Baptismal regeneration is the belief that a person must be baptized in order to  be saved. It is our contention that baptism is an important step of obedience  for a Christian, but we adamantly reject baptism as being required for  salvation. We strongly believe that each and every Christian should be water  baptized by immersion. Baptism illustrates a believer’s identification with  Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. Romans  6:3-4 declares, “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.” The action of  being immersed in the water illustrates dying and being buried with Christ. The  action of coming out of the water pictures Christ’s resurrection.

Requiring anything in addition to faith in Jesus Christ for salvation is a  works-based salvation. To add anything to the gospel is to say that Jesus’ death  on the cross was not sufficient to purchase our salvation. To say we must be  baptized in order to be saved is to say we must add our own good works and  obedience to Christ’s death in order to make it sufficient for salvation. Jesus’  death alone paid for our sins (Romans 5:82  Corinthians 5:21). Jesus’ payment for our sins is appropriated to our  “account” by faith alone (John 3:16; Acts 16:31; Ephesians 2:8-9).  Therefore, baptism is an important step of obedience after salvation but cannot  be a requirement for salvation.

Yes, there are some verses that seem to  indicate baptism as a necessary requirement for salvation. However, since the  Bible so clearly tells us that salvation is received by faith alone (John 3:16; Ephesians  2:8-9; Titus 3:5),  there must be a different interpretation of those verses. Scripture does not  contradict Scripture. In Bible times, a person who converted from one religion  to another was often baptized to identify conversion. Baptism was the means of  making a decision public. Those who refused to be baptized were saying they did  not truly believe. So, in the minds of the apostles and early disciples, the  idea of an un-baptized believer was unheard of. When a person claimed to believe  in Christ, yet was ashamed to proclaim his faith in public, it indicated that he  did not have true faith.

If baptism is necessary for salvation, why  would Paul have said, “I am thankful that I did not baptize any of you except  Crispus and Gaius” (1  Corinthians 1:14)? Why would he have said, “For Christ did not send me to  baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross  of Christ be emptied of its power” (1  Corinthians 1:17)? Granted, in this passage Paul is arguing against the  divisions that plagued the Corinthian church. However, how could Paul possibly  say, “I am thankful that I did not baptize…” or “For Christ did not send me to  baptize…” if baptism were necessary for salvation? If baptism is necessary for  salvation, Paul would literally be saying, “I am thankful that you were not  saved…” and “For Christ did not send me to save…” That would be an unbelievably  ridiculous statement for Paul to make. Further, when Paul gives a detailed  outline of what he considers the gospel (1  Corinthians 15:1-8), why does he neglect to mention baptism? If baptism is a  requirement for salvation, how could any presentation of the gospel lack a  mention of baptism?

Does Acts  2:38 teach that baptism is necessary for salvation?

Does  Mark 16:16 teach that baptism is necessary for salvation?

Does  1 Peter 3:21 teach that baptism is necessary for salvation?

Does  John 3:5 teach that baptism is necessary for salvation?

Does  Acts 22:16 teach that baptism is necessary for salvation?

Does  Galatians 3:27 teach that baptism is necessary for  salvation?

Baptismal regeneration is not a biblical  concept. Baptism does not save from sin but from a bad conscience. In 1 Peter 3:21, Peter clearly  taught that baptism was not a ceremonial act of physical purification, but the  pledge of a good conscience toward God. Baptism is the symbol of what has  already occurred in the heart and life of one who has trusted Christ as Savior  (Romans  6:3-5; Galatians  3:27; Colossians  2:12). Baptism is an important step of obedience that every Christian should  take. Baptism cannot be a requirement for salvation. To make it such is an  attack on the sufficiency of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

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