A nice lady commented on salvation and baptism with the following statement:
“HIS DEATH WAS ALL THAT WAS NEEDED FOR US TO BE SAVED. BAPTISM IS DONE AS OBEDIENCE TO HIS COMMAND BUT NOT FOR SALVATION, BUT AS A WITNESS TO OTHERS THAT WE ARE NOW FOLLOWERS OF CHRIST. READ ALL YOUR BIBLE NOT JUST PORTIONS. START AT GENESIS AND READ TO THE END. GALATIANS IS CLEAR THAT WE ARE NOT SAVED BY WORKS. BUT WE DO WORKS BECAUSE WE ARE SAVED NOT TO BE SAVED. WORK IS A NATURAL RESULT OF SALVATION.”
You said his death was all that was needed…
Well, do we need to confess and repent to be saved?
You said Baptism is done for obedience….
True, who would do it by force?
You said baptism is not for salvation….
1 Peter 3:21 says “baptism saves you” because Peter explains in baptism you appeal to God for salvation. Pre-noahic world couldn’t be saved by God’s grace unless they got in the boat. Sinners today cannot be saved by God’s grace unless they get baptized. Peter says baptism is for salvation.
You said baptism is a witness for others….
I know of no verse that teaches this.
You said we are not saved by works but we work because we are saved….
Jesus said ‘unless you repent, you will perish’, Lk 13:3. And Peter said in Acts 3:19, ‘repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away.’ Jesus and Peter do not say you repent BECAUSE your sins are forgiven. Just as in Acts 2:38, ‘repent and be baptized…for the forgiveness of your sins.’
We are certainly saved as a gift by grace. But the question is on what basis and when? We are saved on the basis of faith that distinguishes us from the faithless. And faith if it has no works is dead. That fact stated by James does not conflict with grace for when you do God’s will in faith, you are not earning salvation. It is still a gift. So salvation is on the basis of obedient faith (see Romans 1:5; and 16:26) and saving grace is received when we are washed in the blood at the point of immersion into the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (compare Matthew 28:18-19 and Mark 16:15-16).
Before you leave this earth, I pray you will be baptized to have your sins washed away. God bless you. Dan