Skip to comments.Baptism Now Saves
Posted on 02/19/2012 4:28:52 PM PST by pastorbillrandles
He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.(Mark 16:16)
Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. 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:(I Peter 3:20-21)
Today in our local church, we celebrate the hopeful end of a long draught the first baptism in more than a year and a half. True, our two baptisms amount to a cloud the size of a mans hand but we humbly rejoice! As it is written,despise not the day of small beginnings.
In contemplating baptism, I have been meditating on the scriptures above. In what sense could it be said that baptism now saves us? I know that it is faith in Jesus blood that has procured the pardon and status of righteousness that I needed in order to flee the wrath of a righteous and holy God!
The Christian author Watchman Nee, an early but profound influence on my discipleship is helpful here. In the book Love Not The World , Nee points out that the word salvation is used not in a general but in a specific sense.
Nee points out that every detail of our sinful and God estranged existence has been answered to by the work of God in Christ. For example, because of our spiritual death, God gives eternal life. Sin has ruined the old creation, but God makes a new creation. Since man is under a just but severe condemnation, through Jesus, God offers man justification by faith. Redemption is multi-faceted.
Another facet of mans ruin is the fact that he has been born and raised, in this world. The term the world , in the new testament usually refers to God estranged humanity as it has organized itself, independently of and to the exclusion of the only true God. It is the greek word Cosmos, meaning the order or adornment.
Thus salvation is not so much a personal question of sins forgiven or of hell avoided. It is to be seen rather in terms of a system from which we come out. When I am saved, I make my exodus out of one whole world and my entry into another. I am saved now out of that whole organized realm which Satan has constructed in defiance of the purpose of God.(Watchman Nee,Love Not The World,Christian Literature Crusade)
The Word of God says of the World;
* It is already under a judgment- Jesus said, Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.(John 12:31) The sentence has already been passed, the world is already judged by God , the Lord is uncompromising in his resolution. As in the days of Noah, the execution of the sentence hangs over the world like a cloud, the day of Divine vengeance draws near!
The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth. Upon the wicked he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup. For the righteous LORD loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright(Psalm 11:5-7)
* The real ruler of the world is Satan- In the scripture above, Jesus referred to the prince of this world, who would be cast down, at the judgment of this world. Jesus would later proclaim that in the coming of Judas ,the prince of this world comes .. Who was he referring to? Satan, the real god of this age, and the mind behind the world system.John, the Lords apostle warned us that the whole world lies in the wicked ones power.
We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one. (I John 5:19 NASB)
* The world hates Christ- If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you ( John 15: 17-18)
Dont let the world deceive you with its platitudes about Jesus as a good man or a philosopher, the world hates the real Jesus of the Bible. He offends them because he tells them that they arent right, and that they need to be saved, and worse yet, that they cant even save themselves!
The world has crafted another christianity that is more to their liking, but it is anti-christ.They hate the real Christ and would crucify him again if given a chance.That is why the world has always persecuted christians wherever possible.
* The love of the world and the love of the Father are mutually exclusive - John reveals this truth to us, in this admonition of his epistle;
Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (I John 2:15)
Therefore we are saved out of this world! In this sense do Peter and Mark proclaim that baptism saves, or that he that believes and is baptized will be saved. In baptism, we are stepping over the line of demarcation, exiting the doomed world, even as Noah did , through the water.
Remember that Israel never really left Egypt until she crossed the Red Sea. Egypt went in with her, but never came out the other side as she did. There is no real leaving of the ties of this world, without a valid new testament baptism whenever possible.
Two brothers, left the World today, calling upon Jesus! They went from one Kingdom to another, they crossed the Red Sea! They passed through the flood of Judgment into the Kingdom of Light! They justified God! Hallelujah!!
True but it is much more than that...including the command of our Lord, the justification of God(Luke 7), among other things. All I have done in the title of my article was to quote the Apostle Peter,
What about the scripture you gave me would make me believe that I, as a Gentile, would have "life through his name" during His earthly ministry?
I pray for the day you all come home to your Mother.
From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
85 "The task of giving an authentic interpretation of the Word of God, whether in its written form or in the form of Tradition, has been entrusted to the living teaching office of the Church alone. Its authority in this matter is exercised in the name of Jesus Christ."47 This means that the task of interpretation has been entrusted to the bishops in communion with the successor of Peter, the Bishop of Rome.
86 "Yet this Magisterium is not superior to the Word of God, but is its servant. It teaches only what has been handed on to it. At the divine command and with the help of the Holy Spirit, it listens to this devotedly, guards it with dedication and expounds it faithfully. All that it proposes for belief as being divinely revealed is drawn from this single deposit of faith."
No, That is John’s answer as to why he wrote his gospel, not just to the Jews but to all of us. Thank you Jesus for the gospels.
**”I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius..and I baptized also the household of Stephanas besides I know not whither I baptized any other. For Christ sent me NOT TO BAPTIZE, BUT TO PREACH THE GOSPEL...” 1 Cor. 1:14,16,17. Hmmm. something DIFFERENT appears to be happening here.**
So Paul openly admits to baptizing souls in Corinth, but then says that God sent him not to baptize. Nothing is different from what happened in Acts chaps 2,8,10,and 19. He was admonishing some souls that were boasting of the name of the great preachers that had baptized them instead of the name of who was crucified for them. He also baptized at least a dozen in Ephesus. He later wrote an epistle to the saints (already born again) at Ephesus. That what all of the epistles are; letters to those souls in already established churches, instructing them on how to serve God.
**Acts is a transitional Book.**
Acts is the historical record of the beginning of the church, what it taught, and places it spread to. Jesus Christ commanded “that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in HIS NAME among all nations, BEGINNING AT JERUSALEM.” (Luke 24:47) This command is initially enacted in Acts 2, with Peter’s sermon culminating with verses 38 and 39.
20 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. 21 Corresponding to that, baptism now saves younot the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good consciencethrough the resurrection of Jesus Christ,
Peter is making an analogy between the great flood and baptism . It seems to me that he is using the outward action of baptism as a symbol of inward belief. This is why he mediately clarifies what he means when he says "now baptism saves you."
Where Peter writes "not the removal of dirt from the flesh" he is describing the physical/outward action of baptism. Its not the physical act of baptism but the "appeal to God for a good consciencethrough the resurrection of Jesus Christ" that saves. The physical act of baptism is the outward expression of the inward belief.
So rather than confuse us as to whether or not water baptism is required for salvation, this scripture should help us gain a better understanding of what salvation is. As Nee put it:
"Thus salvation is not so much a personal question of sins forgiven or of hell avoided. It is to be seen rather in terms of a system from which we come out. When I am saved, I make my exodus out of one whole world and my entry into another. I am saved now out of that whole organized realm which Satan has constructed in defiance of the purpose of God."(Watchman Nee,Love Not The World,Christian Literature Crusade)
This is just my understanding of 1 Peter 3:21. I think we are in agreement on this but to be honest, its a little hard to understand exactly what you believe based on this article.
So, I can try to understand scripture for myself and risk being wrong or I can accept the Roman interpretation and not run any risk of being wrong but rather have complete assurance of being wrong. I'll take my chances where I at least have a chance.
from the article-I know that it is faith in Jesus blood that has procured the pardon and status of righteousness that I needed in order to flee the wrath of a righteous and holy God! What is hard about understanding that? That is what I believe about the gospel.
There need be no confusion, for neither Peter nor any apostle, and certainly not my article, made water baptism a requirement for salvation. The article is a Meditation on what Peter meant when he said that Baptism saves, and what Mark meant when he said "he that believes and is baptized shall be saved".
The conclusion? That the use of the word "saves" or "saved" refers to the christian's exodus out of this world. I didn't intend it, but this sure stimulated a good discussion! Thanks-
No pastor, I don’t believe that is correct, in the literal sense.
Perhaps your article says as much.
I was in a hurry to get to a party and just wanted to make a note that would remind me this article is important.
I am going to read your article with an open mind but, I assume you are of the Protestant faith as only a Mormon or Catholic believe in the literal Baptism completing your salvation and membership into their church or doctrines.
I have no argument with the Catholic faith. I don’t believe their requirements for salvation must include Baptism. But that is a small issue for me.
Mormonism, with it’s polytheistic, transhuman ascendancy is a totally irrelevant religion for its obvious self indulgent arrogance.
I will read your article and attempt to reply without a Concordance and from memory as best as possible.
So just quickly I thought of the answers to your reply.
I Peter 3:21 wasn’t a bad attempt but when I started to consider why and how we are saved, I also had to consider the context of the quote and could it be supported anywhere else.
On the latter it cannot, at least in the context of your concern.
The salient or key issue is how does one achieve salvation or arrive at it.
The 1st thought I had was of the three great parables in Mathew 13 “Pearl of Great Price”. I am sure you know it well, almost any Christian will be familiar with it.
We cannot commit any act to obtain salvation, it is given by God through Jesus Christ.
If we buy, barter or commit to anything extra then salvation would cease being a gift of God.
In fact, Jesus Christ paid the price for our sins with his life and we have been told there is but one 0thing we can do to receive his salvation:
The only act we can commit is the change in spirit and with humility come before God and accept his gift.
That’s it. No other act is required and no other act can be used as value to God for your salvation lest Jesus Christ’s act means nothing and our salvation is not true.
No Pastor, my baptism is an outward expression and witness to others of my changed spirit. The act of baptism is to show others I have literally been washed, died of my old life and risen in my new life.
So I read all of 1 Peter 3 and still have to come to the conclusion your hypothesis or belief may be in error.
“The like figure....” is what throws me and it literally means “Similar but not the Same”.
The verse is an analogy not an absolute.
Baptism is like putting on a wedding ring - the ring doesn’t make you married, but it serves as an open symbol of the union. Asking Christ into your heart as your Savior, in acknowledgement of His sacrifice as a forgiveness of your sinful nature, is what saves you - it’s a personal relationship and requires no outside entity or substance to seal the deal - His Love and Grace do that.
Baptism remains what it is referred to as being in Scripture.
Baptism cannot save-it is only a sign of our salvation.Meaningless unless one believes in his heart that Jesus is our Salvation.Without prior belief and repentance Baptism is just a dunking.Little different than the Jewish ritual washing.
It is much more than that. It is a symbol of the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord. It does *not* save you nor is water baptism needed to save you.
Baptism does save you, as an appeal to God for a good conscience according to the apostle Peter-
NOone is saying that belief in Jesus is un- neccessary! I am reffering to scriture in my article! It is Peter who said Baptism saves,”not as a washing of filfth, but as a appeal to God for a good consceince!” I seriously doubt many of you even rea the article, just the title. Your arguing against Peter, the apostle, not me!
Yes Similar and not the same to the way that by the flood, Noah escaped the judgment of his world, and by baptism(which is an appeal to God for a good conscince through the ressurection of Jesus), we seperate ourselves from this doomed world.
No one is saying that being baptised “makes you a christian”. Have you read the article? or are you merely reacing to the title and some of the comments of others who obvioously didn’t read the aticle ? In the article itsellf I stated that I know that Jesus’ blood purchased our pardon... therefore I was exploring how is it that Peter is saying “Baptism now saves...”. “Saves” as used by Peter is in refference to “the world”, that by our public confession of the death, resurrection of Jesus we break off our relationship with Peter.
n 1 Peter 3:18, Peter gave the gospel, the fact that "Christ died for sin once and for all , the just for the unjust, to bring us to GOd..." so the real question is how after that could he state that Baptism saves?
This is the context of I Peter 3:20-21. It is how the flood of Noah relates to baptism; as Noah was delivered from his doomed world by the waters of God's judgment, even so the waters of Baptism serve to deliver us,(Not the washing of filth, for baptism doesn't "cleanse" or :"redeem us), but as an"Appeal to God for a good conscience through the ressurrection of Jesus. I
Your last statement contains part of what I believe Peter is getting at, The act of baptism is to show others I have literally been washed, died of my old life and risen in my new life. Baptism saves in the sense that we clearly seperate ourselves from the doomed world in which we were once a part.
No, you have to throw out a lot of other scripture to even support that.
Sirs, what must I do to be saved? They replied, Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be savedyou and your household.
Nothing about baptism.
Romans 10:9 -13 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. 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. As Scripture says, Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame. For there is no difference between Jew and Gentilethe same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
Nothing about baptism.
Romans 1:16 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.
Nothing about baptism.
Ephesians 1:13-14 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.
Nothing about water baptism.
Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Nothing about (water) baptism.
Saying baptism saves you just isn’t supported by scripture. Baptism is an EXTERNAL proclamation of what has spiritually already happened to you.