Baptism -- Why Be Baptized?
“And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to the whole creation. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that disbelieveth shall be condemned” (Mark 16:15-16).
Jesus put salvation after believing on him and being baptized. The salvation is forgiveness and absolution of past sins. God is the one who forgives and saves. Some speak of it as being pardoned. Pardon is only known by man when God has declared it. These words of Jesus tell us that in order to be pardoned, the believer must be baptized.
Being baptized into Christ is not sacramental as our Catholic friends are called on believe. It is an act of faith. The gospel is what must be believed. “He that believeth” believes what Jesus told his disciples to preach -- the gospel.
Baptism is connected to faith by the conjunction “and.” It is not as our denominational friends are called on to believe, that one is saved by faith only, before and without being baptized. They would change the order of the words of Jesus to “He that believeth is saved and is then baptized.”
“Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and the rest of the apostles, Brethren, what shall we do? And Peter said unto them, Repent ye, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ unto the remission of your sins; and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:37-38).
The design of baptism is set forth by Peter, speaking as the Holy Spirit guided him (John 16:13). It is “for (unto) the remission of sins.” Believers who repent of their sins, are forgiven when they are baptized for the remission of sins. There are two things a believer in Christ must do: repent and be baptized. Repentance and baptism are also connected with the conjunction “and.” Either by itself is of no value. Baptism must follow faith and repentance, not to precede either.
The word “for” in “for the remission of sins,” comes from the Greek word “eis.” That makes in necessary in order to obtain forgiveness. This preposition, as translated in the American Standard Version of the Bible has the sense of “in order to obtain,” not because something has already happened. It has the same meaning in Acts 2:38 as it does in Matthew 26:28.
“And he took a cup, and gave thanks, and gave to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many unto remission of sins.”
What the blood of Christ was “for” in Matthew 26:28, baptism is “for” in Acts 2:38.
The apostle Peter wrote of those who were saved in Noah’s day and stated,
“Which also after a true likeness doth now save you, even baptism, not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the interrogation of a good conscience toward God, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (1 Pet. 3:21).
This clearly says we are saved by baptism, “by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” To say that baptism doesn’t save is to deny a plain statement from the Bible. Baptism saves the penitent believer whose faith is in the risen Savior.
If one has not been baptized, that one is not saved. If one has not been baptized for the remission of sins, or to be saved, that one is not saved. If you, dear reader, have not been baptized for the remission of sins, we urge you to do so now.
Questions about this article are welcome. Valley church
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