Summary: Now I know that many people have a problem with the idea that baptism is for the remission of sins . . . To them, baptism has nothing to do with GOD’S plan of salvation. To them, to suggest baptism is necessary . . . is to deny we are justified by
Following Jesus without Denominationalism
Part 4: ‘Is Baptism a Necessary Part of the Gospel?’
When you are out there busting your rear to make ends meet, we all have a tendency to put things on a ‘back burner’, and make plans to get them at a later date. The problem comes in where that later date always seems to get pushed further and further, making it almost impossible to catch up.
Thus is the case with me the last few weeks, as I have been working extremely hard to get things organized and put together in an attempt to keep Ministries Outreach above water. And today’s economy doesn’t seem to show much signs of improvement . . . but you know what? We are all trusting GOD that HE will touch the right people to help keep us going.
At any rate, I do apologize for the delay in getting this series out.
In this series, I have been suggesting that following JESUS without denominationalism begins by heeding the call of the gospel . . .
Mainly because the LORD ‘calls’ us through HIS gospel, as we see in 2nd Thessalonians 2: 14:
“Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
And as we respond to the call, the LORD HIMSELF adds us to HIS church, as HIS ‘called out’ group of people, and NOT some man – made denomination.
Acts 2: 41 & 47:
“41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.”
“47 Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.”
In the previous message, I presented to you the gospel of CHRIST as containing the following . . .
(1) Facts to believe:
** JESUS was crucified for our sins
** JESUS was raised from the dead
** JESUS is exalted as KING and SAVIOR
** JESUS is coming again
(2) Commands to obey
** Believe the gospel concerning JESUS CHRIST
** Confess your faith in JESUS as LORD
** Repent of your sins
** Be baptized fir the remission of your sins
** Be faithful unto death
(3) ‘Promises’ to receive . . .
** The remission of sins
** The gift of the HOLY SPIRIT
** The gift of eternal life
Looking at various cases, I have personally found that there is very little exemption taken to the above, save for one thing . . . the suggestion that baptism is a necessary part of the gospel of CHRIST.
Now I know that many people have a problem with the idea that baptism is for the remission of sins . . .
To them, baptism has nothing to do with GOD’S plan of salvation.
To them, to suggest baptism is necessary . . . is to deny we are justified by grace through faith.
And finally . . . to them, to teach baptism is for the remission of sins . . . is to teach a salvation by works, not by grace.
Now this goes out and raises the key question asked by so many:
‘Is Baptism a Necessary Part of the Gospel?’
To put it another way:
Is baptism really for the remission of sins?
If so . . . then how can we say that we are justified by grace through faith, and not by works?
A lot of questions that can really lead even the smartest of Christians to being undecided . . .
I personally believe it is helpful to answer these questions by first observing a few quotations by certain individuals none would ever question of denying that we are saved by grace through faith . . .
(1) The words of Augustine, Aquinas and Luther . . .
Augustine . . . whom lived from A.D. 354 – 430 referred to the efficacy (effectiveness) of baptism when he wrote:
“The salvation of man is effected in baptism, as he is baptized for the express purpose of being with Christ.”
In regards to the necessity of baptism, he wrote:
“Apostolic tradition, by which the Churches of Christ maintain it to be an inherent principle, that without baptism . . . it is impossible for any man to attain to salvation and everlasting life.”
Thomas Aquinas . . . whom lived from A.D. 1225 – 1274 wrote these words:
“ . . . Men are bound to that without which they can obtain salvation. Now it is manifest that no one can obtain salvation but through Christ . . .”
“But for this end is baptism conferred on a man, that being regenerated thereby, he may be incorporated in Christ.”
“Consequently it is manifest that all are bound to be baptized: and that without Baptism there is no salvation for men.”