Credo-Baptism Answers Does Mark 16:16 teach water Baptism Required to be saved?

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Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
I have been discussing this with an Evangelical Lutheran, and he has been using this verse to support that we must be water baptized in order to have sins forgiven and to be regenerated?
He also has been standing upon Acts 2:38 on this issue also.
 

SeanPatrickCornell

Puritan Board Sophomore
1. It seems that many if not all of the comments by church fathers on the matter think that baptism was crucial to salvation.

2. How do we know that the thief on the cross wasn't one of the thousands of people baptized by John the Baptist? ;)

3. I don't think it stretches Calvinism too much to assume that God will infallibly decree both the fact as well as the means of salvation for all of His elect. If baptism were necessary to salvation, then I would assume that God's Providence would ensure that baptism came to each one of the elect.

4. Comments on Points 1-3 above notwithstanding (I merely mentioned them for sake of argument), I don't believe that Mark 16:16 or any other passage of scripture teaches that salvation is impossible without water baptism. I believe that water baptism is a normal means of grace, but He is certainly within His sovereign prerogative to work in extraordinary ways in extraordinary cases if He so wills.

EDIT TO ADD [For the benefit of future spectators]: This post was in reply to a post that has since been deleted.
 
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Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
1. It seems that many if not all of the comments by church fathers on the matter think that baptism was crucial to salvation.

2. How do we know that the thief on the cross wasn't one of the thousands of people baptized by John the Baptist? ;)

3. I don't think it stretches Calvinism too much to assume that God will infallibly decree both the fact as well as the means of salvation for all of His elect. If baptism were necessary to salvation, then I would assume that God's Providence would ensure that baptism came to each one of the elect.

4. Comments on Points 1-3 above notwithstanding (I merely mentioned them for sake of argument), I don't believe that Mark 16:16 or any other passage of scripture teaches that salvation is impossible without water baptism. I believe that water baptism is a normal means of grace, but He is certainly within His sovereign prerogative to work in extraordinary ways in extraordinary cases if He so wills.
Are you saying that you agree with him concerning baptismal regeneration?
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
1. It seems that many if not all of the comments by church fathers on the matter think that baptism was crucial to salvation.

2. How do we know that the thief on the cross wasn't one of the thousands of people baptized by John the Baptist? ;)

3. I don't think it stretches Calvinism too much to assume that God will infallibly decree both the fact as well as the means of salvation for all of His elect. If baptism were necessary to salvation, then I would assume that God's Providence would ensure that baptism came to each one of the elect.

4. Comments on Points 1-3 above notwithstanding (I merely mentioned them for sake of argument), I don't believe that Mark 16:16 or any other passage of scripture teaches that salvation is impossible without water baptism. I believe that water baptism is a normal means of grace, but He is certainly within His sovereign prerogative to work in extraordinary ways in extraordinary cases if He so wills.
I would agree with you that once we have been saved, in order to be in fullobedience to Jesus, should then be water baptized, but you are not agreeing with Him that the rite regenerates us, are you?
 

KMK

Administrator
Staff member
you are not agreeing with Him that the rite regenerates us, are you?

No one on PB is going to agree that water baptism regenerates anyone.

WCF: "V. Although it is a great sin to contemn or neglect this ordinance, yet grace and salvation are not so inseparably annexed unto it, as that no person can be regenerated, or saved, without it: or, that all that are baptized are undoubtedly regenerated."

LBC: "Baptism is an ordinance of the New Testament, ordained by Jesus Christ, to be unto the party baptized, a sign of his fellowship with him, in his death and resurrection; of his being engrafted into him; of remission of sins; and of giving up into God, through Jesus Christ, to live and walk in newness of life."

 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
No one on PB is going to agree that water baptism regenerates anyone.

WCF: "V. Although it is a great sin to contemn or neglect this ordinance, yet grace and salvation are not so inseparably annexed unto it, as that no person can be regenerated, or saved, without it: or, that all that are baptized are undoubtedly regenerated."

LBC: "Baptism is an ordinance of the New Testament, ordained by Jesus Christ, to be unto the party baptized, a sign of his fellowship with him, in his death and resurrection; of his being engrafted into him; of remission of sins; and of giving up into God, through Jesus Christ, to live and walk in newness of life."
That would be the place where the Lutheran took great exception to, as His view was that Acts and Mark indicate we must be water baptized, as that is a God ordained channel/means of grace.
 

Pilgrim

Puritanboard Commissioner
David, did you intend to put this in the credo answers forum or the general baptism forum? It's not clear to me why you'd limit it to Baptists.

An antipaedobaptist immersionist who believes you have to be baptized to be saved is in the company of Campbellites and Oneness Pentecostals.
 

Pilgrim

Puritanboard Commissioner
I do think there is a sense in which baptism is our profession of faith, rather than an "altar call" or the sinner's prayer or some other act.

We baptistic folks are wont to emphasize that in pagan cultures, it is often baptism that gives rise to persecution moreso than a profession of faith or other actions. In the NT it is "Believe and be baptized" over and over again but we want to wait for weeks, months, or even a year or more baptizing those who have evidently been converted. We want to avoid false converts as much as we can and we want to avoid implying that baptism saves or that it is absolutely necessary for salvation. But I wonder if too much of a divorce is made in an attempt to get as far away as we can from those errors.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
David, did you intend to put this in the credo answers forum or the general baptism forum? It's not clear to me why you'd limit it to Baptists.

An antipaedobaptist immersionist who believes you have to be baptized to be saved is in the company of Campbellites and Oneness Pentecostals.
I was not sure where to place this question, so did it here, as was a question concerning water baptism proper.
Lutherans have always been hard for me to fully understand, as while not catholic, they do seem to be close enough to how they view water baptism and the Sacraments to really question what they do hold with and why?
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
I don't want to step out of bounds by posting in the credo-baptism-only thread, but I feel that this is helpful enough regardless of baptismal persuasion.

Archibald Hall in Gospel Worship indicates that Mark 16:16 means the opposite of that:

2. It is another very dangerous and absurd opinion, that there is no salvation without baptism. This doctrine is very hard indeed; but the comfort is, it is not true. That it is not true, may appear from such considerations as these. (1.) Persons previous to baptism, may have all that is necessary to salvation; and if so, they must be certainly saved. Before they are baptized, they may receive the word gladly, Act 2:41; they may have received the Holy Spirit, Act 10:45, 47; they may fear God, Act 10:35, 38. (2.) The thief that was crucified together with our Lord, was saved without baptism, Luk 23:43. (3.) This is still more evident from Mar 16:16, where our Lord expressly says, “He that believeth, and is baptized, shall be saved; but he that believeth not, shall be damned.” He that believeth the report of the gospel of the grace of God, and in token of his submission to the righteousness of Immanuel, is baptized, and receives that seal of the righteousness of faith, shall inherit eternal life: but he that believeth not with the heart unto righteousness, let his confessions be what they will; be he baptized or not baptized, he shall be damned, and shall not see life. It is very observable, he does not say, he that is not baptized shall be damned; but only he that believeth not shall be damned. If baptism had been absolutely necessary to salvation, this would have been a necessary part of that assertion. (4.) This opinion makes means too important, and particularly renders sacramental ordinances quite another thing than they were ever designed to be. Instead of being only signs of God’s gracious covenant, and seals of the righteousness of faith, it makes them necessary working causes of man’s salvation. (5.) Hereby the keys of the unseen world and of death are put into the hand of men, who, upon this principle, can, at their own pleasure, make passes either to heaven, or hell. But rejoice, O daughter of Zion, that thy King reigns; and there is but one that has the key of David, that opens, and no man shutteth, that shuts, and none can open.We might well say, Wo to the earth! if it were in the power of a selfish and peevish order of men, to dispose of happiness and damnation, according to their humor.
Thanks, and the point that makes most sense to me is the way that whoever does not believe in the Lord Jesus, even if they had received water baptism, will be damned, would refute infant baptismal regeneration.
 

Herald

Administrator
Staff member
Dachaser,

The question to ask is what do you believe? Are you in agreement with what our confession has to say about baptism? Have you settled in your mind that baptism is not a requirement for salvation? This does not diminish baptism's importance or significance. Outright refusal to be baptized reveals a rebellious heart which may indicate an individual has not come to genuine faith in Christ. Knowing the truth helps protect us from dangerous teachings.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
Dachaser,

The question to ask is what do you believe? Are you in agreement with what our confession has to say about baptism? Have you settled in your mind that baptism is not a requirement for salvation? This does not diminish baptism's importance or significance. Outright refusal to be baptized reveals a rebellious heart which may indicate an individual has not come to genuine faith in Christ. Knowing the truth helps protect us from dangerous teachings.
I hold that the scriptures teach that we are water baptism after we have already received Jesus as our Lord, as we have been indwelt by the Holy Spirit Himself, and then we get immersed in the water.
 

Herald

Administrator
Staff member
I hold that the scriptures teach that we are water baptism after we have already received Jesus as our Lord, as we have been indwelt by the Holy Spirit Himself, and then we get immersed in the water.
That is the correct view. Hold firm to the truth and do not let erroneous doctrines trouble you.

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