Church of Christ and Baptism

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Salty, Jan 15, 2014.

  1. Salty

    Salty
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    On a FB page I am in a discussion about Baptism.

    Now here is what they are saying:

    1) There is absolutely nothing in the Scriptures to tell us whether or not the thief was baptized prior to the cross. We know nothing of this man's life. We don't even know for sure what his crime was.

    2) "...BAPTISM NOW SAVES YOU..." (1 Peter 3:21)

    3) One more thing...Jesus had the power to forgive sins when He was on earth. He is no longer walking the earth.

    4) Baptism is WHEN a person is saved, not HOW.

    She has repeated these items several times - (sounds like someone in the thread about the most evil man in America)
     
  2. BobRyan

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    True - and as for the Baptism part same goes for Moses and Elijah that appear along with Christ in Matt 17 - except in their case we are 100% they were not water baptized by immersion.

    True - but the text goes on to say "NOT the magical touch of sacramental waters (blessed by a priest) on the flesh - but rather the APPEAL to God for a clean conscience". (First half paraphrased for our Catholic friends).

    "The Earth" did not give Jesus any powers at all. In Matt 28 Jesus says "ALL POWER has been given to me" and then tells us to go preach the Gospel.

    If you are not talking about the "Appeal to God for a clean conscience" then it is neither.

    Having said that - I believe in believer's baptism in full water immersion as the only valid Bible form of Baptism.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  3. ktn4eg

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    Matthew 3:14-15 states: "But John [the Baptist] forbad him [Jesus], saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness. Then he suffered him."

    IMHO, two points arise from this passage:

    1. If water baptism is needed to cleanse one from his/her sin(s), from what sin(s) did the sinless Son of God need to be cleansed?

    2. Jesus Christ Himself declared that water baptism is a "righteous work [act]." OTOH Titus 3:5-7 clearly states: "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life."
     
  4. mman

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    Instead of trying to protect prior beliefs, just go to the bible and read about baptism.

    The thief lived and died under the old law. The new law did not go into effect until after the death of Jesus as shown by the Hebrew writer. Even then, it was not proclaimed until the day of Pentecost (Acts 2).

    Before his death, Jesus gave the great commission. He said, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, he that believeth not shall be condemned" - Mark 16:16

    Jesus was not confused or misleading. This verse tells us what to do to be saved and what to do to be condemned. You need help to misunderstand this verse.

    This was first practiced in Acts 2. The people heard and believed the message. They were cut to the heart. They asked what they must do.

    What would be your reply? Peter's was to repent and be baptized for the remission of their sins (Acts 2:38). What would you have done if you had been in that crowd? If you wanted the remission of yours sins, you would have repented and been baptized that very day.

    Compare Acts 2:38 with Acts 3:19

    Repent = Repent
    Baptized = Be Converted
    For the remission of sins = That your sins may be blotted out

    For the remission of sins. Compare Acts 2:38 with Matt 26:28. Same greek phrase used in the same grammatical sense.

    Every conversion recorded in scripture has only one element in common, baptism at the first available opportunity. NOWHERE in scripture was anyone told to say a sinner's prayer. NOWHERE in scripture was anyone not informed about baptism when being taught the gospel for the first time.

    How did the eunuch know about water baptism when Phillip only preached Jesus (Acts 8:35-36)? Preaching Jesus includes instructions for water baptism. There is no other logical conclusion that can be reached.

    Saul had prayed for 3 days, was obviously sorry, yet told to arise and be baptized and wash away his sins (Acts 22:16).

    There are only 2 passages that tell us how to get INTO Christ. Both of them tell us we are baptized into Christ (Rom 6:3-4, Gal 3:26-27). Notice Gal 3:26-27, "For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ."

    We are sons of God by faith because we have been baptized INTO Christ.

    II Thess 1:8 says that vengeance is coming to those who do not obey the gospel. What does it mean to obey the gospel? I Cor 15:1-4 tells us the gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. How do you obey an historical event?

    Rom 6:3-6 tells us that we do that in baptism, which is a death, burial and resurrection. There is no other way in scripture that shows us how to "obey" the gospel.

    When Jesus' side was pierced, blood and water came out (John 19:34). We come in contact with the blood which flowed at his death in baptism. We are baptized into his death (Rom 6:3). There is no other scripture that tells us how we are connected to Jesus' death.

    I Pet 3:21 - There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,

    This verse says something saves us. What is it?

    What greater lie would the devil want than for mankind to believe that baptism is not essential for salvation? Many sincere folks with argue with Jesus on the judgment day (Matt 7:21-23). I believe it will be because they did not truly obey the gospel by being baptized for the remission of their sins.

    Oh, and the only work associated with baptism is done by God (Colossians 2:12). Baptism is not a work of merit any more than looking on a brass serpent, or dipping in the Jordan river 7 times, or marching around a walled city. Some people's definition of a work would include confession and repentance also, since those are things we must "do".

    Most people do not understand biblical faith. Heb 11:30, - the walls of Jericho fell by faith. Jericho was a gift (Josh 6:2). They were given instructions, they obeyed those instructions that made no sense in human terms, and the walls fell by faith.

    We are given instructions, we obey those instructions, and we are saved by faith. Very same principle. Read again Gal 3:36-27, "For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ."

    Simple!!!
     
  5. Zenas

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    1. Jesus submitted to the baptism of John, not Christian baptism as He commanded in Matthew 28:19. Cf. Acts 19:1-7.

    2. There are many commentators (none Baptist) who point to Titus 3:5 as being a reference to baptism.
     
  6. JamesL

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    All scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version, published by the National Council of the Churches of Christ

    In Mark 16:16 Jesus said "The one who believes and is baptized shall be saved"
    Major confusion ensues when people make two grave errors:
    1) assume that "baptize" means to dip in water
    2) assume that "saved" means going to heaven

    Baptize simply means "immerse"
    Immerse in (into) what? CONTEXT will tell. And if there isn't enough context, then we should not be loading into the text whatever our imagination construes. And, baptism is not for people only....

    Mark 7:3-4
    For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, do not eat unless they thoroughly wash their hands, this observing the traditions of the elders; and the do not eat anything from the market unless they wash it (the Greek word is "Baptisontai", or BAPTIZE); and there are also many other traditions that they observe, the washing ("Baptismous", or BAPTISMS) of cups, pots and bronze kettles

    Hmmm. Food was baptized, as were pots and cups.

    Mark 10:35-40
    James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to him and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.” And he said to them, “What is it you want me to do for you?” And they said to him, “Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.” But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?” They replied, “We are able.” Then Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink; and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized; but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.”

    Jesus equated this baptism with a cup that He would drink. Sound familiar? Matt 26:38-39
    [He] said to them, “I am deeply grieved, even to death; remain here, and stay awake with me.” And going a little farther, he threw himself on the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet not what I want but what you want.”

    The "baptism" in Mark 10 is immersion in suffering, not water dunking

    Mark 1:8
    John the Baptist said, "I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

    Clearly not a water baptism, but a Spirit baptism

    So back to Mark 16:16
    Which "immersion" did Jesus have in mind? Is there anything in the immediate text that specifically tells us?

    And what about "saved" ??
    Does it always mean "go to heaven" ??

    Jesus said in Matt 10:22
    But the one who endures to the end will be saved

    2Timothy 2:12 says
    if we endure, we will also reign with him

    So are Jesus and Paul at odds? Or does "saved" have a broader meaning then "go to heaven" ??


    Paul also used "saved" in the sense of bodily resurrection
    Romans 5:10
    For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, much more surely, having been reconciled, will we be saved by his life.

    Reconciled by His death means "going to heaven"
    Saved by His life means "saved from physical death"

    Keep reading Romans 5, how in Adam all will die, and in Christ all will live
    Then reference this to 1Corinthians 15:21-23 which says the same thing, clearly in the CONTEXT of physical death and resurrection. It also says that Christ is the first fruits of resurrection. Meaning that He is the first one, and we will all be raised physically because He was raised physically - by His Life

    John 5:29 also tells us that believers and unbelievers alike will be raised. ALL men die in Adam, and ALL men will be "saved" from physical death because of Christ.

    So the one who believes and is baptized shall be saved
    But baptized in what? And saved in what sense?

    Is there a context which proves the Church of Christ position on this verse? No

    But those in the Church of Christ don't care about context. They only care about proving a false doctrine by redefining words as it suits them
     
  7. ktn4eg

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    In reference to the preposition "for" in Acts 2:38, in the Greek language this word is eis.

    Just as in our English language preposition "for," that Greek preposition eis has several different meanings.

    For a person to insist that the Greek proposition eis can ONLY BE DEFINED as "in order to obtain" makes no more logical sense than it would be for one to insist that our English language proposition can only be defined as "in order to obtain."

    EXAMPLE: The statement, "She took medicine FOR her cold," makes no logical sense to insist that the preposition "for" MUST be interpreted as "in order to get."

    There are other NT passages one needs to consider when trying to understand the relation of water baptism has in reference to one's salvation.

    In Acts 16:30 Paul and Silas responded to the Philippian jailor's inquiry ["Sirs, what must I do to be saved?"] by clearly stating in Acts 16:31-- ["Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved...."]. Why didn't Paul and Silas include in their response, "Believe AND BE BAPTIZED and thou shalt be saved"?

    In the Apostle Paul's classic statement of the way of salvation as he outlines in Romans 10:9-11, he nowhere indicates that baptism is essential to salvation.

    In Paul's first epistle to the Corinthians (I Cor. 1:17a) he clearly states that, "Christ sent me NOT TO BAPTIZE, but to preach the gospel;...." Paul thus makes a definite distinction between the Gospel of salvation and the purpose of the ordinance of baptism.

    Therefore, for one to conclude that baptism is vitally essential for a person's spiritual salvation clearly puts that person's soteriology in opposition to that of the Apostle Paul.

    (IMHO, I prefer to side with the Apostle Paul on this issue! :thumbs:)
     
  8. JamesL

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    I've heard this explanation given quite a few times. And while I cannot disagree with the possibility, I think there is a more plausible explanation of what Acts 2:38 means.

    Consider who Peter was speaking to - Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem (2:14)and You that are Israelites (2:22). The ones "living in Jerusalem" would have been Israelites, just not permanently living there. Deuteronomy 16:2, 5-6 says
    You shall offer the passover sacrifice to the Lord your God, from the flock and the herd, at the place that the Lord will choose as a dwelling for his name. You are not permitted to offer the passover sacrifice within any of your towns that the Lord your God is giving you. But at the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his name, only there shall you offer the passover sacrifice, in the evening at sunset, the time of day when you departed from Egypt.

    Mary and Joseph did this as well:
    Luke 2:41
    Now every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the festival of the Passover.


    Then, regarding the feast of Weeks, or Pentecost, Deuteronomy 16:11 says
    Rejoice before the Lord your God....at the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his name.

    Considering the long travel, many would stay the entire 7 weeks from Passover to Pentecost. This is why there were so many people there from other nations (Acts 2:8-11). These were not just Jews who wanted a vacation, these were devout Jews. What's so special about being called devout?

    Eulabes - inner reverence. Used only 4 times in the NT, it seems to always signify someone who is in righteous standing with God. In other words, saved people.

    In Luke 2:25-26, Simeon was described as "eulabes" and was waiting for the consolation of Israel. It was revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death until he had seen the Lord's Messiah.

    In Acts 8:2, "eulabes" men buried Stephen and made loud lamentation over him after he was stoned to death. Stephen's enemies sure would not have lamented. It would have been his brothers in Christ who were deeply saddened

    In Acts 22:12, Paul recounts how Ananias, a "eulabes" man, laid his hands on him to receive his sight after Paul (Saul) had become a believer.

    It is this same "eulabes" which is used to describe the men who were gathered from all the nations in Acts 2. Verse 5 says
    Now there were eulabes Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem.


    These men, who were waiting for the consolation of Israel, would have been justified by faith before Jesus was crucified. In other words, they were already "saved"

    They had been there to see Jesus ride into Jerusalem on a donkey. Matthew 21:8-9 says that a very large crowd spread their coats and went ahead of Him singing "Hosanna"

    If you read John 12, you see a great mix of people in this crowd. Some who believed in Him and some who did not. Verses 17 and 18 describe two groups of people - those who were with him when He raised Lazarus from the dead had gone about testifying. A different crowd heard about it and went to see Jesus. The English isn't real clear that there were two different crowds, but that is the case.

    Matthew 27:20 also testifies that there were multiple "crowds" that were stirred into asking for Barabbas to be released. These "devout" men from Acts 2 were part of the crowds that cried out "Crucify Him"

    That is why Peter said to them in Acts 2:26
    Therefore let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah, this Jesus whom you crucified.

    These men were most certainly pricked in their hearts, having taken part in the murder of their long-awaited Messiah. They knew better, but had allowed themselves to be deceived, and they went along with the crowd.

    When Peter told them to be baptized for the remission of sins, this was not justification. It was a cleansing of the conscience (2Peter 3:21) and a restoration into fellowship with God. It was also a public association with Jesus and His followers, which would have brought persecution.

    See in John 12:42 how some Pharisees believed in Jesus, but would not confess Him, for fear of being put out of the synagogue.

    Only when they had received forgiveness for this atrocity would these devout men receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

    It is always spoken of this event that "3,000 me were saved at Pentecost"

    But nowhere does it say that these men were saved. Why is that? They already were saved before they came that day. Justified by faith in God, just like Abraham was (Romans 4:21-25)

    What is actually said of these men, in Acts 2:41, is that
    those who welcomed his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand persons were added.

    Added to what? Added to the group of believing Jews who had recognized Jesus as their Messiah

    Acts chapter 2 gives no evidence whatsoever that anyone was "saved" because they got baptized. It confirms that 3,000 pre-cross believers came to realize that they were accessories to the murder of the Messiah. But by being baptized as a public confession of their faith in Him, they were restored to fellowship with God and received the promised Holy Spirit
     
    #8 JamesL, Jan 17, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 17, 2014
  9. Yeshua1

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    well, paul thanked God that he baptized none, and peter said that baptism does NOT in and by itself saves you, and Jesus was clear that ONLY faith in Him and His work on Cross was required to get saved, so would say there were right, she is wrong!
     
  10. Zenas

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    Thank you for your linguistic contortions using the word eis. However, I note that every English translation either says "for the forgiveness of your sins" or words to that effect.

    None of them say: "on account of the forgiveness of your sins."

    None of them say: "because your sins have been forgiven."

    Acts 2:38 is susceptible to only one interpretation and that is that you are baptized to forgive your sins. Unfortunately those who are blind to the truth must play games with prepositions in order to come up with another meaning.
     
  11. Yeshua1

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    the ONLY consist understanding for Acts 2:38 would be that we are water baptized into jesus, for He is the source, from which we have our sins remitted!

    Its Him, and faith alone in him, NOT act of water baptism!
     
  12. TrevorL

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    Greetings Salty,

    The scriptures reveal that the Apostles preached the gospel of Christ and as part of this taught and practiced baptism. There are many examples but the following may suffice:
    Acts 8:5,12 (KJV): 5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. 12 But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.
    Philip preached Christ unto them, they believed the gospel that he preached, summarised as “preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ” and then “they were baptised, both men and women”.

    Concerning Jesus submitting to the baptism of John, it was not to cleanse his own sins, but a pre-figurement of his own death and resurrection. All those who believe the gospel and are baptised follow his example, not only in water baptism, but in a way of life that is taught by both water baptism and the death and resurrection of Christ.
    Luke 9:22-24 (KJV): 22 Saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day. 23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. 24 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.
    Galatians 2:20 (KJV): I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.


    Kind regards
    Trevor
     
  13. Yeshua1

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    water baptism happened in NT church AFTER sinner had already been saved by the grace of Godm received thru faith in jesus, and the baptism inwater symbol of the new life now had in jesus, as laready had been sealed and baptized by the Spirit BEFORE being water baptized!
     
  14. TrevorL

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    Greetings Yeshua1,
    I appreciate your response, but I am not yet convinced that this was the sequence. Jesus was first baptised before the Spirit descended upon him in the form of a dove.
    Matthew 3:13-16 (KJV): 13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. 14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him. 16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:

    The same sequence appears to be indicated in the following two examples:
    Acts 2:38-39 (KJV): 38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
    Acts 8:5,12,14-17 (KJV): 5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. 12 But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 14 Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: 15 Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Spirit: 16 (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) 17 Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.


    Kind regards
    Trevor
     
  15. carpro

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    Except for the hard core fundamentalists, that may be changing.

    A personal story:

    My daughter married a man who is a Church of Christ member. Rather than have a standoff, she decided to attend her husband's church with his family, making it well known she was a Baptist.

    One older church member said she would have to be rebaptized to be accepted as a member of the church. She is not confused about the relationship between baptism and salvation, so she refused, saying one baptism was enough.

    Bottom line, she was accepted as a member of the church without being baptized into that particular church or denomination.

    Her husband's mother told her to just ignore "the old fool" who demanded she be rebaptized.

    So are things changing a little bit on the COC? Seems like some of the younger members have given up on their exclusive claim to salvation.
     
  16. The Biblicist

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    Take a look at the grammar in the Great Commission in regard to the main verb "make disciples" (Aorist tense) and the tenses of the three participles that modify this main verb (go - Aorist tense; baptizing - present tense; teaching - present tense."

    The Aorist tense "go" is an action described in the preaching of the Gospel (Mk. 16:15) and is regarded as a completed action prior to the present tense action of baptism.

    The Aorist tense participle "go" means that the action of having gone preaching the gospel is an action preceding and thus completed prior to the action of the main verb "make disicples." Whereas, the present tense participles show identical action with the action of the participle.

    This can be seen in the first application in Acts 2:41 where receiving the word is a completed action prior to baptising them and instructing them in the apostles doctrine.

    This can be seen in Romans 10:8 where it is "with the heart man believeth unto righteousness" followed by "with the mouth" profession is made which both are prerequisites to identify proper candidates for baptism.

    Consider this with 1 Cor. 1:17-18 where Paul confines salvation "power" to the gospel alone and not to baptism. If baptism were inseparable from the gospel in regard to the "power" of salvation He could not thank God he never baptized some but only preached the gospel as one without the other would be worthless according to the Church of Christ view.

    Finally, 1 Pet 3:21 explicitly states that baptism is a "figure" like the ark being lifted up by water whereby eight were saved by water lifting up the ark above the flood. Both equaly are types of "the resurrection of Jesus Christ" wherein lies the true power of salvation. Baptism as a "type" literally does wash away literal filth of the flesh but it does not remove the filth of sin from those "in the flesh". Baptism is "the answer" or response of a conscience ALREADY CLEANSED by the blood of Christ (Heb. 9:14) through faith. The "conscience' is an INTERNAL faculty that produces guilt. However, "with the heart man believeth unto righteousness" and thus in the act of INTERNAL faith in the promise of the gospel to cleans and save us from our sins the conscience is satisfied and the result is PEACE. Baptism is the response of a conscience already at PEACE with God and thus the visible figurative expression and public identification with the gospel embraced by faith which brought inner peace with God.
     
  17. Jkdbuck76

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    What about Cornelius? Look at the order.....
     
  18. Walter

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    The Early Church certainly understood Baptism as being tied to salvation. NOBODY wrote anything that remotely suggests that the Christians in the early centuries of the Christian Church believed in a purely symbolic view of baptism. The ECF's referred to scripture itself as reason for their belief in baptismal regeneration. Notice NOBODY is arguing about the soundness of 'baptismal regeneration' for hundreds of years. NOBODY.

    Titus 3:5: “He saved us, not because of deeds done by us in righteousness, but in virtue of his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal in the Holy Spirit,”

    John 3:5: “Jesus answered, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.’”

    The two passages are almost exactly parallel:



    Titus: "saved"
    John: "enter the kingdom of God"

    Titus: "washing of regeneration"
    John: "born of water"

    Titus: "renewal in the Holy Spirit"
    John: "born of . . . the Spirit"


    What is "washing" in one verse (with two other common elements) is "water" in the other. So baptism is tied to salvation, in accord with the other verses above.

    1 Corinthians 6:11 is also similar to Titus 3:5 and John 3:5: “And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.”
     
    #18 Walter, Feb 1, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 1, 2014
  19. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
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    You are right that the recorded history of apostasy begins with the perversion of salvation into sacramentalism. Satan always attacks the heart of the gospel.

    Titus 3:5 contrasts deeds done by us "in righteousness" to what God does on the basis of pure "mercy." Baptism is not even hinted here, as this is entirely a work of God as regeneration is a CREATIVE work (Eph. 2:10a) that preceeds "deeds of righteousness" done by us.


    Again, not one word about baptism. Again, the work of God which John has already made clear does not involve the will of man (Jn. 1:13) but is the product of the will of God which is a creative act of God WITHIN man.


    What you are failing to admit is that sin is an INTERNAL PROBLEM not an external problem that external washing can address. There is a defilement of the conscience which needs to be cleansed (Heb. 9:14) and this cleansing is performed by the "washing of the word" of the gospel wherein faith embraces the good news that sins have been paid in full by Christ being made sin for us (2 Cor. 5:21) and his righteousness imputed to us which removes the guilt of conscience and thus results with INNER PEACE WITH GOD.

    The cleansing of the Leper in Luke 5:12-17 illustrates this point extremely well. The position of sacramentalist was the position of the apostate Jews in the time of Christ. Jesus repudiated sacramentalism in this passage as did Paul in Romans 4:6-12.
     
  20. Zenas

    Zenas
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    I don’t think Walter said anything about apostasy. So when you said, “You are right that the recorded history of apostasy begins with the perversion of salvation into sacramentalism,” you were totally and deliberately misstating what he said. Also it’s quite odd that you reject John 3:5 and Titus 3:5 as having anything to do with baptism on the basis that they don’t mention baptism. Yet you embrace Luke 5:12-17 and Romans 4:6-12 as rejecting sacramentalism when they say nothing about sacraments.

    How can you read passages like James 5:13-15 and honestly say there is no such thing as a sacrament? Are you really that much of an infidel?

    And why do you reject the wisdom of two thousand years of church history in favor of an apostate approach, that denies the very plain teachings of the Bible, that Jesus never intended and the Bible certainly doesn’t teach? Do you really think Christ’s church was apostate for 1,500 years and only then did God see fit to “enlighten” a few men to the truth? That’s what Joseph Smith taught, and that line of thought completely ignores Jesus’ proclamation that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” Maybe you should change your name again, this time to “Joseph Smith”, or if you want to be more sophisticated you could call yourself “Moroni.”
     

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