Re: Is Baptism Important?
Well, as one person already said, 2 Tim 3:16 “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness.”
For starters, I have written a 9 page document that was a response to this post. This is obviously way too large. In it I have the quoted Scriptures and some of the explanation of them. If you want, pm me and I will email you this document.
The answer to the question, “is baptism essential for salvation”
The answer is No. Not only no, but No. In fact, baptism doesn’t even save you from one sin. It can’t.
In my document I do a couple of things. First, I talk about how people have misread John 3:5. They are not taking this verse into context at all. Jesus is talking only about rebirth in the Spirit. Also, if baptism is essential Jesus would have focused and talked about it much more. Instead, all he talks about is belief.
Second, I talk about how baptism cannot forgive sins. That only blood can, and only Christ blood can.
Third, I give the Martin Luther argument of Salvation through faith alone using Paul’s letters.
Please note. I think baptism is important and can easily be linked with salvation. But that is not the question here. The question is if it is essential in being saved or justified by God. Also, this is an extremely shorten version of my paper. But I think you can see for yourselves. So here are the verses used. In spots where I list v15 and 16 separate. Its because I think they make extremely important remarks that one should ponder on.
Jn 3:5, Jn 3:6, Jn 3:7-8. Jn 3:9, Jn 3:15*, Jn 3:16*, and Jn 3:18* (that is all one conversation)
Jesus further teachings in John of belief (but never baptism) Jn 3:36, Jn 5:24, Jn 5:38-39, Jn 6:35-36, Jn 6:40, Jn 6:47, Jn 8:24, Jn 11:40. (some of these are condemning. Not saving. Notice the reason for condemning though. It is not a lack of baptism, but a lack of faith.)
Can baptism forgive sins. No. Only Jesus’ blood can. For this it is
Heb 9:11-22. Specifically 9:12, 9,15, and 9:22* Liv 17:11. For what 22 is referring to. And this states very clearly that baptism cannot forgive sins. Leads into chapter 10 with more to read. Focusing on 10:14-18. verse 18* no need for baptism for forgiveness of sins.
Salvation by faith alone.
Hab 2:4 (not a type-o. Starts with OT)
Ro 1:16-18, Ro 3:22-25, Ro 3:28-31, Ro 4:1-3, Ro 4:13, Ro 4:14, Ro 4:15 (cf Ro 5:13), Ro 4:16, Ro 4:23-25, and Ro 5:1-2. I encourage further reading in romans. Also for these, please not when the word therefore is used to start a verse. This has to point to something previously. As in the previous first. Since we have point A, THEREFORE into point b. Without point A point B is not made.
Gal 1:6-9, Gal 2:16, Gal 3:1, Gal 3:2, Gal 3:3, Gal 3:5, Gal 3:6, Gal 3:7, Gal 3:8, Gal 3:10, Gal 3:11, Gal 3:14, Gal 3:23-25.
Since some like Acts, throw in Acts 13:39.
Again, this is extremely condensed. Please pm if you want the whole document. I do think baptism is important and talk about this in my document. Every christian should be baptized. No argument there.
As far as it being justified by baptism. Some have already mentioned Acts 10:44-48. Also notice Acts chapter 8. Where they were baptized in the name of Jesus but did not receive the Holy Spirit.
As far as the Holy Spirit not saving us. Look at Romans chapter 8. How does the Holy Spirit testify?
It guarantees us our inheritance. And as 1 John 5 says on all that testifying stuff that this post started on. If the Spirit testifies one way, so must the other 2. For it says they are in agreement. Not sometimes. So it is all the time. Also notice how 1 John 5 starts. Those who believe are children of God.
May grace and peace be with you.