The following is the introduction to answering this question “When was Paul actually saved” by “Let us Reason” website which believes Saul was saved on the road and not three days later when Ananias taught him. Notice the crafty error right from the start.
I believe the Scripture proves Paul was saved on the Damascus Rd. not afterwards when he was baptized. Why? Because He, and the Scripture says so. We need to distinguish that one being baptized in water is not baptized in Christ by the spirit- Jesus said so in Acts 1:5 and was proven in Acts 2 when they were in the upper room. This distinction is made later by Peter who recounts what the Lord said about the difference between water baptism and spirit baptism that they witnessed with the Gentiles in Acts10. Acts 11:16-18 “And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, as upon us at the beginning. “Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, ‘John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.'” http://tinyurl.com/mhhxezz
First, there’s some very important information left out from the “let us reason” article which can only pretend to make its case: it does not once quote from Acts 22 which says,
“Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.’”
This is Saul/Paul’s own retelling of his conversion and the article never mentions it. Ananias is telling the guy that saw and heard Jesus 3 days earlier, when he was supposedly saved on the road to Damascus, to get up and be baptized so his sins will be washed away! It makes sense though. If you have a weak case, don’t bring up scripture that would destroy your position. The article quotes Acts 26 and Acts 9 to show when Saul was forgiven but leaves out the verse that is most pertinent to the question. And if Saul was saved three days earlier, there would be no sins to wash away. The article chooses not to deal with that troubling information.
Now why do I say this was a crafty error at the beginning? Instead of dealing with the text, ignoring important information about the conversion in Acts 22 and the verse where Ananias commands Saul to get up and be baptized and wash away his sins, the “let us reason” first redefines baptism into a spiritual baptism. Thus the reader is diverted into a confusing and half-truth discussion on holy spirit baptism and away from reading how Saul needed to first be taught by Ananias to get up and be baptized to wash his sins away. Holy Spirit baptism is not commanded by Jesus; water baptism is commanded (Mt 28:18-20; Mk 16:16). When “let us reason” website diverts the attention to a discussion of water versus holy spirit baptism, the point is craftily diverted from the clear bible verse. Water baptism is commanded but holy spirit baptism is not commanded. Saul was commanded.
Saul was NOT saved three days earlier because Saul still had his sins.
By the way, there are other dodges, out of context references, overstatements of the facts and such that I could address but it’s just too tiring to deal with these people. Read it and see if you find more errors.
Sincerely, Dan
1. http://www.letusreason.org/Biblexp215.htm

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