newness of life… Obviously baptism was a pivotal point in these believers lives. Also disciple is just a fancy word for follower of Christ, in other words a Christian. So Matt 28:19 is absolutely speaking about spreading the gospel to unbelievers.

109 d taylor May 9, 2013 at 12:17 am

Galatatians 3:27, Colossians 2:12  and Romans 6:1-7 are Holy Spirit baptisms
Again i say you are taking verses out of context and linking them together to make a point (that you believe baptism is added to belief to receive eternal life). all the verses are from letters that are to people who are already believers. So these letters are addressing the areas of the believers life like discipleship, obedience, repentance , also some of the letters are addressing believers that are wanting to return to their former practice of Judaism   They are not telling believers what they must do to have eternal life.   I do not deny that there is a comand to be baptised.  i just deny that it is required for a person to receive eternal life.

110 r phillips May 9, 2013 at 6:24 am

Holy Spirit baptism were two isolated, miraculous events which were accompanied by miraculous signs such as speaking in tongues. You are adding a baptism to the gospel by insisting these verses refer to Holy Spirit baptism. Eph 4:5 tells us there is only one baptism and we know baptism occurs in water in at least two of the conversions in acts therefore WATER baptism is the baptism which applies to the new covenant Christian.
You are right these verses are not telling believers how to receive eternal life but describing in further detail the event in which they got it. Describing how they became united with Christ and his death. How they were clothed with Christ. Raised to walk in newness of life. Dead to sin. They are describing their baptisms! Their ONE baptism in water!

111 Steve May 9, 2013 at 10:38 pm

“nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified.” Galatians 2:16

112 Steve May 9, 2013 at 10:38 pm

“nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of [fn]the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of [fn]the Law; since by the works of [fn]the Law no [fn]flesh will be justified.” Gal 2:16

113 r phillips May 9, 2013 at 10:48 pm

Good thing baptism is a work of God through faith and not the work of the law! (Col 2:12)

114 LissaW May 10, 2013 at 12:29 pm

They preach baptism is essential because Jesus Christ said to do it to be saved. So then why would you not do it if Jesus told you to. That’s being rebellious against the bible if you don’t do what it says! Those who believe and are baptized shall be saved. Mark 16:16

115 d taylor May 11, 2013 at 12:18 pm

you say (Eph 4:5 tells us there is only one baptism and we know baptism occurs in water in at least two of the conversions in acts therefore WATER baptism is the baptism which applies to the new covenant Christian.)
I am not adding a baptism what i am doing is saying there is a baptism of/by the Holy Spirit in the early church.  for Jewish believers(Jews who have received eternal life) water baptism was required this special group of people needed to repent and be baptized (water) for the “forgiveness of sins” AND to receive the Holy Spirit. That was God’s requirement for them to be in fellowship with Him. It was only true at a particular time (the transitional time from the Old to the New Testament) and only for a certain group of people. You never see it among Gentile believers even at that time in history.

water baptism in Acts the early Jewish Believers are required to undergo  baptism not for receiving eternal life but as a part of their coming out of Judaism and for being a part of the sin of the blasphemy of the holy spirit

The unique setting of Acts 22:16. Luke records the conversion account of Saul three times in Acts (Acts 9, 22, 26). However, only once did Luke relate Ananias’s demand for baptism with the washing away of sins. It is significant that the single occurrence was before a Jewish crowd in the Temple area in Jerusalem. Accordingly, the same general audience which heard Acts 2:38 also heard Acts 22:16. People who believe in salvation by baptism  failed to find a single defender of this view who produced a passage in Acts which addresses Gentiles with a demand to be baptized with the specific purpose of receiving the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Gentile Cornelius, in Acts 10, is promised the forgiveness of sins upon believing, and receives the Holy Spirit before he was baptized. There is nothing in Acts to contradict this as a pattern for Gentiles.   Neither Acts 2:38 nor 22:16 is binding today. They are unique to the first century Palestinian. Only in this way can we take 2:38 and 22:16 at face value and yet avoid contradicting the Gospel of justification by grace through faith alone

116 d taylor May 11, 2013 at 12:26 pm

Colossians 2:12 Having been buried with him in baptism, you also have been raised with him through your faith in the power  of God who raised him from the dead.
Where does any ideas of baptism being a work of God come from this verse. The verse actually says a believer is raised through their faith in God,  what it is saying is God raised Christ out of the grave so as believers we can be sure that because of our faith God will also raise us.

117 d taylor May 11, 2013 at 1:28 pm

Vrey good write up on what is going on in the early Jewish believers  http://www.faithalone.org/journal/1998ii/J21-98c.htm

118 d taylor May 11, 2013 at 1:35 pm

lets take a few unclear verses and ignore over 100 very clear verses and base our Bible understanding on those few unclear verses.

119 r phillips May 11, 2013 at 8:52 pm

First, as I have already explained, what happened to the household of Cornelius was a miraculous event. It was a sign from God that salvation was available even to the Gentiles. The Holy Spirit fell while Peter was still speaking, he a hadn’t yet finished preaching to them. It was accompanied by miraculous signs such as speaking in tongues. It was an observable event. This was not the indwelling of the Holy Spirit which saves. That is an inward event that no one can see or observe. It was not a baptism for salvation. We know this because it fell upon all who heard the word. Peter had brought believers with him and the spirit poured upon them as well. After the spirit fell, Peter’s words were “Can anyone withhold water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” (Acts 10:47 ESV). In Acts 8 the Ethiopian Eunich was preached the gospel and asked to be baptized as soon as they came upon water. So you see, water baptism was practiced for Jews and Gentiles alike. Water baptism was not exclusively for the Jews. It was practiced for ALL new covenant believers and it still applies to us today. There is only ONE BAPTISM for all believers, Jews or Gentiles, that is the baptism practiced under the New Covenant — water baptism! Even if the verses don’t state that the Gentiles in Acts are being baptized for the purpose of forgiveness of sins and the Holy Spirit we still know they only received one baptism from Eph 4:5 (because Ephesians was written to Gentiles), and we know they practiced water baptism. So you are still adding a baptism to the gospel. The bible states that there is one gospel for the both the Jew and the Greek “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” (Romans 1:16 ESV). There is no biblical evidence that there is a separate gospel message for Jews and Gentiles. Galatians 3:27 states “For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” And then in the very next verse goes on to say… “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” In Acts 2:38 when the Jews are commanded to repent and be baptized for the forgiveness of sins Peter goes on to say “For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” (Acts 2:39 ESV). In Ephesians two he describes the Gentiles as being ‘those who are far off’… “But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13 ESV). Jews and Greeks received the same gospel message and they received the same baptism.

120 d taylor May 11, 2013 at 11:41 pm

your explanation does not agree with the Bibles account.
You said (The Holy Spirit fell while Peter was still speaking, he a hadn’t yet finished preaching to them.)
That is the way it is with receiving eternal life.  It is received at the moment a person believes that Christ is the giver of eternal life to all who will believe in Him for it.  There are no requirements like the sermon must be finished first, a person must walk a church aisle, a person must be baptised, a person must turn from their sins, a person must say a sinners prayer etc.. what ever you want to add to faith it is not a part of a person receiving eternal. After a person has believed (in a second of time) every amount of time after the person received eternal life is in the area of sanctification(up untill their death) then moving into the area of glorification.

121 d taylor May 12, 2013 at 12:00 am

Obviously you do not believe Christ gives eternal life to all who believe in Him for it.  You believe eternal life is given by baptism the problem there is,  not a single verse in the Bible  says that.

122 r phillips May 12, 2013 at 6:24 am

And there is not a single verse in the bible that says we are saved by faith alone. You are adding that to these verses. Just because the bible says something to be true that doesn’t mean it is to the exclusion of everything else. Your faith absolutely saves you. If you have true faith you will follow his word and obey his commands. You will confess, repent, and be baptized. You won’t question his commands and whether they are really necessary. You will be saved because you believed, because believers would obey the message.
Acts 2:38, Acts 22:16, Col 2:12, Gal 3:27, Rom 6:1-7, 1 Peter 3:21 all prove that baptism is where: you get forgiveness of sins, the gift of Holy Spirit, you are saved, clothed in Christ, buried into his death and raised to walk in newness of life. We’ve already established that there is one gospel message for Jews and Gentiles alike and that there is also only one baptism for the new covenant Christian. All those things occur while the believer is being baptized in water. You can continue denying scripture and adding your own baptism of/by the Holy Spirit to these verses if you want, but have fun explaining it to God one day. I will pray for you!

123 d taylor May 13, 2013 at 1:50 am

Bible links the Spirit with the believer in three different ways: 1. at the time of belief    2. at the time of baptism  3. with laying on of hands  This diversification should warn us against dogmatism in the matter. Acts is not intended to teach a set pattern, but to describe the dynamic movement of the Spirit.
Acts 1:5 For John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
I could have posted many more but these verses all teach receiving eternal life by belief only
John
3:11 I tell you the solemn truth, we speak about what we know and testify about what we have seen, but you people do not accept our testimony.
3:16 For this is the way God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.
3:18 The one who believes in him is not condemned. The one who does not believe has been condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God.
3:36 The one who believes in the Son has eternal life. The one who rejects the Son will not see life, but God’s wrath remains on him.
4:10 Jesus answered her, “If you had known the gift of God and who it is who said to you, ‘Give me some water to drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.”
4:14 But whoever drinks some of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again, but the water that I will give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up to eternal life.”
4:39 Now many Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the report of the woman who testified, “He told me everything I ever did.”
4:41 and because of his word many more believed.
4:42 They said to the woman, “No longer do we believe because of your words, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this one really is the Savior of the world.”
4:53 Then the father realized that it was the very time Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live,” and he himself believed along with his entire household.
5:24 “I tell you the solemn truth, the one who hears my message and believes the one who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned, but has crossed over from death to life.
5:38 nor do you have his word residing in you, because you do not believe the one whom he sent.
5:39 You study the scriptures thoroughly because you think in them you possess eternal life, and it is these same scriptures that testify about me,
5:40 but you are not willing to come to me so that you may have life.
6:27 Do not work for the food that disappears, but for the food that remains to eternal life – the food which the Son of Man will give to you. For God the Father has put his seal of approval on him.”
6:28 So then they said to him, “What must we do to accomplish the deeds God requires?”
6:29 Jesus replied, “This is the deed God requires – to believe in the one whom he sent.”
6:35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. The one who comes to me will never go hungry, and the one who believes in me will never be thirsty.
6:40 For this is the will of my Father – for everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him to have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.”
6:47 I tell you the solemn truth, the one who believes has eternal life.
6:50 This is the bread that has come down from heaven, so that a person may eat from it and not die.
6:51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats from this bread he will live forever. The bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”
7:38 let the one who believes in me drink. Just as the scripture says, ‘From within him will flow rivers of living water.’”
7:39 (Now he said this about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were going to receive, for the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.)
20:30 Now Jesus performed many other miraculous signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not recorded in this book.
20:31 But these are recorded so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

124 r phillips May 13, 2013 at 6:16 am

You keep saying faith alone saves… the bible never says that. Ever. You are adding the word “alone” to the verses you use, whether intentionally or not.
The bible saying something is accomplished by something is not necessarily to the exclusion of anything else. It would be like if someone moved back in with their parents after college and they have younger siblings that live there too. Well if someone asked him “who do you live with” he would probably say “I’m currently living with my parents” but that doesn’t make the fact that he is also living with his siblings any less true. Or if you say ‘my car gets me from point A to point B’ that might be true, but it doesn’t do it alone it still needs gasoline, oil, radiator fluid, etc. Faith is like the vehicle of your salvation. Confession, repentance, and baptism are like your gasoline, oil and radiator fluid.
Many verses talk about faith saving you yes, but it never says it does it to the exclusion of obedience. Whenever they translate a word as believe in the bible it is actually the verb form of the word they translate as faith. It implies action or a response to the message. Many verses prove that those who lack obedience will not be saved. Simply accepting God’s existence is not enough.
“So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 10:32, 33 ESV)
“Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 7:21 ESV)
“…in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might…” (2 Thessalonians 1:8, 9 ESV)
“He will render to each one according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury.” (Romans 2:6-8 ESV)
And finally the ONLY verse that uses the phrase “faith alone” or faith only” in the bible… “You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone”. (James 2:24 ESV)
Also as a side note Acts 1:5 was foretelling the baptism of the Holy Spirit (Acts 11:16), the miraculous and isolated event that only happened to the apostles on the day of Pentecost and at the household of Cornelius. Christian baptism (the one and only baptism) takes place in water.

125 d taylor May 13, 2013 at 9:10 pm

http://www.livefyre.com/profile/14030012/  (You keep saying faith alone saves… the bible never says that. Ever. You are adding the word “alone” to the verses you use, whether intentionally or not.)
http://www.livefyre.com/profile/14030012/  And finally the ONLY verse that uses the phrase “faith alone” or faith only” in the bible… “You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone”. (James 2:24 ESV)
Here is an article about this topic   http://www.faithalone.org/journal/1996ii/Wilkin.html
About Matthew 7:21 that you posted look at what the verse is saying i will post 7:21 , 22 and 23 so as you can see what is being said.
7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter into the kingdom of heaven – only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.
7:22 On that day, many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, and in your name cast out demons and do many powerful deeds?’
7:23 Then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you. Go away from me, you lawbreakers!’
7:21 says: only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. what is the will of my Father a person can know what the will of the Father is by reading   John 6:40 For this is the will of my Father – for everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him to have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.”
notice who is is given the “I never knew you” statement the ones who are trusting in works: didn’t we prophesy in your name, and in your name cast out demons and do many powerful deeds
2 Thessalonians 1:8, 9 not sure if you are pushing the idea of obedience from this verse or not. If so obedience is conected to the area of discipleship. concerning this verse it proves noting toward salvation by works. Because the context is addressing  encouragement in persecution for believers.
Romans 2:1-5 is important for several reasons. First, it helps us to understand that there is a break in the thought be-tween Rom 2:5 and 2:6. Not a radical break in the thought, of course. But a significant one. In 2:6-16, Paul proceeds to the issue of the final judgment of the unrighteous. Of course, there is no such judgment for those who are righteous by faith, since no charge can be brought against them (see Rom 8:33).
full article here http://www.faithalone.org/journal/2005i/hodges.pdf

126 r phillips May 13, 2013 at 9:36 pm

Again I will pray for you that you will be able to see past your denominational bias and read the bible as a whole instead of taking a few verses and believing what they say and ignoring all the others which you disagree with. One gospel, one baptism. Romans 10:9-10 even says confession results in salvation. I urge you to study the Greek and what the words and faith and belief mean in the their language.

127 r phillips May 13, 2013 at 10:04 pm

No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. (Luke 13:3 ESV) <– repentance is necessary for salvation
So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 10:32, 33 ESV) <– confession

128 d taylor May 14, 2013 at 12:09 am

Luke 13:3 look at the verse after Luke 13:3
13:4 Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower in Siloam fell on them, do you think they were worse offenders than all the others who live in Jerusalem?
Jesus is speaking about physical death if these Jews do not repent they will experience physical death and during 70 a.d. thousands died
Great article on Romans 10:9  I have allready posted this once but will post it again for your benefit.
http://www.faithalone.org/journal/1999ii/J23-99b.htm
I would also suggest reading by Joseph Dillow The Reign of the Servant Kings http://www.amazon.com/Reign-Servant-Kings-Joseph-Dillow/dp/1564530957
Also final destiny by Joseph Dillow same book as servant kings but updated with more infromation
http://www.amazon.com/Final-Destiny-Future-Reign-Servant/dp/098567380X

129 d taylor May 14, 2013 at 12:51 am

Isaiah 64:6 We are all like one who is unclean, all our so-called righteous acts are like a menstrual rag in your sight. We all wither like a leaf; our sins carry us away like the wind.

130 r phillips May 14, 2013 at 6:53 am

Alright look. You’ve already admitted that Acts 2:38 is referring to repentance and baptism in water as necessary for forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Roms 8:9 proves we can’t be saved without the spirit. The very next verse proves that this message applies to all New Covenant believers, not just the early Jews.
“And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” (Acts 2:38, 39 ESV)
“But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13 ESV)
If you want to keep making things up in order to deny the scriptures such as a physical salvation from danger, a baptism of/by the Holy Spirit in addition to the Christian’s one baptism in water, and a separate gospel message for the Jews and Gentiles be my guest. But I will continue to pray for you to come to repentance and accept all the bible commands, not just the verses that talk about faith. Obedience is surely necessary… “And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him” (Hebrews 5:9 ESV)

131 ShawneleShawSurplus May 15, 2013 at 4:18 pm

You say that the churches of Christ teach gospel + baptism, but they teach, as does Scripture, that the gospel INCLUDES baptism.  He who believes and is baptized shall be saved.  Would you say that that verse teaches the gospel + belief?

132 ShawneleShawSurplus May 15, 2013 at 4:26 pm

d taylorWhat are the unclear verses?
Acts 2:38 ESV
And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the
name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will
receive the gift of the .

Acts 22:16 ESV
And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name. 
Mark 16:16 ESV
Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

Romans 6:4 ESV
We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that,
just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we
too might walk in newness of life.

Matthew 28:19 ESV
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the ,

John 3:5 ESV
Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 
Colossians 2:12 ESV
Having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised
with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him
from the dead.

Romans 6:3-4 ESV
Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus
were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by
baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the
dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. 
Galatians 3:27 ESV
For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 
1 Peter 3:21 ESV  Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ

133 ShawneleShawSurplus May 15, 2013 at 5:42 pm

d taylorThat’s what Philip believed: Actas 8:35 Then Philip began with that very passage of Scripture and told him the good news about Jesus. 36 As
they traveled along the road, they came to some water and the eunuch
said, “Look, here is water. What can stand in the way of my being
baptized?”
The “good news about Jesus” includes teaching baptism.

134 d taylor May 15, 2013 at 9:47 pm

these verses are unclear because over 100 times when a condition is given for eternal life the only condition is belief / faith/ trust in Christ. with that said a person can see that eternal life is by faith (an event that occurs in just a second of time as long as it takes for a person to believe)
so if receiving etrenal life is by belief, then when there are a few verses that add other conditions to what seems like a verse refering to salvation (from hell) when studied in its context a person can see that this is not speaking about receiving eternal life but that these verses are in relation to a believers sanfication and not their eternal life salvation. Just because you see the word save does not everytime mean salvation from hell
Salvation is a broad term. However, only with difficulty can the common meaning of “deliver from hell” be made to fit into numerous passages. It commonly means “to make whole,” “to sanctify,” “to endure victoriously,” or “to be delivered from some general trouble or difficulty.” Without question, the common “knee-jerk” reaction that assumes that “salvation” always has eternal deliverance (from hell) in view has seriously compromised the ability of many to objectively discern what the New Testament writers intended to teach.

135 d taylor May 15, 2013 at 9:48 pm

Why (in the verses below) did Peter and John have to pray for them to receive the Holy Spirit and why do they refer to baptism as: only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. If baptism was essential to receiving eternal life why this treatment of baptism
8:9 Now in that city was a man named Simon, who had been practicing magic and amazing the people of Samaria, claiming to be someone great. 8:10 All the people, from the least to the greatest, paid close attention to him, saying, “This man is the power of God that is called ‘Great.’” 8:11 And they paid close attention to him because he had amazed them for a long time with his magic. 8:12 But when they believed Philip as he was proclaiming the good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they began to be baptized, both men and women. 8:13 Even Simon himself believed, and after he was baptized, he stayed close to Philip constantly, and when he saw the signs and great miracles that were occurring, he was amazed.
8:14 Now when the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them. 8:15 These two went down and prayed for them so that they would receive the Holy Spirit. 8:16 (For the Spirit had not yet come upon any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) 8:17 Then Peter and John placed their hands on the Samaritans, and they received the Holy Spirit.
8:18 Now Simon, when he saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, offered them money, 8:19 saying, “Give me this power too, so that everyone I place my hands on may receive the Holy Spirit.” 8:20 But Peter said to him, “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could acquire God’s gift with money! 8:21 You have no share or part in this matter because your heart is not right before God! 8:22 Therefore repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that he may perhaps forgive you for the intent of your heart. 8:23 For I see that you are bitterly envious and in bondage to sin.” 8:24 But Simon replied, “You pray to the Lord for me so that nothing of what you have said may happen to me.”

136 r phillips May 17, 2013 at 6:15 am

If you think this verse proves baptism does not save then you could also use this verse to prove belief does not save because if he was baptized in the name of Jesus Christ he clearly already believed which, from your point of view, should have given him the Holy Spirit. If you look at this verses in context, however, you will see that this verse is not talking about the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (where the spirit comes to reside within you, meaning you’re saved) but the gifts of the Holy Spirit such as speaking in tongues which could only be received through the laying on of the apostles hands. We know this for a few reasons:
1) regardless of whether you are saved when you believe or saved when you are baptized, he would be saved at this point and thus received the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
2) Simon SAW that the spirit was given through the laying of hands
3) when he offered them money he said it was so “he could have this POWER too”
4) it was given through the laying on of the apostles hands. Only this one form of the Holy Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles hands.
There is more than one form/purpose of the Holy Spirit in the bible. There is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and the baptism by the Holy Spirit. They are all different and have different purposes in the bible.
This study [ http://www.newcreationstudies.org/NewCreation/holy.htm ] is a little long, but thorough. If you have an unclear understanding of the different ways the Holy Spirit manifests itself in the scriptures, you should definitely read it. He has other resources as well. I would highly recommend his studies. He’s one of the smartest and most dedicated men I know.

137 d taylor May 17, 2013 at 5:34 pm

What your  teacher says is what you have been saying since you started posting in this discussion, that a person is saved by works (doing physical things being baptised, obedience, repenting of sins etc..)
Why does your teacher have to take Acts 2:38 and import it into the Cornelius verses. when the context of the verses about Cornelius never even hint at their baptism being for forgivness of sins.
b. It was necessary for Cornelius and his household to be immersed in water in Jesus’ name (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?version=49&search=acts+10:47,48) for the forgiveness of sins (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?version=49&search=acts+2:38). (For a full understanding of this, see the lesson on http://www.newcreationstudies.org/NewCreation/save.htm#BAPTISM and examine the next section in this lesson dealing with http://www.newcreationstudies.org/NewCreation/holy.htm#INDWELLING_OF_THE_SPIRIT.)

 In Acts 11:17 they say they received the gift after believing
Acts 11:17 Therefore if God gave them the same gift as he also gave us after believing in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to hinder God?”
Here is what Paul says about receiving of the Holy Spirit. He says when you believed in Christ you were marked with the seal. This was to the   Ephesians 1:1 From Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, to the saints [in Ephesus], the faithful in Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 1:13 And when you heard the word of truth (the gospel of your salvation) – when you believed in Christ – you were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit,

138 d taylor May 17, 2013 at 7:52 pm

ShawneleShawSurplusd taylorI am not saying that a believer should not be baptized. I am saying that is part of the sanctification area of a believers life. Not part of them receiving eternal life.

139 blessed August 12, 2013 at 11:23 am

First I would like to say which is the most important is- IT is getting the word and the name GOD and Jesus out there. It now brings more attention and has people talking and thinking about God in America ,which is lacking. As far as baptism, Jesus sought after to have it done,so that in itself tells me it is important. I think it is to cleanse and to start new, go forth and do good works. Your sins have been washed away. To each person in their own time(it is not forced,it is a choice-free will) and my time is coming and would like to have Phil Robertson baptize me.God blessed him and put him in this position to spread the word. I’m happy happy happy that he is doing his calling. Pls contact for my baptism udoit123@yahoo.com

140 Mark Lamprecht August 12, 2013 at 1:41 pm

@blessed

141 d taylor August 12, 2013 at 5:21 pm

This is some what of an incoherent reply. The most important is getting the correct presentation of the gospel to people other wise they are being confused and will not know what what to believe to receive eternal life. and repentance, baptism, confession, etc.. is not part of the gospel to the unbeliever. What is is faith alone in Christ (The Messiah) for he gives eternal life to all who will believe in Him for it. John 3:16

142 Hannah Reese August 12, 2013 at 8:31 pm

Hmm. I’m not sure I understand the point you’re attempting to make about baptism. I do know for a fact that Jesus was baptized, like it is written in Matthew 3:13-17. Baptism is essential for salvation: but don’t take my word for it, feel free to check the verses that I am including in this comment.
Like in Acts 2:38 – Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”  
So Peter is saying that to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, you must repent, but also be baptized. 
Also, in Colossians 2:12 – “having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.” (I’m reading out of the NIV)
In Acts 22:16 – “And now what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name.”
So to me, that’s saying that being baptized is essential, because as it says, it washes your sins away. 
And then there’s Acts 10:48 – “So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked Peter to stay with them for a few days.” That was what Luke had written, they had been ordered by Peter.
In Acts 10:47, Peter said, “Surely no one can stand in the way of their being baptized with water. They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.” 
To me that’s another verse that says to receive the Holy Spirit, you should be baptized.
Matthew 28:19-20  – “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
According to my dad’s Bible that I’m using at the moment (it is a Quest Study Bible, in NIV) the word baptism is mentioned 19 times; baptism is mentioned 11 times, baptized is mentioned 44 times, and baptizing is mentioned 8 times. 
Sorry for this comment being so long! God Bless.

143 d taylor August 12, 2013 at 11:19 pm

Not sure if your post was addressing my post or just the topic in general. if you were asking me (Hmm. I’m not sure I understand the point you’re attempting to make about baptism.) the point is that baptism plays no part in an unbeliever becoming a believer (that is a person receiving eternal life by faith in Christ).  there is not a single verse when kept in context says baptism is part of an unbeliever becoming a believer by faith in Christ. It is not faith + whatever you want to add to faith.

144 r phillips August 13, 2013 at 8:47 am

I challenge every one of you to forget for just a few minutes anything you’ve ever been taught by a fellow human being. Anything anyone has ever added to plain reading of the scriptures. Disregard all of it for just a few minutes and sit down and take an honest look at Romans chapter 6. Read the chapter and what it has to say about the transformation that takes place within us when we are saved. How we become dead to sin. How we are raised to walk in newness of life. How we become united with Christ. Read the chapter as if you are looking at it for the very first time and only think about the words you are reading and what the bible is telling you about this transformation.
According to the scriptures in this passage, when did this transformation take place for the Romans? Accordingly, when would this transformation also take place for us today?

145 r phillips August 13, 2013 at 9:01 am

No single verse of the bible gives us the full picture all by itself. We must examine all scriptures that pertain to salvation and put them together to get the full picture. Not take some verses at face value and yet attempt to bury others by way of semantics.
It is important to remember that we have all been raised and taught by mankind. Mankind is prone to making mistakes. You should never assume that something is a certain just because that’s the way it’s always been taught in your family or at your church. Denominations were all founded by men who, somewhere along the line, disagreed with the Church, split off, and starting teaching things the way they thought they needed to be taught. There can only be one correct interpretation of the scriptures. There is but one absolute truth. Denominations were caused by disagreements with the original church, founded by Christ himself and the apostles. It is our responsibility as believers to do our due diligence in studying the scriptures to make sure that what is being taught is consistent with scriptures. We can’t all be right because we don’t all teach or believe the same things.
I pray constantly not that I’m right and everyone will agree with my doctrine but rather that we can all have a better understanding of God’s word and grow closer and closer to knowing the truth that can only be found by honest, open minded studying of the scriptures.

146 ShawneleShawSurplus August 13, 2013 at 10:42 am

d taylor d taylor Many,
MANY of the Scriptures on baptism clearly discuss its part in
salvation.  This one not only talks about the cleansing of sins and the
raised to with Christ aspect – both are essential to salvation – and it
notes how this is only affected when faith in God is the reason for
baptism:
Colossians 2:11 In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, 12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him ** through your faith in the working of God**, who raised him from the dead. 13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.

147 Lynn Mac August 13, 2013 at 11:41 am

Rev 1:5 John writes that Christ “washed us from our sins in his own blood”.
So no one can be saved unless their sins have been washed away by the blood of Christ.
Christ shed HIs blood that washes away sin in His  death, Jn 19:34
So  one must have a way into Christ’s death to access HIs blood that washes away sins.
By no coincidence baptism is what puts one into Christ’s death where His shed blood washes away sins, Rom 6:3,4.
The idea that “fatih only” puts one into Christ’s death is foreign to the bible.
As far as “faith only” is concerned, in Rom 6:16 Paul wrote:
“Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye
are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto
righteousness?”
According to Paul we all serve either one of two masters, we serve either:
1) sin unto death
or
2) obedience unto righeousness 
I serve #2 having obeyed the gospel by believing, repenting, confessing and submitting to water baptism, Jn 8:24; Lk 13:3,5; Mt 10:32,33; Mk 16:16.  Those that follow the man-made teaching of ‘faith only’ have ruled out #2 for themselves leaving them only a very bad master to serve.

148 d taylor August 13, 2013 at 5:31 pm

The only book in the Bible written to unbelievers is The Gospel of John find it in there and you may have a case other wise  the verses you posted are written to believers concering the dicipleship in the believers life.

149 d taylor August 13, 2013 at 5:40 pm

what happen in the 200 to 300 years before the Bible was brought into one book what if a person only had the Gospel of John in their life time. the Gospel of John was written Circa 85-90 A.D. so it was written way after Jesus was on earth long after his death on the cross. and it is the only book that says it was written to give a reason for people to place their faith in Christ (Messiah) to receive eternal life John 20 : 30, 31

150 d taylor August 13, 2013 at 5:42 pm

I challenge you to take your faith off of your deeds you have done and place it on Christ

151 d taylor August 13, 2013 at 5:45 pm

I alos challenge you to take your faith off of your deeds you have done and place it on Christ

152 r phillips August 13, 2013 at 6:19 pm

d taylor The language in Romans 6 is very clearly in the past tense. He is describing, in great detail, the transformation the Romans went through when they died to sin, were raised to walk in newness of life, became united with Christ in his death, etc. He is describing the moment the Romans were saved. And he says quite plainly it was during baptism these things happened.

153 r phillips August 13, 2013 at 6:28 pm

d taylor I follow the whole bible, not just the gospel of John. We have to trust God that people were taken care of properly. There was also at least 10 years after Jesus’ death that salvation was only available to the Jews and not the Gentiles. What happened to the Gentiles during that time? We can not let the circumstances of others affect our ability to read and interpret the bible. The bottom line is we have the bible today in its entirety and God gave it to us for a reason. We must obey all that is commanded within, not just the gospel of John.
I trust God to fulfill his promises. His promise is to all obedient believers.
There is no verse that says faith alone saves. You are adding words to the gospel message when you proclaim that it does. Just because something is not explicitly stated in certain verses does not discredit other verses where those things are explicitly stated.

154 Lynn Mac August 13, 2013 at 7:58 pm

d taylor
Rom 2:6-10 “Who will render to every man according to his deeds:”  On judgment day, God will base His judgment on the type of deeds each person has… “But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath,…”  But those that OBEY the truth, OBEY RIGHTEOUSNESS (Rom 6:16) will be judged to be saved.
Having faith in Christ means doing what Christ said:
“And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? ”  Lk 6:46  Jesus is not my Lord if I do not do what He says and He said to believe, repent, confess and be baptized.
The context in Lk 6 goes on to say “Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and DOETH them, I will shew you to whom he is like; He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. But he that heareth, and DOETH NOT, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.”
I cannot put my faith in the man-made doctrine of ‘faith only’ but must put my faith in Christ doing what He said.

155 d taylor August 13, 2013 at 10:25 pm

There was also at least 10 years after Jesus’ death that salvation was only available to the Jews and not the Gentiles.
Salvation has and will always be for anyone who will place their faith in Christ from Adam to the last human born to this age before eternity begins.

156 d taylor August 13, 2013 at 10:33 pm

So in John 6: 28, 29
John 6:28 So then they said to him, “What must we do to accomplish the deeds God requires?”
6:29 Jesus replied, “This is the deed God requires – to believe in the one whom he sent.”
so you are saying in this conservation that actually happened Jesus gave these people misleading information on what one must do to have eternal life.

157 r phillips August 13, 2013 at 10:37 pm

“When they heard this, they quieted down and glorified God, saying, “Well then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life.” (Acts 11:18 NASB)
The household of Cornelius was the first gentile household to receive salvation. This is why God granted them the gifts of the Holy Spirit to prove the point that salvation was now available to them also.

158 r phillips August 13, 2013 at 10:39 pm

Or, more likely, not every single word Jesus or anyone else ever spoke was recorded verbatim.

159 Lynn Mac August 13, 2013 at 10:59 pm

d taylor
First, note how Jesus called belief a deed, a work.  So salvation is dependent upon work, the work of belief.
The people asked Jesus  “What shall we do, that we might work the works of God”
Jesus answered their question by giving them the work of belief to do.  On the other hand, a Baptist minister would have told them not to do any works lest you try to earn your salvation.  A night & day difference in how Jesus & a Baptist minister would answer their question
Secondly, Jesus did NOT tell them to “believe only.’  When it comes to salvation there is no “one verse theology” for one has to examine all salvic verses.  Jesus said much more than Jn 6:29 but also said to repent, Lk 13;3,5; confess; Mt 10:32,33 and be baptized Mk 16:16,  Will you argue the impenitent, the denier of Christ, the one lost in his unremitted sins can be saved? 
 It also must be understood that belief is sometimes used as a synecdoche in the NT where believing stands for repenting, confessing and being baptized.

160 d taylor August 13, 2013 at 11:08 pm

The Canaanite woman in Matthew the Centurion also in Matthew

161 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 4:23 am

It never says either of those people were saved/converted. However, if you read Acts 10 & 11 it is quite clear that Cornelius’ household was the very first one.
In fact Cornelius’ household proves that belief alone does not save. He had been praying to God so what did He do? Sent Peter to tell him “words by which he would be saved” (Acts 11:14). Obviously there is more to it than just belief because otherwise he would have been saved right then and there but he wasn’t. God sent someone to preach the full message to him so he could be saved. And after God poured out the gift of the Holy Spirit (not the indwelling of the Holy Spirit which saves) to all who were present (saved and unsaved individuals alike) Peter commanded that they be baptized because “who was he to stand in God’s way?” (Acts 11:17)

162 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 9:40 am

Romans 5 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.
Romans 4:3 ….“Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”
Romans 4:16 Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham’s offspring………
See also Galatians 3:1-6, Acts 13:38, Romans 2:28, Romans 3:22, Romans 4:9, Romans 4:22-25
The scriptures are clear, we are all justified (rendered righteous) by faith (belief with the predominate idea of trust). Faith must be 1st, faith must be present before a man can take any action in obedience to Christ. We believe first and then we are baptised as our first step of obedience to Christ because we believe what we have heard. I can’t find any verses in my Bible that say we are justified through baptism.

163 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 9:56 am

@Stephanie Romans 6:3-4 “Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.”
1 Peter 3:21 “Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you—not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience—through the resurrection of Jesus Christ”
Acts 22:16 “Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name”
Acts 2:38 “Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
Galatians 3:27 “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.”
Colossians 2:12 “having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.”
We are justified by our faith in God through grace, absolutely and undeniably. But faith is not mental assent that something is true. Biblical faith (based on the original Greek) is an action word. It means to hear a message and believe it to the point of conviction. Baptism is not the WHAT that saves us, simply the WHEN, according to scriptures.
I can not find a single verse that says we are saved by faith alone. Whether intentionally or not, it seems the majority of people make the mistake of adding that little word to the end of each of these verses that you quoted above and teaching them as if the word were present. It isn’t. Faith is the beginning, but you must respond to the message you claim to believe.

164 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 10:06 am

@Stephanie
None of the verses you posted say one is justified by “faith only”.  Faith without works is dead.
Eph 2:8 we are told the Eph were saved through faith.  Peter said in 1Pet 3:21 baptism doth also now save us.
Eph 2:8———faith>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>saves
1Pet3:21——-baptism>>>>>>>>>>>>>>saves
Since there is just one way to be saved, no alternatives, then biblical faith includes baptism.
Rom 6:17,18 “But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness. ”
The Romans obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine then they were freed from sins or justified.  That form of doctrine the Romans obeyed from the heart that justified them was baptism, Rom 6:3-7

165 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 10:22 am

Romans 1:17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.” 
Genesis 15:6 Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.
Righteousness was credited to his account because he believed the Lord (no baptism required).  Has God changed?

166 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 10:39 am

Lynn Mac
1Pet3:21; Parallel argument to bring understanding. Did the water save Noah or did God save Noah? Who brought the water? Who commanded Noah to build the ark? Did Noah have to believe God and have faith in what God said in order to do what God said? Does the baptismal water literally save or is it belief in the resurrection of Christ that saves?
Romans 6:3-7  Keep Romans 6 in context with the text.  Is Paul using this verse to say that we are justified by baptism or is Paul making a case about not using grace as license to sin?

167 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 10:49 am

@Stephanie Lynn Mac For the context of Romans 6:3-7 I would have to say Paul is using the verses to say bothof those things. He is absolutely saying we should not be using grace as a license to sin. He is also reminding them how they entered into that grace in the first place. He says it quite plainly that it was through baptism.
As far as 1 Peter goes those are all valid points. Just like God used water to save Noah, he uses water to save us as well. That is why the beginning of the verse says “Corresponding to that…”

As I’ve stated before… baptism is not the WHAT that saves us (God and grace are what saves us) but baptism is the when. And just like Noah had to have faith in God and be obedient to his commandments, so too do we.

168 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 10:54 am

r phillips Lynn Mac 
When was Abram baptised?

169 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 11:02 am

@Stephanie
Hebrews 11:17 “By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son” So you see his faith was credited to him as righteousness, but it is also noteworthy what he did by faith.
According to Romans chapter 6 and 1 Peter 3:21, baptism is a way for us to become united with Christ in his death. Hebrews 10 goes into further detail about the death and resurrection of Christ and the beginning on the New Covenant (which is when grace began and the law ended). Therefore, baptism was not part of the salvation process prior to Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. Without that, how can we become united with Christ in his death?

Can you show me one verse, just one will do, where baptism is defined as either an act of obedience, a public statement of faith, or a symbol of a transformation that has already taken place?

170 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 11:03 am

r phillips
Acts 13:38 “Therefore, my friends, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you. 39 Through him everyone who believes is set free from every sin, a justification you were not able to obtain under the law of Moses.
What does justified mean? It means rendered righteous. Please present a verse from the Bible that actually states that we are justified by baptism.

171 Mh August 14, 2013 at 11:03 am

do you have children? If so, do you have rules/guidelines you find important for them to obey? ” if I’ve said it once, I’ve said it 100 times…’clean your room!’ Do you expect a “yes,sir” and a clean room by the end of the day? Or are you ok with your child going thru the day debating their alliegence to you on obience/respect? Meanwhile, the room if left unclean until they decide if you’re serious or not?
I see God/Christ as my Heavenly FATHER who has all authority. It’s not my place to debate or argue his commands. It’s my place, as a loving obedient child that I say, “Yes SIR.”
With Love

172 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 11:08 am

@StephanieLynn Mac
Hebrews 10:18-22 “Now where there is forgiveness of these things, there is no longer any offering for sin.
Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.”
Romans 6:3-4 “Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.”
The purpose of baptism is to unite us with Christ in his death. It is where we come into contact with Jesus’ blood. Before Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection had the Old Covenant, but after Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection a New Covenant was implemented in which the law ended and grace began. We only have access to this covenant through the blood of Jesus.
Therefore -> Old Covenant = law = no baptism
                        New Covenant = grace = baptism to access Jesus’ blood

173 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 11:09 am

r phillips
Ephesians 2:8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through
faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not
by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork,
created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us
to do.

Is faith an action word? In this verse faith is pistis=belief 1) conviction of the truth of anything, belief (blue letter
bible lexicon)
Abraham was saved by faith alone, no baptism: Genesis 15:6 Abram believed the
Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.
Has God changed?  Why would God save Abram by belief without baptism?

174 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 11:11 am

r phillips Lynn Mac 
When did God say that the old covenant would ever save?  He didn’t.  Keeping of old covenant meant blessings NOT salvation. 
The people under the old covenant were saved the same way we are and Abram was, by faith!

175 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 11:12 am

@Stephanie Colossians 2:12 “having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.”
Baptism is a work of God, not of ourselves.

176 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 11:13 am

@Stephanie  Lynn Mac The bible is quite clear that baptism is how we gain access to Jesus’ blood. We live under the new covenant. He put in place a system for us to become united with Christ in his death — through baptism. Paul’s word, not mine.

177 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 11:35 am

@Stephanie Lynn Mac
In Rom 6, note the ORDER of events about the Romans:
1) they were servants of sin
2) they obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine
3) then they were freed from sins (justified)
Notice how the Romans obedience came BEFORE they were justified. That’s why Paul said in Rom 6:16 “Obedince UNTO righteousness”. From v16 we all serve one of two “maters”, we either serve:
1) sin unto death
or
2)obedience unto righeousness
I serve #2. The man-man teaching of faith only eliminates #2 for those that follow that teaching leaving them with a not so good master to serve.

178 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 11:39 am

@Stephanie Lynn Mac 
Peter said eight souls were saved by WATER.  No one can pervert the text by changing “water” to “ark”.  Nor does “ark” fit the OT type to NT antitype that Peter was making.
In 1Pet 3:21 the words “like figure” in the KJV means antitype which is a mirror reflection of the type.
OT type———–saved by water
NT antitype——saved by water
The OT type was NOT saved by an ark for we today are not saved by an ark.  Peter could say we are saved by water because God has chosen water baptism as the means by which He saves.  So water baptism saves becasue God says it does.

179 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 11:45 am

@Stephanie r phillips Lynn Mac 
Abraham lived at a different time under a DIFFERENT law than us today.  Abraham lived BEFORE Christ shed His blood so for Abraham there was no command for water baptism in the name of the Lord for remission of sins as it is for us today.

180 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 11:48 am

@Stephanie
Rom 6:17,18 cf of Rom 6:3-7 shows that their obedience to baptism freed them from sin (justified) them.

181 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 12:23 pm

Gen 15:6 does NOT say Abraham believed ONLY in the Lord. The word “only” is not in that verse.
Turn back to Gen 12:1-4 and see that Abraham had an OBEDIENT working faith, his faith included his moving as God told him to move.
Heb 11:8 says “By faith Abraham…..obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.”
So to say Abraham was saved by “belief only” in Gen 15:6 is to
(1) add “only’ to God’s word thereby changing God’s word,
it (2) also ignores the fact that prior to Gen 15:6 Abrahams’s faith ALREADY included works.
And (3) it implies that prior to Gen 15:6 that Abraham was a lost, unforgiven, degenerate soul. But nothing in the contexts indicate this. What God said to Abraham in Gen 15:1 is not something God would say to a lost unforgiven person. So Abraham would have already been in a saved covenant relationship with God prior to Gen 15:6.

182 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 5:40 pm

r phillips Lynn Mac 
How did Abram gain access to Jesus’ blood?

183 d taylor August 14, 2013 at 5:55 pm

So  acording to what you and your church believe when faced with the plain text of scripture if it does not fit your idea of what a person must do,  then you come up with the explantion that  words are left out.  So the conversation a pereson sees between Jesus and people asking Him questions  is not really what Jesus was meaning to say, or what he actually said was not recorded and instead we see,  a might you say  a trick by God to fool people into believing that salvation is not really by faith (the answer given by the Messiah) but is actually by works.

184 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 5:59 pm

r phillips Lynn Mac 
What law did Abram live under?  Abram was credited with righteousness several hundred years before the mosaic law.  What law do you live under?  The law convicts us of our sin in order to turn us to Christ.  I don’t live under the law, the law condemns, I live life through the Spirit, Galatians 5.

185 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 6:32 pm

r phillips
Faith is mental assent that something is true:  Faith=pistis=believe/belief.  Romans 1:17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”  Romans 3:21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith.

186 d taylor August 14, 2013 at 6:37 pm

according to the people posting in support of a works salvation (church of christ people), everytime the word salvation is in the Bible text.  Then that verse must be added to the list to figure out what a person must do to be saved. so by reading through the Bible here is a list of works people must do to be saved (according to the church of christ people)  be baptised, confess Christ, repent, obey, make Christ lord of your life, for women, women will be saved through childbearing, perseverance, 
kind of short on time i will look for others latrer and post them

187 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 6:38 pm

r phillips Faith IS mental assent that something is true.  Faith=pistis=believe/belief.  Pistis is not an action verb, it is a feminine noun (blue letter bible lexicon)  Romans 3:21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith.

188 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 6:40 pm

@Stephanie r phillips Lynn Mac
Heb 9:15 “And for this cause he is the mediator of a new covenant, that a death having taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first covenant, they that have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.”
When Christ died on His cross and shed His blood, His blood, in a sense, flowed backwards to bring complete forgiveness of sins (something the OT could not do) to those obedient to God who lived under the first covenant.  That being done, God could then bring in a new covenant that we today are under.  When Christ shed His blood that blood also flowed forward to us today under this NT covenant where we can have complete remissions of sin when we submit to water baptism.

189 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 6:47 pm

@Stephanie r phillips Lynn Mac 
Rom 4:3, Abraham was credited righteousness, he was reckoned righteous, his righteousness was put on account…..it was put on Christ’s account for when Christ died his blood flowed backwards (Heb 9:15) completely forgiving the sins of Abraham,  something Abraham could not have under the  Patriarchal law he lived under.  Those sacrifices under the OT could not bring complete forgiveness of sins, that took the blood of Christ.

190 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 7:02 pm

d taylor
Paul once said “For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.”, Acts 20:27.  So if one desires to be saved he must seek all the counsel of God, look at ALL verses that deal with salvation and not cherry pick out the verses that have “believe” while ignoring all other salvic verses.  N one can cherry pick out Jn 3:16 and declare belief only saves while ignoring what Jesus said in Lk 13:3,5; Matt 10:32,33 or Mk 16:16.  In these verses Jesus made repentance, confession and baptism of equal importance and necessity to salvation as belief.  Therefore “believeth” in Jn 3:16 includes repentance, confession and baptism.  Can you prove to me that the impenitent, the denier of Christ, the one lost in his unremitted sins will be saved?

191 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 7:10 pm

@Stephanie So which is it that unites us with Christ’s blood? Is Romans 3:21 telling us the truth or is Romans 6:3-4 telling us the truth? Here’s a thought — we need both faith and baptism and there is no single verse in the bible that gives us the full picture. We must put it all together.
You’re seriously telling me you can read Romans 6:3-4 and say those verses are saying that all of those changes took place before baptism and not, as the verse states, through baptism?

192 r phillips August 14, 2013 at 7:15 pm

d taylor According to you, if it does not fit your idea of salvation you add words to scripture verses such as “alone” or “only” to help make your point, add an additional baptism of/by the Holy Spirit to the gospel message to make passages such as Romans 6:3-4 and 1 Peter 3:21 match your ideology when Ephesians clearly states there is only ONE baptism, and make up a physical salvation from earthly danger to explain away any other times where the bible suggests ANYTHING other than faith brings about salvation.
We, on the other hand, read the bible as a whole, and put all the parts together so we can try and find the clearest picture possible.

193 Lynn Mac August 14, 2013 at 7:40 pm

Acts 2:41 “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added [unto them] about three thousand souls.”
Acts 2:44 ” And all that believed were together, and had all things common; ”
In v41 those that received Peter’s words were baptized, conversely those that rejected Peter’s words rejected being baptized.
So who were the ones that “BELIEVED” in v44?  The ones accepting Peter’s words and were baptized OR the ones rejecting Peter’s words and rejecting baptism?  Obviously the ones that BELIEVED in v44 are the ones baptized. So we have the word BELIEVED in v44 INCLUDING BEING BAPTIZED.  “Believed” in v44 is used as a synecdoche were it INCLUDES being baptized.
Note also that Luke’s words of v41 imply that one not baptized was rejecting Peter’s gospel message.   Being baptized was accepting that gospel message.  So as long as one remains unbaptized he is rejecting that gospel message.

194 Mh August 14, 2013 at 9:24 pm

I think you are confussing church of Christ with the Mormon religion.

195 d taylor August 14, 2013 at 9:41 pm

No i am speaking about the people who are posting here (church of christ)

196 d taylor August 14, 2013 at 9:53 pm

John 6:47 I tell you the solemn truth, the one who believes has eternal life.
can not get any clearer than this.

197 ShawneleShawSurplus August 14, 2013 at 10:20 pm

Lynn Mac Exactly.  And in Acts 8 we see that Philip preached the gospel and the Ethiopian eunuch IMMEDIATELY asked to be baptized – further illustrating that preaching baptism is part of preaching the Gospel and that baptism is the response to the Gospel.

198 ShawneleShawSurplus August 14, 2013 at 10:34 pm

d taylorIt is very clear from Scripture that a saving belief includes baptism.  I was reading in Luke today and I noticed that Luke says (in 9:51), “As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.”  I could use that verse to argue that Jesus never died on the Cross -because it doesn’t say it right here…it says that He was going to be taken up to Heaven so, obviously, He was never nailed to the Cross to suffer and die for our sins…to be buried and raised again to ascent to Heaven, right?
Of course not.
We take all of Scripture in it’s entirety.  Did you know that Mark is pretty brief?  There are many things that Matthew records that Mark doesn’t – but none of us take that to mean that Matthew lied..that they didn’t happen.  Scripture is very clear about baptism – where it differs with man’s doctrine we can know that it is the doctrine that is in error.

199 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 10:59 pm

@Mh The Mormon/LDS Church was originally called The Church of Christ, things that make you go hmmmm.

200 d taylor August 14, 2013 at 11:14 pm

(It is very clear from Scripture that a saving belief includes baptism.)
No it is not, only when verses are taken out of context,  of course when that happen a person can make the Bible say what they want,  example people saying baptism is essential for salvation 
and then can ingore a verse in context like i posted that is so clear and to the point. if you can not see and understand that,  what else can a person say. if a person standing on the beach can not see the ocean right in front of their eyes not much more can be said,  they are blind to scripture and unless the Holy Sprit intervenes will continue trying to work their way to eternal life, justification, salvation

201 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 11:17 pm

r phillips I have already explained the context of Romans 6- Do not use grace as a license to sin (his response to the antinomians). Paul is using an illustration to demonstrate his point. Paul’s letter to the Romans is a structured reasoning of the whole gospel and his purpose for writing is to show the relationship between legalism and living in sin using grace as license. The obvious themes for Romans are as follows: Romans 1-3 All are sinners, Romans 3-5 salvation by faith, Romans 6 life not to be lived in the flesh, Romans 7 dead to the law, Romans 8 life in the spirit, etc. If baptism were required for salvation, why did Paul not address it as being of the utmost importance in Romans 3-5 where he addresses salvation for the gentiles and jews? And what about Romans 10 where Paul addresses man’s responsibility in salvation. Baptism not mentioned. Romans 10:9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

202 Stephanie August 14, 2013 at 11:43 pm

ShawneleShawSurplus Baptism is an act of obedience, not an act of salvation.  And you were not literally buried with Christ and raised with Him or washed in His blood.  Rainbow=sign/symbol, circumcision=sign/symbol, baptism=sign/symbol.  Romans 1:15 Through him we received grace and apostleship to call all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith for his name’s sake.  Obedience is an act, baptism is an act of obedience.  Obedience comes from saving faith.  Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”  Righteousness is by faith.  Faith=pistis=belief=a feminine noun, not a verb.  The power of God brings salvation to everyone who believes.

203 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 6:37 am

Sure the ‘point’ of Romans 6 is about not using grace as a license to sin. I agree whole heartedly with that. I don’t see how that somehow changes his words. Once again, he is reminding them how they entered into grace in the first place. He says very clearly that they were united with Christ in his death, raised to walk in newness of life, and died to sin through baptism. The context of that chapter doesn’t change my point. How can you change his words to make it mean anything else other than those things happened, as he says, through baptism.
Baptism is not symbol of something having already taken place, an act of obedience, a public statement of faith, or anything else that denominations widely proclaim it to be and you won’t find a single verse in the bible defining it as such. You can find it numerous times being used in conjunction with either reminding a saved believer how they became saved or explaining to a new convert how to become saved.
Your mindset of “why would he leave it out here if its so inportant”

204 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 7:00 am

Colossians 2:12 states that baptism is a work of God, not of ourselves. There is no “work” that we do in baptism so you can’t say we believe in a works based salvation when the bible clearly defines baptism as a work of God and defines faith as a work as well.

205 d taylor August 15, 2013 at 7:20 am

Colossians 2:12 Having been buried with him in baptism, you also have been raised with him through your faith in the power of God who raised him from the dead.
Now where does this verse say that baptism is a work of God. after Christ said it is finished the work was done concerning salvation.  when Christ went back to Heaven He sat down (at the right hand of the Father) there is no work being done for salvation now by man or by God it is finished. The only work now being done is toward the bringing in the kingdom.

206 d taylor August 15, 2013 at 7:25 am

also the only work in the is in the life of the believer in their area of sanctification discipleship

207 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 7:30 am

A) it absolutely says it is a work of God. In the NASB it using the phrase “working of God” referring to God raising us through faith in baptism.
B) What about the work of faith?

208 Lynn Mac August 15, 2013 at 8:45 am

d taylor 
Can an impenitent person be saved?  Lk 13:3,5
Can one who will not confess Christ be saved?  Mt 10:32,33
Can one who is not baptized be saved?  Mk 16:16

209 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:18 am

@Stephanie Read Hebrews 11 and James 2 and tell me that, biblicaly speaking, faith is nothing more than mental assent. Faith without action is a DEAD faith. In the words of James, “Can that faith save you?”

“But someone may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.”

210 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:24 am

Also in James 2 we learn more about Abraham:
“Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,””
So the scripture saying “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness” was not made complete until he combined his faith with his actions.

211 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 9:24 am

r phillips What whole did the church at Rome have during the time of Paul? Are you telling me they whipped out their Bibles to understand they needed to be baptised in order to receive salvation from the Lord? They had to rely on something that didn’t exist to understand that they needed to be baptised in order to be saved? The Bible as a whole didn’t exist at that time. Does Romans 6 tell them how they entered into Grace? No! Paul says in Romans 5:2 that we access grace by faith. Romans 6 says nothing about accessing Grace through baptism. Romans 6 is a reminder that we are to be following Christ. It is an encouragement to put off sin. It says “buried with Him through baptism into death”, death is NOT salvation, sin is death. The context is DEATH/sin because they were still living in their flesh/sinning and needed the encouragement to not live as though they were still dead in their sins, but to live liked saved Christians in newness of life.

212 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:27 am

@StephanieAnd how does Paul say they were “raised to walk in newness of life” ?

213 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 9:29 am

r phillips Hebrews 11, every time faith is used there it is pistis: Strong’s Number G4102 matches the Greek πίστις (pistis), which occurs 244 times in 228 verses in the Greek concordance of the KJV which is a feminine noun, not an action verb and is mental assent by definition:  1) conviction of the truth of anything, belief; but don’t just take my word for it, do a word study for yourself.  I use Blue Letter Bible.  You are trying to define the word differently.

214 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:30 am

You also conveniently left out the word “Christ’s” with your statement about through baptism into death. The bible says were buried through baptism is Christ’s death.
“Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.”
How do we get into Christ? Baptism. How are we united with him in his death, and subsequently raised to walk in newness of life? Baptism.

215 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:35 am

@Stephanie I have realized I misspoken a little about the definition of the word itself. I thought a teacher had the point about the Greek word’s meaning, but he was making the point that through study we can find that faith means more by context. I apologize. I was trying to access information that had been taught to me long ago. And you’re right about the definition of faith/pistis. 
But that doesn’t change the context of Hebrews 11 and James 2 making it very clear that faith by itself is dead. The bible is clear that unless we act on our faith we have nothing. Again, I am sorry for remembering incorrectly what I had been taught and speaking of it falsely. I will try harder from now to confirm what I am remembering from past lessons before posting.

216 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 9:38 am

r phillips James 2, again every time faith is used here it is pistis, a feminine noun, not an action verb, belief, mental assent.  The whole book of James nicely illustrates the fact that a true saving faith will produce fruit in the life of the truly saved believer.  Saving faith must proceed the ability to obey God and do what He says to do.  James is not speaking to God, James is speaking to man.  You are now trying to use James to justify baptism by relating baptism to a work of man, but you previously stated that baptism is a work of God.  If baptism is a work of God, you can’t use James to justify it.  James is absolutely correct, a DEAD faith can not save you because you were never saved in the first place.  True saving faith will produce fruit in the true believer who is saved by faith.

217 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:41 am

@Stephanie I’m using James 2 to prove that we can use the context of the bible to show that true saving faith is more than just mental assent. I don’t just mean baptism. I just mean, in general, it takes more to be saved than to say “OK, I believe in God now”. I brought it up because, I have no realized, I was misspeaking about something I thought I had learned. He was a Greek teacher and thinking back to his lesson on faith I thought it was a lesson about the Greek words, but it was actually about biblical context. Again, I apologize for misrepresenting that and in the future I will be more careful about double checking my information.

218 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:49 am

I have always been bad at remembering conversations, lessons, etc. Which is why usually I try to just stick with using the bible because I have it right there in front of me. I attempted to use information I didn’t learn from the bible, and I now realize it was inaccurate. So from here on out, all I will use to support the points I am making is pure, unadulterated scripture!

219 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 9:50 am

r phillips The Christian “died” with Christ and there has taken place a break
with our past.
We are “raised” with Christ. We put our faith in Jesus Christ
and have been spiritually resurrected. This took place the moment we believed on
Christ as our personal Savior. Referring to our spiritual resurrection Jesus said: “Truly, truly,
I say to you, an hour is coming and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of
the Son of God, and those who hear will live” John 5:28.  Those who HEAR will live, why? Because you have to hear the word to come to faith in the Lord and believe in the promises of God.

220 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:50 am

@Stephanie Romans 6 doesn’t say we died with Christ when we heard, though, it says that happened through our baptism.

221 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 9:56 am

That verse is also referring to the resurrection and the raising of the dead.

222 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 9:57 am

r phillips I have found another interesting thing about the word works in James 2:  the word works is not an action verb, it is a noun, Strong’s Number G2041 matches the Greek ἔργον (ergon), which occurs 176 times in 161 verses in the Greek concordance of the KJV which means 1) business, employment, that which any one is occupied a) that which one undertakes to do, enterprise, undertaking.  What does that really mean then, what WE do, NO!  Our occupation becomes being a servant to the Lord the minute we come to a saving faith in Him.  Confess with your mouth Jesus is Lord, Lord means master, we become His slave.  That is our occupation, we work for Him, we are employed by Him.

223 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 9:58 am

r phillips Christ didn’t say those who are baptised will live, He said those who HEAR will live.

224 Lynn Mac August 15, 2013 at 10:01 am

@Stephanie
Mk 2:5 says Jesus “saw their faith”.
What was it that Jesus saw that is called “faith”?  The WORK those men did in removing the roof and lowering the sick man down to Jesus for Him to heal.  In this context faith is plainly called a work.
——-
1 Thess 1:3 “….your work of faith…”
——-
Eph 2:8 tells us the Ephesians were ‘saved through faith’.  1 Pet 3:21 Peter tells us ‘baptism doth also now save us’.
Eph 2:8——faith>>>>>>>>>>>>saves
1Pet3:21—baptism>>>>>>>>>>saves
Since there is just one way to be saved, no alternatives, then a saving biblical faith MUST include baptism.

225 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 10:04 am

r phillips You said baptism is a work of God, now you are saying the work of Abraham made him righteous?  Did the work of God make Abraham righteous or did the work of Abraham make Abraham righteous?

226 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:04 am

@Stephanie The verse you are using is talking about the resurrection of the dead. It is not talking about living people hearing the word living eternally. It is talking about the raising of the dead and those who hear the voice will live.

227 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:07 am

@Stephanie Colossians 2:12 says baptism is a work of God. Not me. James 2 is where it says that his obedience made his faith complete.

228 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 10:10 am

r phillips Scripture is clear, unsaved people, are dead people, spiritually dead people who are still alive in their bodies.  Jesus said, my sheep HEAR my voice and follow me.  We must hear the gospel in order to come to saving faith.

229 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:10 am

@Stephanie You’ve also been making the point the faith, that is trust in God, and nothing else brings about salvation. Yet you brought up Romans 10:9. Would confessing with your mouth not also be considered a work?

230 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:12 am

@Stephanie That verse is talking about literal dead people rising from their graves

231 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 10:12 am

r phillips So, now you are adding another “work” to your list of “works”.  You must come to faith, before you can confess.  Confessing is a fruit of belief.  Just as baptism is a fruit of belief.

232 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:14 am

@Stephanie But it says confessing with your mouth results in salvation

233 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:15 am

I agree, faith must come first before anything else can take place. Just as I’ve said before. Faith is the beginning. You must first believe before you can respond to the message. We can find the full message by examining all scriptures. By reading Romans 10:9 we know that faith and confession must be present. Reading Acts 2:38 shows us where repentance and baptism come into the picture

234 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 10:29 am

r phillips At what point do you stop. Keep adding to that list of yours and you will soon be setting up shop with the Mormons and falling right off the edge of the cliff with them. If you can be saved by what you do, then more power to you, be baptised, confess, work, do all you can do and hope that you caught all that is “required” of you.  I hope you get it all right because if you don’t you will be damned for choosing what you can do over what Christ has done for you. “For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.” James 2:10

235 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:33 am

@Stephanie So does confession not result in salvation, then? Does repentance and baptism not bring about forgiveness of sins and the gift of the holy spirit? That is what the scriptures tell me to do, so that is what I do.

236 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 10:34 am

I truly hope and pray that the Church of Christ people hear will search out the scriptures and find the truth.

237 Stephanie August 15, 2013 at 10:34 am

I think Paul said it best: Galatians 5 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. 2 Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. 3 Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law. 4 You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. 5 For through the Spirit we eagerly await by faith the righteousness for which we hope. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. 7 You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth? 8 That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you. 9 “A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.” 10 I am confident in the Lord that you will take no other view. The one who is throwing you into confusion, whoever that may be, will have to pay the penalty. God Bless!

238 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:41 am

I stop when scripture stops. If it’s in the scripture, I accept it as truth. And I follow through. The bible reiterates time and time again that faith is absolutely important. But it is clear the there is a time in our faith that God has designated to forgive us our sins, give us the gift of the Holy Spirit, make us dead to sin, raise us to walk in newness, clothe us in Christ, and save us and that point in time is when we submit to the waters of baptism.

239 r phillips August 15, 2013 at 10:48 am

Think of it is in the same way as a large monetary gift. If someone wrote you a check for $10 million could say that you earned that money? No. But aren’t there a few things you have to do before you have access to it? You have to endorse the back of the check, drive to the bank, and give the check to the teller to put it into your account. Those are the instructions on how to access a gift in the form of the check. It was given to you by nothing you did but you still have to accept the gift. If you put the check in your back pocket and say “I know it’s there” but never do anything with it, then you don’t really have $10 million yet.
Baptism, confession, repentance these are not works we do to earn our salvation. It is us following God’s instructions on how to enter into a covenant with him. It is how we accept the gift. We still can’t say we have earned our salvation, it was still a gift from God that we did not deserve. But we have to accept the gift by following his instructions.

240 Lynn Mac August 15, 2013 at 11:39 am

You mentioned a good verse Gal 5:6:
“For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.”
1) Paul tells the Galatians circumsison or uncircumcision means nothing “IN CHRIST”. How does one get in CHrist? Baptism, Gal 3:27. No verse says faith ony puts one in Christ.
2) Paul said what avails is a “faith which worketh by love”. What does it mean to love? Jn 14:15 “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” The bible equates love with keeping Christ’s commandments. So faith is a work, it works to keep Christ’s commandments.
3) compare verses:
Gal 5:6 – uncircumcision/circumcison avails nothing>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>but a faith which worketh by love
1Cor 7:19 – circumcison,uncircumcison is nothing>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>but keeping the commandments of God
Faith which workth by love is eqivalent to keeping the commandments of God. So a faith that avails(saves) is one that keeps God commandments.

241 Lynn Mac August 15, 2013 at 11:42 am

@Stephanie
Paul was condemning the Galatians for going back to the OT law thinking they would be justified if they were circumcised. Paul NEVER told the Galatians they did not have to obey Christ’s NT, in fact, Paul told them twice they had quit “obeyng the truth” when they left the NT and returned to the OT, Gal 3:1; 5:7.

242 Lynn Mac August 15, 2013 at 12:20 pm

r phillips 
Naaman, who was told by God to dip in the Jordan river seven times and he would come clean.  His going and dipping was a work, so who will argue that his cleansing was earned and not of grace?

243 ShawneleShawSurplus August 15, 2013 at 1:48 pm

d taylorYou write, “No it is not, only when verses are taken out of context,  of course when
that happen a person can make the Bible say what they want,  example
people saying baptism is essential for salvation”
When you speak of these persons making the Bible say that baptism is essential for salvation, do you mean Peter?
“Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you—not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience—through the resurrection of Jesus Christ…”  (1 Peter 3:21)
Not Jesus, I hope?
“He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.” (Mark 16:16)

You say that the verse you posted is clear and to the point.  I agree.  It is easy (and has been done in this comment section numerous times) to see that saving faith includes obedience to the Gospel.  You say it doesn’t – you say that this verse is taken by itself and not only needs no other Scripture for clarification – but you act as though we are not allowed to use any other Scriptures to understand what is meant in this one “clear and to the point” verse:

John 6:47 I tell you the solemn truth, the one who believes has eternal life.
So, taking that verse without any help from anywhere else, we can understand that you believe that demons have eternal life, right?

244 ShawneleShawSurplus August 15, 2013 at 1:54 pm

@Stephanie  Hi Stephanie, I agree with you that MY involvement in baptism is an act of obedience – but Scripture is clear that GOD’s part in it is what brings about salvation.
Tell me, since God promises, in His Word, these things for those being baptized:
*forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38; 22:16; Colossians 2:11-14)

*the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38)
*being clothed in Christ (Gal. 3:27)
*being buried with Jesus and raised to walk in newness of life (Romans 6)
*made alive with Christ (Colossians 2:13)
*and salvation (Mark 16:16 & 1 Peter 3:21)
How can you claim that God is not doing the very things His Word says He is doing when we are baptized?
We agree that God brings salvation to everyone who believes – and the Bible’s definition of belief includes obedience to the Gospel.

245 ShawneleShawSurplus August 15, 2013 at 1:57 pm

@Stephanie I believe the official name of the Mormon church is the Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints.  Accuracy is important – as we’re seeing in this discussion.

246 d taylor August 15, 2013 at 5:31 pm

salvation  was never offered to the demons salvation was only offered to humans that is why God took on a human body to save mankind not demons. can you not see what makes the demons shutter it is their belief and nothing else that shows the huge part belief plays in this

247 d taylor August 15, 2013 at 5:34 pm

the power/work of God is directed toward the Raising of Christ not toward baptisim (the power of God who raised Him from the dead)

248 d taylor August 15, 2013 at 5:46 pm

Do you realize the word salvation, save does not always mean salvation from hell many times it means a physical salvation from either danger from enemies of God or from wrath from Gods judgment.
http://www.faithalone.org/journal/2003ii/lopez.pdf
http://www.faithalone.org/journal/1996i/Wilkin.html

249 ShawneleShawSurplus August 15, 2013 at 8:37 pm

d taylor Salvation is offered to whosoever would believe in Him (John 3:16)  Either Demons are saved, or “belief” is more than the head belief for which you and Stephanie advocate.

250 d taylor August 15, 2013 at 10:06 pm

show me where the everyone in John 3:16 means everysingle thing Angles, demons,humans as you say
did not want to post the whole context but it can be read Hebrews 1-2.
2:16 For surely his concern is not for angels, but he is concerned for Abraham’s descendants. 2:17 Therefore he had to be made like his brothers and sisters in every respect, so that he could become a merciful and faithful high priest in things relating to God, to make atonement for the sins of the people. 2:18 For since he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are tempted.

251 Mh August 15, 2013 at 11:56 pm

Ms. Stephanie you are not arguing with church of Christ people. You are arguing with scripture. Rather it is scripture on faith alone or scripture on baptism they are both scripture that was “God-breathed.” When we commit to Christ we commit to scripture . We are not allowed to pick and choose scripture. We as Christians are to believe in all scripture. As Christians are we choose Christ. It’s either a “yes” or ” no.” We must be careful or we set ourselves up to be lukewarm and we know what Christ says in Revelations 3 about being lukewarm.
With Love

252 Mh August 16, 2013 at 12:02 am

This is true, but today’s CofC had nothing to do with Joseph Smith. Today’s CoC was established in the early 1900s to bring beliefs back to the original church of Christ at Pentecost.

253 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 9:13 am

d taylor
James’ point in James 2 is that faith only does not save.  To further prove that point, in v19 James shows that a Christians’ faith is the same as a demons faith EXCEPT the demons have faith only whereas the Christian has an obedient faith.  Therefore if one has faith only he is no better off than the demons.
Jn 12:42 “Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess [him], lest they should be put out of the synagogue: ”
Since the chief rulers had “belief only”, a belief void of  confession, their belief only will not save them cf Matt 10:32,33.

254 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 10:40 am

@Mh You are entilted to your opinion and God alone will judge and truly knows my heart for Him, His sovereignty, and what is right by Him.  I truly believe that this teaching dishonors God in so much of a way that it pains my heart to the extent that I am willing to address baptismal regeneration for the heresy that it is.  No one on this blog is “lukewarm” or they wouldn’t be here.  Sharing your convictions requres a deep passion that can’t be explained by words.

255 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 10:43 am

ShawneleShawSurplus Since I used to be one, I am well aware of what their official name is and I am well aware of their history and their original name before it was changed several times.  They also teach a salvation that requires baptism.  You have more in common with them than you realize.

256 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 10:44 am

@Mh If you could be obedient, you wouldn’t need Jesus, has Christ died in vain?

257 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 10:47 am

Historical context is also important to Biblical understaning ?  Anyone here studied Mikveh?

258 r phillips August 16, 2013 at 10:50 am

@Stephanie So can you explain to me why Paul was not saved from the moment he believed? According to you, the moment he put his faith in Christ he should have been saved. But he is blinded and for three days he fasts and prays. After three days, Ananias is sent to him “so he could receive the Holy Spirit” (Acts 9:17) and he is commanded to “be baptized and wash away his sins, calling on His name (Acts 22:16)
Why the three day delay in his salvation? Why did Ananias need to be sent in order for him to be able to receive the Holy Spirit? Why was he commanded to be baptized and why was he told it would wash away his sins?

259 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:12 am

Mikveh=Jewish Baptism and it’s foundation is in the Torah. 
One of the commandments from the category of statutes (chukim) was the mikveh bath.
Statutes(chukim) Practices that serve to strengthen the bond between G-d and His people through obedience
.
G-d commanded that whenever someone became ritually impure,  they went to the mikveh bath in order to restore one’s status in the community. The word mikveh literally meant “a collection or gathering together.”
The word mikveh makes use of the same root letters in Hebrew as the word for “hope”.   In Jeremiah, the word mikveh is used in the sense of “hope,” but at the same time also associated with “living water”.
The water had to be “living water” from a spring or river. It had to be running water. The individual was completely immersed under the water (Heb. tevilah). And it had nothing to do with the salvation of the person.
It showed that you had been given a new life of blessings and responsibilities in the community. It demonstrated, through obedience, that a person was spiritually clean and eligible for full privileges and service within the nation of Israel.

260 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:23 am

In the historical Jewish context, what does this mean then?  We are talking about a Christianity that evolved out of a Jewish culture.  They knew what it meant to be baptised and they knew that baptism did not save them.  How many times do we see Christ symbolized in the OT lives of the Jews?  Christ is EVERYWHERE in the OT.  Christ IS hope, Christ IS the living water.  How can we say that baptism did not just simpy continue into Christianity from Jewish culture to be the symbol of new life that it had ALWAYS represented.  Why did Paul address circumcision and not baptism?  Could it be it was because NO ONE living at that time and in that culture would have EVER associated baptism with salvation?  They associated it with impurity and purity.  Baptism always was and always will be a symbol for going to the living water that is Christ Jesus to receive our purity.  We get our purity from Christ NOT from baptism.

261 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:27 am

Where did the Church go wrong?  It went wrong when the Roman Catholic Church decided to teach that God’s grace is literally confired at baptism and we still have a problem with this heretical teaching to this very day.  The Roman Catholic Church was wrong, is wrong , and all Churches who choose to follow this heresy are wrong too.  Baptism is what it always was.  AN ACT OF OBEDIENCE THAT STREGTHENS OUR BOND TO GOD!

262 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:34 am

Mark 16:16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
If we look at this through the eyes of a Jewish culture what do we see?  In the traditional Jewish culture, baptism was a symbol of going from a state of impurity to a state of purity, it was also practiced when a Gentile was converted into the Jewish faith.  So, with Jewish eyes, which understood that baptism was a symbol of being made pure and an act of obedience at conversion, how could anyone possibly teach that these Jewish converts into Christianity ever thought that baptism now brought salvation?  They knew what this verse meant.  BELIEVE and you will be saved.  DO NOT BELIEVE and you will be condemned.  BE BAPTIZED to show that you are no longer impure, that you will live with hope and in newness of life, and that you have been converted.

263 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:43 am

John 7:37-39
37 On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”[http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John%207:37-39&version=NIV#fen-NIV-26367a] 39 By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified.

264 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:43 am

John 7:37-39
New International Version (NIV)
37 On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” 39 By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified.

265 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:45 am

John 7:37 On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”

266 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:52 am

John 6:29 Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

267 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:53 am

John 8:24 I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I am he, you will indeed die in your sins.”

268 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:55 am

John 11:40 Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”

269 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 11:57 am

John 20:31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

270 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 12:00 pm

Luke 7 
44 Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet.
 47 Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.”
48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
49 The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”
50 Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

271 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 12:04 pm

Great, Honorable, and Holy, Father God, I pray that you will open the eyes of the blind, so that they can see the truth of Your words, that it is by faith/belief in who You are and what You did that saves them.  Please free them of the heretical teaching that one must be baptised in order to receive the grace that you have freely offered to all who will believe in you and put their faith in you for what you did for us.  Amen.  God Bless!

272 Mh August 16, 2013 at 12:13 pm

Ms. Stephanie, you are absolutely right that we have our free-will. And with that I choose not to debate with you. You are already in a tense debate, with yourself and higher power, good luck and I hope you find peace.
With Love

273 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 12:38 pm

@Stephanie 
There was no water baptism in the name of the Lord for remission of sins in the law of Moses.  This “Jewish baptism” that you are referring to and NT water baptism are not the same.
I do not care what the Catholics say, Water baptism is necessary to salvation becasue the bible says it is.
Christ’s church began at Pentecost in Acts 2 with Peter preaching the first recorded gospel sermon. Peter and the other apostles were carrying out the great commission of Christ, Lk 24:47; Mt 28:19,20; Mk 16:15,16 here in Jerusalem.  So from Acts 2 onward, can you show me one example of an “unbaptized Christian?  Such a person never existed.

274 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 12:44 pm

@Stephanie
What a twist you have put on Mk 16;16.
Mk 16:15,16 “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every
creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not
shall be damned.”
This has onthing to do with any Jewish washing but is Christ’s great commssion that is to be taken to every creature. The baptism of Acts 2:38 that reits sins is this baptism of Mk 16:16.
You posted “BE BAPTIZED to show that you are no longer impure, that you will live with hope and in newness of life, and that you have been converted.”
You try to re-arrange the verse to make it read “he that beliveth is saved, then baptized sometime later” 
The order of the verse has Jesus putting baptism BEFORE salvation not after.  I always have to remind my Baptists friends to quit changing the bible to fit their theology but change their theology to fit the bible.

275 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 1:02 pm

@Stephanie 
Jn 7:37-39 does not do away with the necessity of water baptism.

276 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 1:14 pm

@Stephanie
You quote Lk 7:44-50 where Jesus forgave the sins of a woman.
1) this took place when the OT law was still in effect, so this woman is NOT an example of NT salvation.
2) this took place BEFORE Jesus died and shed HIs blood that washes away sins in water bpatism.  So this woman lived before and was not accountable to Acts 2:38 as we today are accountable to it.
3) we know from Matt 9:6 that when Jesus was ON EARTH he had the power to forgive sins.  Yet Jesus is not ON EATH, he ascended and left earth some 2,000 years ago.  But when He left earth, He left behind His word, the NT as HIs autority on earth and His word ays sins are forgiven when one believes, repents, confesses and is baptized, Jn 3:16; Lk 13:3,5; Mt 10:32,33; Mk 16:16.
4) Rom 10:9 – NT belief requires belief that “that God hath raised (past tense) him from the dead.  Christ had not yet died much less been raised from the dead so this woman could not have the belief of Rom 10:9. that the NT requires.

277 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 1:17 pm

@Stephanie 
You post that God would open the eyes of the blind, yet you are the one that has been blinded by the man-made teaching of belief only.
Please tell me this, can the impenitent be saved?  Lk 13:3,5
Can the one who has not confessed Christ be saved?  Mt 10:32,33
Can the one not baptized be saved?  Mk 16:16; Acts 2:38.41.44

278 Stephanie August 16, 2013 at 2:41 pm

@Mh Peace was found long ago……..
Proverbs 27:17 As iron sharpens iron,
so one person sharpens another.
God Bless!

279 d taylor August 16, 2013 at 5:52 pm

here is a link on James
http://www.faithalone.org/journal/2002ii/wilkin.pdf
why do you feel like you can pronounce these people in John 12:42 not saved when there is no indication in the text to say that they were not saved.

280 d taylor August 16, 2013 at 8:09 pm

This shows how  churches have missused Romans 10:9 (I have posted this before) but am posting this again.  it seem like the group now posting could use the information in this area of the misleading teachings of the church.  in the area of confession of Christ across all denominations.
.http://www.faithalone.org/journal/1999ii/J23-99b.htm

281 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 8:36 pm

d taylor
d taylor posted “why do you feel like you can pronounce these people in John 12:42 not saved when there is no indication in the text to say that they were not saved. ”
Can  a belief only WITHOUT confessing Jesus Christ save, Matt 10:32,33?

282 d taylor August 16, 2013 at 8:58 pm
283 d taylor August 16, 2013 at 9:25 pm

unless you can show a verse that says a person goes to hell for not confessing Christ. you do not have any evidence that that is what Matthew 10:32,33 is saying.
why would the Bible have over 100 very clear verses saying that belief is what saves a person. and not one verse saying that a person goes to hell for not confessing Christ.

284 ShawneleShawSurplus August 16, 2013 at 9:50 pm

“Therefore whoever
confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in
heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before
My Father who is in heaven.”
Matthew 10:32-33
D Taylor, you write, “unless you can show a verse that says a person goes to hell for not
confessing Christ. you do not have any evidence that that is what
Matthew 10:32,33 is saying.”

The verse explains itself: if you will not confess Jesus before men, Jesus will not confess you before God.  You don’t think that means you cannot be saved if Jesus will not “confess” or claim you before His Father?

Romans 10:10 For
it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is
with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

1 John 4:15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.

285 d taylor August 16, 2013 at 10:01 pm

again show me a verse that says a person goes to hell for not confessing Christ. Matthew 10 32, 33 that yall keep posting says nothing about going to hell all the verse says is that will not confess a person before the Father. In the context that is refering to awards for the believer again read the link i posted about Romans 10: 9,10 and read that verse in the context what does it say at 10:14 to confess / call on Christ you have to be a believer
Romans 10:14 How are they to call on one they have not believed in? And how are they to believe in one they have not heard of? And how are they to hear without someone preaching to them ? 10:15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How timely is the arrival of those who proclaim the good news.” 10:16 But not all have obeyed the good news, for Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed our report?” 10:17 Consequently faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through the preached word of Christ.

286 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 11:04 pm

d taylor
Mt 10:32,33 or Rom 10:9,10 says nothing about rewards.  Denying Christ causes one to be lost, be denied by Christ.  John Gill, a Calvinist says of Mt 10:33 Christ “will deny them to be disciples, or that they belong to him; he will deny that he ever knew them, loved or approved of them; he will declare in the presence of his Father, his disapprobation of them, his indignation against them, that they are workers of iniquity; yea, he will do more, he will banish them from his presence, and send them into everlasting burnings.”  Robertson, a Baptist says of v33 ” saying “no” to Christ, complete breach. This is a solemn law, not a mere social breach, this cleavage by Christ of the man who repudiates him, public and final. ”  A. Clarke says “Let it be remembered, that to be renounced by Christ is to have him neither for a Mediator nor Saviour. To appear before the tribunal of God without having Christ for our Advocate, and, on the contrary, to have him there as our Judge, and a witness against us,-how can a man think of this and not die with horror!”  How will Christ be the propitiator of you sins when He will deny you, 1 Jn 2:2; 4:10; Rom 3:25?

287 d taylor August 16, 2013 at 11:21 pm

where is God in heaven right. well to appear before him a person must be in heaven right so how can a person who is in hell appear before God who is Heaven. The three people you posted obviously must  believe in a work salvation.

288 Lynn Mac August 16, 2013 at 11:36 pm

d taylor
If one does not confess Christ now, Christ will deny him on judgment day.
Therefore salvation is dependent upon a person’s obedient works as Rom 2:6-10 proves.
In Rom 10:9 confession is of equal importance and necessity as believing and both confession and belief come BEFORE salvation.
Rom 10:10 “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
Confession is UNTO salvation, that is, confession is in order to obtain salvation.

289 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 12:02 am

a person fate is sealed the monent they die.  Either they are in abbadon(hell) or they are in heaven there is no judgment to see if they make it to heaven. the moment a person believes in this life they have everlasting life now and forever and can not lose it. 
(of course if you believe in a works salvation i can see where you believe there will be a judgment to see if you have enough works to enter heaven but again that is not backed up in the Bible).
then for the believer there will be a judgment concerning their rewards Judgement seat of Christ. and the Great white throne judgment , The great white throne judgment is described in Revelation 20:11-15 and is the final judgment prior to unbelievers being cast into the lake of fire. that involves their level of eternal punshiment
again the salvation in the context (Romans 10) is a physical salvation from Gods wrath for disobediance of the believer or from enemies of God.  Romans 2 is speaking  of rewards for the believer  2:6 He will reward each one according to his works:  the word (reward) is right there in the verse.

290 ShawneleShawSurplus August 17, 2013 at 10:11 am

d taylor With regard to your handling of Romans 10 & Matthew 10, it is clear that you are not interested in using God’s Word to enlighten your understanding of God – to guide your paths but, rather, to prop up your doctrine…and where it does not prop up your doctrine, you manipulate it into saying something it clearly does not.  You can change that.

291 Lynn Mac August 17, 2013 at 11:48 am

d taylor
Rom 2:6-10 proves that God uses a man’s deeds (righteous or unrighteous) to judge where that man will be in eternity. See also Matt 25:31-46 where the type of WORKS  determines eternity; whether a man will  go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.  Both contexts of Rom 2 and Mt 25 have to do with EVERLASTING punishment or ETERNAL life not some “rewards”.
It is impossible for one to be saved without ever doing some type of work.  It takes obedient works in believing, repenting, confessing and being baptized to become a Christian and good works Eph 2:10 to remain a Christian.  No verse says “do nothing” to become a Christian or ‘do nothing’ to remain a Christian. A Christian can so sin as to fall away as Simon, Acts 8.

292 Faith Alone August 17, 2013 at 12:40 pm

“I think the guys are cool and I truly hope they are not holding onto their belief in the gospel + baptism for their salvation.”  Me too, I have never seen them preach gospel+salvation, but maybe that is intentional on their part, and they avoid it to avoid the controversy.  Either way, I used this issue as a teaching exercise for my own family.  Reinforce the true gospel, do your research,  and don’t fall into deception because things are not always what they seem to be.

293 Faith Alone August 17, 2013 at 12:48 pm

Baptismal Regeneration: The heretical doctrine that limits a mighty, sovereign, God’s power to the act of a sinful man.
“If this be your teaching, that regeneration goes with baptism, I say it looks like the teaching of a spurious Church, which has craftily invented a mechanical salvation to deceive ignorant, sensual, and grovelling minds, rather than the teaching of the most profoundly spiritual of all teachers, who rebuked Scribes and Pharisees for regarding outward rites as more important than inward grace.” ~Charles Spurgeon

294 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 1:34 pm

Have you read,  Why confess Christ the use and abuse of Romans 10:9,10 the link i posted.
again i will say this,  in a moment of time is all it takes for a person to have eternal life by faith in Christ. every second after that moment of belief,  is spent either losing or gaining rewards for life after death in heaven, the millennial reign of Christ and eventually on the new earth.  This is truth from the Bible.

295 r phillips August 17, 2013 at 1:43 pm

Except for Paul who had to wait three days

296 Lynn Mac August 17, 2013 at 1:45 pm

d taylor
Instead of reading links why not read the bible for the truth??
Rom 10:10 “….with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
I can only repeat what the bible says that being one confesses UNTO SALVATION.  One confesses in order to obtain savlation, one confesses in order to be saved.  One of many devasting verses to the false man made “faith only” doctrine. If I followed “faith onlyism” then why would I need a bible?  I would have to ignore/change  much of  what it says, so why own one?

297 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 2:04 pm

Paul was given the Gospel by Christ and believed like all other believers and later flowing discipleship he was baptised and growing as a believer and being used by God the author part of the New Testament.
just reading the Bible is not working for you,  if from it you believe that a person is given eternal life by works and not by faith in Christ.

298 r phillips August 17, 2013 at 2:07 pm

So can anyone explain to me why Paul’s faith alone was not enough to save him? We see him three days after meeting Jesus on the road to Damascus still in his sins and still without the Holy Spirit. He had been fasting and praying the whole time. After those three days Ananias was sent to him “so that he could be filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 9:17) and was commanded to “be baptized and wash away his sins, calling on His name” (Acts 22:16)
Why the three day delay in his salvation following his initial faith in Christ? Why was Ananias’ presence needed for Paul to be filled with the Holy Spirit? Why was he commanded to be baptized and why was he told it would wash away his sins?

299 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 2:35 pm

Acts 22:16 is parallel in thought. Saul of Tarsus was saved on the road to Damascus, as seen in Gal 1:11-12. Paul received his Gospel directly from the Lord Jesus and not from any man.
Ananias commanded Saul to be baptized so that he might receive the following: (1) forgiveness of his sins (Acts 22:16), that is, the same fellowship forgiveness seen in 1 John 1:9; (2) restoration of his eyesight (Acts 9:17); and (3) the filling of the Holy Spirit (Acts 9:17).
This explains why Ananias called Saul, “Brother Saul,” and why he didn’t command him to believe in Christ. Saul already believed in Christ for eternal life.

300 r phillips August 17, 2013 at 2:42 pm

How do you figure he was saved if he was still in his sins and without the Holy Spirit?

301 r phillips August 17, 2013 at 2:50 pm

Can you show me proof Paul was saved when Christ have him the gospel? Because I can you show you proof that after three days he was still in his sins and without the Holy Spirit which means he was inarguably not saved

302 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 4:36 pm

When Cornelius and company believed the words being spoken to them, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those listening. Then they were baptized in water. Water baptism was not required of them to receive the Holy Spirit. Why? Because they were not Jews living in the generation which crucified Christ. They had no need to separate from Judaism.
untill you understand the blasphemy of the holy spirit and its connection to Christ, and the Jews who rejected His offer of the Kingdom  in his first coming.  you will never understand what baptism, repentance and it connection to the Jews who particapted in the death of the Messiah and the rejection of the kingdom. still now Christ will not come back to earth untill the Jews believe that Jesus is the Messiah and repent of their sins. The New Testament church was preaching believe that Jesus is Messiah and repent of their sin for rejecting Him the first time, in hope that Christ would come back and setup the Kingdom in their life time.

303 r phillips August 17, 2013 at 4:52 pm

I have already explained what happened at the household of Cornelius multiple times, including to you. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit is what saves us, it is when the Holy Spirit comes to reside within us giving us a connection to Christ. The Holy Spirit fell upon ALL those who were listening at the household of Cornelius including those who were already saved. Then they began speaking in tongues. This means that the gift of the Holy Spirit, the very same that fell upon the apostles at Pentecost allowing them to speak in tongues, is what fell upon those that day and NOT the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
There is NO DISTINCTION between Jew and Gentile under the new covenant which is a face that is reiterated repeatedly throughout the NT and there is no difference in the way they enter into a covenant with God. Salvation, and the path to it, is the same for both Jews and Gentiles. Just another example of you changing the context to make the passages you disagree with fit your doctrine. You can find NO biblical proof that the path to salvation or the meaning of baptism is different for the Jew than the Gentile but I can find multiple scriptures saying there is neither Jew nor Gentile.
“For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.”” (Acts 2:39 NASB)
“But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13 NASB)

304 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 5:54 pm

do i need to say it again this involves the sin of  the blasphemy of the holy spirit  nothing to do with a covenant

305 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 5:58 pm

i would like you to post all the verses (I can find multiple scriptures saying there is neither Jew nor Gentile.”)

306 r phillips August 17, 2013 at 6:30 pm

Can you find any scriptures explaining this sin of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit and how baptism only forgives this sin for the Jew?
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28 NASB)
“And God, who knows the heart, testified to them giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He also did to us; and He made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith.” (Acts 15:9 NASB)
“For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.”” (Acts 2:39 NASB)
“a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all.” (Colossians 3:11 NASB)

307 Lynn Mac August 17, 2013 at 7:04 pm

d taylor
In Peter’s sermon to Cornelius Peter said God is not a respecter of persons “But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him” v35.  So here is your “works based salvation”.  Back in Rom 2:6-10 says God is not a respecter of persons but will judge each person based on works they did,  whether they did unrighteous or righteous works and those that WORK righteousness are accepted with God.  Psa 119:172 says “…all thy commandments are righteousness”.  So working righteousness means OBEYING God’s commands.  So God will not accept those that do not have righteous works.
Acts 11:14 says Cornelius would be saved by WORDS, so he was not saved by being baptized with the Holy Spirit.  Part of those saving words of the gospel of Peter was the command to be water baptized and Cornelius obeying that command would be his “working righteousness” and thereby accepted with God.  If he refused to be water baptized he would be rejected by God.

308 Lynn Mac August 17, 2013 at 7:18 pm

d taylor
It was God’s plan the gospel first go to the Jews then to the Gentiles, Rom 1:16.  Yet the Jews thought salvation was just for them and not the Gentile ‘heathen’.  God did 3 things in Acts 10 to prove to the Jews salvation was to be taken to the Gentiles, God 1) sent a angel to Cornelius to tell him send for Peter, 2) gave Peter a vision showing him Gentiles are not “unclean” 3) God baptized the Gentiles with the HS.  In Acts 11 Peter had to contend with the Jews in Jerusalem why he went to the Gentiles and Peter tells them these three God did.  The result of telling these 3 things God did convinced the Jews they were to take salvation to the Gentiles…”When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life”, v18.
Acts 10:47 “Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? ”  Why would Peter say this?  For Peter understood it was God’s plan salvation go to the Gentiles thru the means of water baptism.  And any Jew trying to forbid water baptism to the Gentiles would be trying to forbid salvation going to the Gentiles and would be going against the will of God.

309 Lynn Mac August 17, 2013 at 7:33 pm

d taylor
The apostles met in Jerusalem in Acts 15 to discuss circumcision.  During that meeting Peter rose up and said “we (Jews) shall be saved in the same manner as they (Gentiles)”  v11. So Jews & Gentiles are saved in the same manner.  Looking at the conversions in the book of Acts we have the Jews in Acts 2; Simon/Samaritans/eunuch in Acts 8: Saul in Acts 9; Gentiles in Acts 10: Lydia/the jailer in Acts 16; Crispus/Corinthians in Acts 18: a dozen Ephesians in Acts 19.  
What was the like manner way each Jew or Gentile was saved in all these conversions?
Faith only?  No
Saying a “sinner’s prayer”?  No
Baptism with the Holy Spirit?  No
Water baptism?  YES – YES -YES- YES – YES

310 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 8:45 pm

ok  i have to break this reply up into parts tried 5 times now and can not get it post as one post
Acts 2:40 With many other words he testified and exhorted them saying, “Save yourselves from this perverse generation!
Acts 2:40 peter tell the Jews to save themselves from this perverse generation. what generation is he speaking of the one that commited the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit in the context he is speaking of repentance and baptism being what saves them from the generation that commited the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit .

311 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 8:46 pm

2nd part
Notice after the the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit the emphasis Jesus places on this evil generation in Matthew. Peter is speaking about the same generation in Acts.
Matthew 12:39 But he answered them, “An evil and adulterous generation asks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.
12:41 The people of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, because they repented when Jonah preached to them – and now, something greater than Jonah is here! 12:42 The queen of the South will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon – and now, something greater than Solomon is here!
12:45 Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they go in and live there, so the last state of that person is worse than the first. It will be that way for this evil generation as well!”
Link to a study of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit
http://www.arielm.org/dcs/pdf/mbs003m.pdf

312 r phillips August 17, 2013 at 8:54 pm

Yeah none of those verses mention the sin of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit or there being a difference in what baptism means for a Jew vs a Gentile. Although Acts 15 says that Jews and Gentiles are saved in the same manner.

313 Lynn Mac August 17, 2013 at 9:04 pm

d taylor
d Taylor posted: “Acts 2:40 peter tell the Jews to save themselves from this perverse generation. what generation is he speaking of the one that commited the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit in the context he is speaking of repentance and baptism being what saves them from the generation that commited the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit .”
Why did you overlook the obvious here?  Why in the world would Peter tell those Jews to “save themselves” if there is no work they could do to be saved?
Peter just commanded them to repent and be baptized for the remission of sins (salvation) and if those Jews would obey (work righteousness) they would in that sense save themselves. /be accepted with God, Acts 10:35.
Amazingly you said yourself  that Peter”… is speaking of repentance and baptism being what saves them…”

314 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 9:47 pm

Try reading the whole context  Matthew 12:22- 50

315 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 9:54 pm

Paul has a verse for yall
12 Corinthians 1:6 And even if I am unskilled in speaking, yet I am certainly not so in knowledge. Indeed, we have made this plain to you in everything in every way.

316 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 10:02 pm

2 Corinthians  4:4 among whom the god of this age has blinded the minds of those who do not believe so they would not see the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God.

317 r phillips August 17, 2013 at 10:03 pm

“Therefore I say to you, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven people, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven. Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come.” (Matthew 12:31, 32 NASB)
A) where is your proof that this is a physical salvation? (Hint: there’s no such thing in the bible)
B) where’s your proof that 1) baptism is meant to forgive the Jews of this sin and 2) baptism means something different for the Jews and for the Gentiles?

318 Lynn Mac August 17, 2013 at 10:06 pm

d taylor
d taylor posted: “Try reading the whole context  Matthew 12:22- 50
The saving in Acts 2 is a physical salvation from the wrath of God for commiting the  blasphemy of the Holy Spirit  this not a spritual salvation. ”
————————————————————————–
The salvation Peter offered was baptism for  remission of sins – justification – spiritual salvation.
In Acts 2 Peter convicted his Jewish listeners of the sin of having crucified the Messiah.  Their conscience became guilty so they asked Peter what they must do.
Peter answered the by commanding them to repent and be baptized for remission of sins.
A Baptist minister would have answered their question by saying ‘you cannot DO anything lest you try and earn your salvation so just do nothing’.
Why is it people cannot see the night and day difference between the gospel answer given by Peter and a non-gospel answer given by a Baptist minister?

319 d taylor August 17, 2013 at 11:50 pm

A) where is your proof that this is a physical salvation? (Hint: there’s no such thing in the bible)
i guess Peter was not saved from drowning when he was walking on the water. or when he was freed from the prision by the angel of the lord, or paul when he was stoned, or when he was in the shipwreck at malta, or the viper bite on the island of malta

320 r phillips August 18, 2013 at 4:32 am

None of those scenarios fit this context. None of them were ever related back to his baptism. And except for the first one, I would say that all of those things happening to him actually help to prove my point. I’m not saying that nothing good can ever happen to a Christian (physically) I’m just saying we/they are never promised salvation from any physical danger we/them are in due to the wrath of God and baptism certainly is never related to being for that purpose.

321 r phillips August 18, 2013 at 8:15 am

Peter is also quite clear that his sermon that day of baptism and repentance is for everyone.
“For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.”” (Acts 2:39 NASB)
Those who are far off are the Gentiles! So this message to “repent and be baptized for the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit” Is for, and applies to, Jews and Gentiles alike and applies to us today.

322 r phillips August 20, 2013 at 8:57 am

d taylor So.. can you offer no biblical proof that this forgiveness of sins and gift of the Holy Spirit in Acts 2:38 is actually referring to a physical salvation from the wrath of God? Can you offer no biblical proof that baptism has a different meaning/purpose for the Jew vs. the Gentile? Have you no comment on Acts 2:39 which proves that the message in Acts 2:38 is applicable to everyone, Jews and Gentiles alike and even us today?
I’m sure you remember we had this same conversation on this same thread a few months ago. And once I pointed out Acts 2:39 to you you stopped responding to me. It appears this is what you are doing again. If there are verses you disagree with or that “stump” you it is time to change your doctrine, not just ignore the verse and the person who is trying to show you the truth. You cannot mold the bible to fit your doctrine, your doctrine must be molded to fit the bible. On the other hand, if you have proof to support your position I would like to hear it. So which is it?

323 d taylor August 21, 2013 at 12:10 am

still can not post large amount of text so breaking this in to 2 post or three
I have showed several times form the Bible that eternal life is by faith plus nothing. i have posted links to many excellent articles explaning many areas of the Bible concerning salvation. and have showed in acts 2:40 where Peter calles the Jews to save themselves, with that being in the context of Acts 2:14 to 2:41 he is addressing the Jewish people to save themselves from the generation (the Jewish nation) who committed the sin of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit (which was a national sin) and the judgment that God brought in 70 a.d. with the destruction of Jerusalem. He has instructed these Jewish believers to save themselves( we know that this is a physical salvation because a person can not save themselves Ephesians 2:8,9 Titus 3:5 2 Corinthians 1:9 with many more verses stating this truth).

324 d taylor August 21, 2013 at 12:11 am

2nd part
To do that they have to do two things to seperate from the Judaism (that caused the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit) that was part of the sin, the two things to do was repentance and baptism. As for the claim he is addressing gentiles far away in acts 2:39 (the audiance was Jewish) is just another false, twisting application of scripture you use to prop up your santanic work salvation. The first 7 chapters of Acts, in the first 7 chapters the second sign of Jonah is rejected, the stoning of Stephen, in Acts 7 by the Sanhedrin marked the offical rejection of the second sign of Jonah (the Resurrection of Jesus). That is why in chapter 8 the gospel go out to the non-Jewish world.
As for me not answering you on our last disscussion May 17, 2013 you were the one who did not reply to my post i ask you
Why does your teacher have to take Acts 2:38 and import it into the Cornelius verses. when the context of the verses about Cornelius never even hint at their baptism being for forgivness of sins.
and you never replied.   So either your memory is failing or you are just a plain liar

325 r phillips August 21, 2013 at 6:10 am

1) I have still seen no biblical evidence that baptism means something different for the Jew vs. the Gentile. Peter telling them to “save themselves” is NOT proof that he isn’t talking about eternal life and acts 2:39 DOES prove that the message is for everyone.
“For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, EVERYONE whom the Lord our God calls to himself.”” (Acts 2:39 ESV)
“But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13 ESV)
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28 ESV)
You saying the proof it is a physical salvation is because we can’t save ourselves is ridiculous. God offers us no physical salvation. The only thing he cares about is our eternal salvation and that is why he is offering the forgiveness of sins and the Holy Spirit here, so they may be saved. No where does it say that for the Jew there is one way and for the gentile there is another.
“Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.” (Romans 6:3, 4 ESV)
Here is Paul explaining to the Romans how they were united with Christ by baptism and through it raised to walk in newness of life. This where they died to sin and became united with Christ in his death. A very powerful passage and one that directly links their moment of salvation to their baptism.
Your argument is based off of the assumption that you’re right . You did not offer me any biblical proof as I requested that this is physical salvation (other than we can’t save ourselves) or proof that baptism means something different for the jews. I however, have proof (whether ir not you choose to accept it) that Acts 2:38 applies to everyone and baptism means the same thing to the Gentiles according to Roms 6.
Before I believe we were having conversations in more than one place. I distinctly remember asking you about Acts 2:39 and never getting a response. I also remember deciding not to respond to you because he had been over Cornelius several times and I didn’t think it was necessary to keep repeating myself.

326 Stephanie August 23, 2013 at 3:42 pm

Jesus is the Gospel.

327 Stephanie August 23, 2013 at 3:45 pm

We
are saved the moment we realize that we are wretched sinners who have been
living in disobedience to God’s Holy standard and that we deserve everlasting
torment and punishment in hell because of this and that there is nothing we can
do ourselves to fix this condition or to save ourselves.Jesus Christ was born, lived a perfect life, and
was crucified on the cross, where he took God’s wrath, the punishment we all
deserve.He died, and he rose from the
grave on the third day, which shows that God accepted Christ’s sacrifice for
our sins. Now, the moment we believe this message, we are saved, because we
know in our heart/soul that this message is true and our heart/soul cries out
to God in repentance and confession, and God says we are “not guilty”, and He
imputes the righteousness of Christ to us, and we are forgiven of all of our
sins, past, present, and future, not because of our righteousness, but because
of Christ’s righteousness. Sometimes our belief/conversion is verbally spoken
out loud and confessed, maybe even in a spoken prayer at the time of our
conversion, but it does not need to be said with actual words, because the
mouth merely confesses what the heart/soul speaks and God knows the heart of
every man.

328 Stephanie August 23, 2013 at 3:46 pm

We
then follow God with an obedient, transformed, heart and are baptized, which
just like in the ancient Jewish tradition of mike, symbolizes our new identity
in Christ of going from a state of impurity to purity, and of having our sins
washed away by the blood of Christ, and of making a public display and
pronouncement of our conversion unto Christ, and our newness of life. The Holy
Spirit comes to dwell in us at the time of our belief/conversion. In fact, the
Holy Spirit was already working in us to open our eyes and circumcise our
hearts unto God before we were even able to believe the message of the gospel
because we are so wicked by nature that none of us would seek out God or come
to belief on our own. God knows this.

329 Stephanie August 23, 2013 at 3:47 pm

What is the purpose of the law? To show us our sin, to convict and condemn
us, to show us we are sinners in need of a Savior, to lead us to salvation in
Christ. What is baptism?Baptism is a
command of God, which makes it a law. The Bible says we are not saved by the
law.If we put ourselves under the law
for our salvation, which means ANY law or command of God, that we are then
obligated to keep the WHOLE law 100% and if we stumble and break so much as 1
of God’s commandments we are damned. We are not saved by the law; we do not
live by the law. We are new covenant Christians, we are under grace, we are not
under the law, and we live life not by the law.We live life in the Spirit, by the Spirit, and from the Spirit (Galatians
5). We LOVE, why do we love? Because, if we LOVE, we have fulfilled ALL of the
commandments of God! So, do not let yourselves be bound again by a yoke of
slavery by those who would have you believe that any act of obedience is
required for your salvation.

330 Stephanie August 23, 2013 at 3:47 pm

Galatians 1:6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who
called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— 7 not
that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to
distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should
preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be
accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching
to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed. 10 For
am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man?
If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.

331 Stephanie August 23, 2013 at 3:47 pm

Galatians 3:10 For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for
it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in
the Book of the Law, and do them.” 11 Now it is evident that no one is
justified before God by the law, for “The righteous shall live by faith.” 12
But the law is not of faith, rather “The one who does them shall live by them.”
13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for
it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree”— 14 so that in
Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we
might receive the promised Spirit through faith.

332 Stephanie August 23, 2013 at 3:48 pm

Galatians
5:1[ Christ Has Set Us Free ] For freedom Christ has set us free;
stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.

333 Stephanie August 23, 2013 at 3:48 pm

Galatians 5:4 You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the
law; you have fallen away from grace. 5 For through the Spirit, by faith, we
ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. 6 For in Christ Jesus
neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith
working through love.

334 rjmcclur55 September 18, 2013 at 5:11 pm

It’s interesting that one can “explain away” the necessity of baptism in light of the evidence to the contrary. The idea of “praying for salvation” is NEVER mentioned in the Scripture, and yet people insist upon this unscriptural position in lieu f the truth. It’s not surprising! The devil is busy trying to get people to believe anything other than the truth! (See Acts 22:16; Acts 2:38; 1 Peter 3:21; Romans 6:4-8; Colossians 2:11-12; Mark 16:15-16; Matthew 28:18-20.) Every convert in the Book of Acts was baptized! I don’t know all about the Robertsons or their congregation. But as far as baptism is concerned,  . . . Way to go Duck Dynasty!

335 Katzenjammer September 20, 2013 at 3:08 am

Please watch it before you blah blah blah your religious blah blah. I wonder what errors you have in your doctrine? Leave them alone. Go blah blah on someone else. Has God led you out of error? Do you know the whole truth seeing through a glass vividly? What do you do for a living? Just post all your so called trumpet truth? Do you get paid for your bible thumping? I am being honest to you- check your own heart and let God bring people out of Eygypt His way.

336 Mark Lamprecht September 20, 2013 at 11:34 am

Katzenjammer Leave that family alone? Their church evangelism trainer is teaching folks to convince me (and those who believe like me) to be re-baptized so I can be truly saved. So, are they the judges?

337 Katzenjammer September 20, 2013 at 5:29 pm

The Lord will lead them. The denomination that you are from has also emotionally manipulated me down an isle many times as a kid. Got me stuck in legalism.Then Jesus called me and I followed Jesus. HE called me to repentance and it wasn’t walking down an isle to a hymn (Which can be good too) called me out of error from a fundametalist group, lead me out of errors, trials, false doctrines. I asked him to take away that that which is not of him. I’m sure He will till my great gettin up mornin.
Can’t you pray for them and trust God to do that for another brethern group?  Everyone gets their sword,ready to tell all, go after them and make known the truth as they see it–tell all about what to be careful of.
I’d like to ask you a question although I know you will have something theological from your pocket. Do you remember when Jesus said, “Whoever Is Not Against Us Is for Us” ?
Teacher,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.”Do not stop him,” Jesus said. “For no one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me or whoever is not against us is for us.Truly I tell you, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to the Messiah will certainly not lose their reward.

338 Anita Miotti September 25, 2013 at 1:10 pm

PEACE..to all,
Act 16:30  And he brought them out and said, “Sirs,
what must I do to be saved?”
Act 16:31  So they said, “BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AND YOU WILL BE SAVED, you and
your household.”
-It is clear here, that all they had to
do to be SAVED was to BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST.
Act 16:32  Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him
and to all who were in his house.
-THEN the word(gospel/good news) was
presented to the family.^^Acts 16:32
      Part of the gospel is Christ’s EXAMPLE of
being baptized (with water) “to fulfill all righteousness”Mat 3:15  (Jesus’
words)
     *water
baptism to fulfill all righteousness…not
to SAVE
Righteousness – n =Referring to
in the keeping of or fulfillment of the LAW.
Merriam-Webster Dictionary
righteous – adj.
            : morally good : following religious
or moral laws
Mat 3:13  Then
Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him.
   
   Mat 3:14  And John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I need to be
baptized by You, and are You coming to me?”
       Mat 3:15  But Jesus
answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus
it is fitting for us to fulfill all
righteousness.” 
        Then he allowed Him.
Act 16:33  And he took them the same hour of the night
and washed their stripes. And
immediately he and all his family were baptized.
       -Here, they are following Jesus’ example of being baptized but it was NOT
said in Act 16:31 , “BELIEVE ON THE
LORD JESUS CHRIST+ be      baptizedAND YOU WILL BE SAVED”
Act 16:34  Now when he had brought them into his house,
he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his
household.
Mat 3:11  I indeed baptize you with water unto
repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I
am not worthy to carry. He will BAPTIZE
you with the HOLY SPIRIT and FIRE.
 -John mentions here^^another type of baptism…Baptism with the Holt Spirit and Fire. Like
that mentioned in Acts 2?

Mat 3:13  Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the
Jordan to be baptized by him.
Mat 3:14  And John tried to
prevent Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to
me?”
Mat 3:15  But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all
righteousness.” Then he allowed Him.
Mat 3:16  When He had been baptized, Jesus came up
immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He
saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.
Mat 3:17  And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My
beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
       -It
is part of the Christian walk to follow Jesus’ example and be baptized in water, the Holy Spirit, fire.
 All part of the equipping to be useful    for the furtherance of the Kingdom. and it is good to have discussions…in Love…iron DOES
sharpen iron.
            -ALSO…the
greatest example is Jesus and His love,
and the greatest commandant….
Mat 22:36  “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?”
Mat 22:37  Jesus said to him, ‘YOU
SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH
ALL YOUR MIND.’
Mat 22:38  This is the first and great
commandment.
Mat 22:39  And the second is like it: ‘YOU SHALL
LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’
 -and let’s not forget, By this all will
know that we are His disciples, if we have LOVE
for one another.
Joh 13:34  A new commandment I
give to you, that you love one another;
as I have loved you, that you also love one another.
Joh 13:35  By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have
love for one another.
-Also, Let us not discount the evidence of the Holy Spirit in people’s
lives by the fruit they exhibit. The fruit of LOVE, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
gentleness and self-control.
-Primary doctrine is BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AND YOU
WILL BE SAVED.
      After
that we have the rest of our lives to be HIS students. To grow and experience
the excitement of discovering His unfathomable character and truths as He
shapes us and molds us everyday more and more into His image!!  Glory!!
-Secondary doctrine is okay to discuss so
long as we are not pushing people AWAY from Christ with our anger and the pride
of “being right”.
SHALOM
:D

339 Coy November 2, 2013 at 9:49 pm

@Anita Miotti James 2:19  “You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror.”  NLT.  So, are the demons saved also?  They believe, right?

340 EmailBibleStudies December 3, 2013 at 7:34 pm

Baptism is the response to belief in the gospel.  Ever notice that the examples in Acts shows a person getting baptized immediately upon belief? One may quote Acts 16:31, and even 32, but why is verse 33 left out? What did they do immediately after Paul spoke the word of God to them? And if you read Acts 16:34, why did they rejoice? Same with Acts 8:34-39, why did the eunuch rejoice after he came up out of the water? The answer lies in what the Bible says the purpose of baptism is for.. read Acts 2:38, Mark 16:15-16, Romans 6:3-4, Colossians 2:11-12, Galatians 3:26-27 and 1Peter 3:20-21. And read them with fresh new eyes and an unbiased mind. :)

341 Waterdawg December 7, 2013 at 11:06 am

To clear all this confusion up:  I have a close friend who has attended a home Bible study with Jase Robertson and he does believe and teach that baptism is essential for salvation.

342 ldhope December 10, 2013 at 11:20 am

All this debate over BAPTISM? I simply ask; Is it a command? Do you obey commands? If you love Jesus I think the answer is obvious if not then that is obvious too. So why all this debate? Just obey the command just like any other command. “if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it?”

343 Lauriem December 22, 2013 at 8:09 pm

d taylor Ananias called Saul, “Brother Saul because he was a Jew just as he was.

344 BlakeBabin December 23, 2013 at 4:33 pm

Mark Lamprecht 

Ephesians 4:5
One Lord, one faith, one baptism,

No such thing as being re-baptized , either you were baptized correctly into The ONE baptism ( which is stated above) which is baptism into Christ death or, you were not.

345 BlakeBabin December 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm

@Stephanie  
1st Corinthians 15: 1-4 

1-4 is the main bulk.
As you can see Paul in verse 1 is stating “the gospel” meaning what he was about to say is the gospel. The Gospel is not Jesus himself but what Jesus did for us so that we can be saved.

15 Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.
3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance[http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Corinthians+15#fen-NIV-28722a]: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas,[http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Corinthians+15#fen-NIV-28724b] and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, 8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.

346 Bighoss December 24, 2013 at 11:50 am

The notion that the
apostle Paul was saved before he was baptized, as believed and taught many evangelicals, is simply not supported by scripture.
 Paul, after asking, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” was
instructed by the Lord,  to “Arise, and go into the city, and it
shall be told thee what thou must do.”  (Acts 8:6) Paul himself
recounts what he was told once he had gone into Damascus and found Ananias, a disciple the
Lord had chosen to instruct Paul.  He was told simply this, which ought to
settle any question of whether he had already had his sins forgiven and been
saved on the road to Damascus:
 “And now why tarriest thou? Arise and be baptized and wash away thy
sins, calling on the name of the Lord.” (Acts 22:16)  Had Paul’s sins
been been somehow  washed away on the road to Damascus? Obviously not, else Ananias would
not have told him what to do in order to have his sins washed away.  
The often taught notion
that baptism can not have anything to do with salvation is based on the
incorrect characterization of baptism as a “work.” Since we are
 saved by “works”, it is argued that baptism, being a
“work” has nothing to do with salvation.  But the scriptures
nowhere teach that baptism is a work of merit.  Baptism is simply a part
of the lost sinner’s acceptance of that salvation that is offered by the grace
of God.  No one is arguing that repentance is a “work,” but
repentance is necessary for salvation.  Repentance is something the lost
sinner must DO in order to accept that salvation offered by the grace of God,
but it is not a work of merit. Neither faith, repentance, nor baptism (all of
which are necessary elements of the sinner’s obedience to the gospel) are
“works”.
The documented history of the church  shows that
baptism was considered necessary for forgiveness of sins for about the first
1400 years of Christian history.  Early reformers like Calvin and Zwingli,
in their over-reaction to the Catholic Church’s reliance on works of merit,
erroneously characterized baptism as a “work” and thus concluded,
erroneously, that baptism was not necessary for forgiveness of sin.  Their
error, unfortunately, has been widely propagated.

347 ERJ December 28, 2013 at 6:09 pm

What Is The Purpose of Baptism?
The Scriptures are not so unclear that one has trouble determining what the purpose of baptism is. Rather denominational creeds and dogmas force people to deny the clear statements of Scripture with reference to baptism. Consequently, let us reiterate the purpose of Bible baptism.

1. Mark 16:16. In giving the Great Commission, Jesus said, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned” (Mk. 16:15-16). Jesus gave two conditions for salvation – belief and baptism. If one must believe in order to be saved, then surely he must also be baptized. Hence, baptism is a condition for salvation in exactly the same manner as belief is.

2. Acts 2:38. After Peter preached the first gospel sermon, the Jews who heard the sermon and were pricked in their hearts asked Peter and the rest of the apostles what they had to do in order to be saved. Peter said, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Acts 2:38). Repentance and baptism are here listed as conditions for receiving the remission of one’s sins. If an individual can understand that he must repent of his sins in order to receive the forgiveness of his sins, he can also understand that he must be baptized in order to receive the forgiveness of his sins. Both conditions are named as being essential for remission of one’s sins.

3. Acts 22:16. When Ananias approached the believing and penitent Saul of Tarsus, he told him, “Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord” (Acts 22:16). This man had seen the resurrected Christ and believed on him; for three days he was in agony because of the sins which he had committed. Yet, he was not yet saved. Ananias told him that he must be baptized in order to have his sins washed away. Hence, baptism is essential to have one’s sins washed away.

4. 1 Pet. 3:21. Peter related how that the waters of the flood had saved Noah from the wickedness of the world in which he lived. He then added, “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh; but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” The plain statement of Scripture is that baptism saves us. Peter did not believe that baptism alone saved anyone; he is simply stating what Christ said in the Great Commission and what he also had said on the day of Pentecost, namely that baptism is a condition for salvation.

5. 1 Cor. 12:13; John 3:5. Another line of argument which demonstrates that baptism is essential to salvation is seen in these passages in which baptism is said to be necessary to enter the kingdom of God (John 3:5) and to enter the church (I Cor. 12:13). There are only two kingdoms in this world – the kingdom of God’s dear Son and the domain of Satan (Col. 1:13-14); one is either a member of Jesus’ kingdom or he is a member of Satan’s kingdom, lost in sin, and doomed to hell. Yet, Jesus said, “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God” (John 3:5). One must be born of the water – be baptized – in order to become a part of God’s kingdom.
Similarly, one enters the church. The church is simply composed of the called out people of God; they have been called out of the darkness of sin into the light of God’s word. The saved compose the Lord’s church (Acts 2:47; Eph. 5:23, 25). One becomes a member of the Lord’s church by being baptized into it. Paul wrote, “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body” (1 Cor. 12:13). Hence, one becomes a member of the called out people of God by being baptized into that one body. Hence, baptism is essential for salvation, for becoming a member of the kingdom of God or the church of our Lord Jesus Christ.

6. Matt. 28:19. In Matthew’s account of the Great Commission, Jesus said, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” One translation reads like this: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit . . . .” This is more accurate than the AV. Jesus said to go make disciples; the participal- clause “baptizing them” explains how one makes disciples. Hence, in order to become a disciple of Jesus Christ, he must be baptized. Without becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ, one cannot be saved (Jn. 14:6; Acts 4:12).

348 larry gordy July 3, 2014 at 9:43 pm

Mark 16-16 He who has believed & has been baptized shall be saved.Luke 16-31 some wont believe if one rose from the dead. Author;;;JESUS!

349 Brian Riviere July 26, 2014 at 2:15 pm

THIS IS THE WORD

Check out this formula in Mark 16:16.
Check out this solution in Acts2:37,38.
Check out this answer in 1 Peter 3:21.

350 susan July 28, 2014 at 10:50 am

Before His Ascension into Heaven in Acts Chapter 1:8, Jesus said, “But ye shall receive power, after that the HolyGhost is come upon you..” The Disciples (and Mary, the Mother of Jesus – Acts 1:14) were in the Upper Room praying for this Promise. In Acts 2:4 says “And they were ALL filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” The people that were looking on, asked if they were drunk with a new wine? (Acts 2:13). The Bible says in Acts 2:37, that they were pricked in their hearts and asked, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” Peter said in verse 38-39, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye SHALL receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the Promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” This is the Plan of Salvation – the New Covenant, for which Jesus died.

351 Mikal Suremur August 26, 2014 at 6:35 am

I’m a lifelong SBC, but recently changed my view on this due to Lutheranism. ?: Where in Scripture is it symbolic?

352 Mikal Suremur August 26, 2014 at 6:38 am

asking the question because I’m really interested in understanding. I’ve been taught baptism is symbolic. Can’t find refer.

353 Matt Fortunato September 12, 2014 at 2:36 pm

Mikal Suremur, Just as a place to begin, the Bible as a whole sets the precedent that external, visible rituals (even those commanded and required by God), do not bring about internal, Spiritual effects (O.T. worship, sacrifices, Temple, circumcision, etc.) The external and visible symbolize and proclaim the internal and Spiritual, but does not bring it about. This guides our interpretation of both the Lord’s Supper and of Baptism. In the verses on both of these, the language is literal — but it is perfectly acceptable to use literal language when describing symbolic realities.

A good place to see the meaning of baptism is when John baptizes Jesus in John 1:29-34. The purpose of the baptism is to identify (“that he would be revealed…) Jesus as the Lamb of God, as the Son of God, and as the one who will baptize with the Spirit. Jesus does not become the Son, but his baptism declares him, or identifies him as such. He is endowed with the Spirit’s power for his ministry, but he does not for the first time come into relationship with the Spirit. He is marked and publicly declared to be the one who will baptize with the Spirit, but this is simply symbolizing and proclaiming who Christ already was. Quickly, the Bible as a whole also sets the precedent that saving faith (the heart’s trusting in Christ alone for salvation) is concurrent with the reception of the Spirit and of salvation. And this is referring immediately and directly to an internal, Spiritual reality itself. Some of the main cross references are, Ephesians 1:13; Galatians 3:2-6 and 14; Romans 10:9-10; 1 John 5:1; Acts 10:44-48. Colossians 2:11-12 bring together the reality (being circumcised in the heart by the risen Christ through faith, which is the very thing baptism is meant to show us, declare about us, and guide us in our sanctification. Just as Christ’s baptism identifies him as Savior and symbolizes that he will baptize with the Spirit, our baptism identifies us as saved and symbolizes that we have been baptized by the risen LORD with the Spirit.

I believe the heart of this debate is differing definitions of faith. Those in the Church of Christ believe that faith saves — but include obeying the command to be baptized within their definition of faith. The other view is that faith saves — and that saving faith leads to obeying the command to be baptized. So, one side includes the response of faith in the definition of “saving faith,” while the other says “saving faith” happens in the heart by the Spirit, and necessarily leads to the response of faith.

354 Ken W. September 27, 2014 at 1:54 am

I have the perspective of having attended and been a member of both Southern Baptist Churches and various churches of Christ. In my opinion, salvation is an issue for God to decide. Only he knows a person’s heart and soul. I’m also certain that there are those who have been either baptized at churches of Christ or accepted Christ at a Baptist church that will hear from Jesus … depart from me, I never knew you.

Neither saying a prayer or getting dunked in some water saves. Accepting Christ and living in him daily. Dying to yourself daily, so you can look for the ways the Holy Spirit is working in your life and those around you. That is what is important.

Some believe that baptism is essential to salvation as an expression of their faith. Other believe that it is not “necessary.” My only question to those that believe it’s not necessary is, “Why wouldn’t you follow through and go ahead and be baptized?” Christ was baptized, Paul was baptized, Cornelius was baptized. We have example after example. Whether baptism is an outward expression of our faith or a critical component to it, shouldn’t we all do it if possible? Shouldn’t we do all that we can to please Him?

For the Baptists out there … If someone at White’s Ferry church of Christ accepts Christ, confesses their belief, repents of their sins and is then baptized for the remission of their sins, weren’t they added to the church the moment they accepted the moment they accepted? Where have they been led astray if the preachers there tell them they should also be baptized? The church there is just following the biblical example provided in the New Testament.

For the church of Christ out there … If someone at a Baptist church in Texas accepts Christ, confesses their belief, repents of their sins and is then baptized as an outward show of their faith, are they not a Christian? If they literally died walking up the steps to the baptismal, who among you would claim they were not a Christian? No one.

Salvation is a matter of the heart for God to determine and no one else. Read the scriptures for yourself. Determine what it means to you. Do what you think is right after reading it. Seek after Him every day. Stop arguing with other Christians over their beliefs. Let Him sort out our hearts when we see Him on judgment day.

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