Can we be saved by faith without baptism? Is baptism an act of faith? “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” (Gal 3:26–27). Is faith a work of God that we do? “Then they said to Him, ‘What must we do, that we may work the works of God?’ Jesus answered and said to them, ‘This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent’” (John 6:28–29). Is baptism a work of God? The baptism in Jesus’ name – “where was it from? From heaven or from men?” (cf. Matt 21:25). Did baptism come from Christ? Jesus said, “Therefore while going, make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,” (Matt 28:19).
Is the baptism that Jesus established the “one baptism” mentioned in scripture or is there another (Eph 4:5)? Is being baptized in Jesus’ name in water? “‘Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?’ And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord” (Acts 10:47–48). Were other baptisms just as good (Acts 19:1–5)?
Did this baptism have anything to do with forgiveness of sins? “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38). Did this baptism have anything to do with salvation? Jesus said, “One who believes and is baptized will be saved” (Mark 16:16; cf. 1 Pet 3:21). Did baptism in Jesus’ name include the washing away of sin? “And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord” (Acts 22:16). Did anyone in the New Testament wait to be baptized (Acts 2:38–41; 8:35–38; 9:18; 10:43–48; 16:30–34; 19:5)? Why not wait if baptism is not necessary for salvation?
Was this baptism not also “in the name…of the Holy Spirit” (Matt 28:19)? Did this baptism have anything to do with the sanctification of the Holy Spirit? “But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor 6:11). Would this baptism include “the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit” (Titus 3:5)? Is “the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit” different from being “born of water and the Spirit” (John 3:5)? Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I say unto you, Except one be born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God!” (John 3:5). When lacking the Holy Spirit, how were people baptized (Acts 19:1–5)? “When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus” (Acts 19:5). Is this the baptism described in 1 Corinthians 12:13, “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body”? Were all Christians baptized in Jesus’ name or in another baptism (1 Cor 1:13–16)? Does Christ also wash us with water in baptism? “[T]hat He [Christ] might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word” (Eph 5:26).
How did Jesus say to “make disciples” (Matt 28:19)? Were those baptized in Acts saved and added to the Church? “Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added… praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved” (Acts 2:41, 47). “And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the LORD Shall be saved” (Act 2:21; cf. Rom 10:13). Does baptism in Jesus’ name included calling on the name of the Lord (Acts 22:16)?
Are we not saved by the gospel (Rom 1:16)? Does faith include believing the gospel, which is the death, the burial, and the resurrection of Jesus Christ (1 Cor 15:1–4)? Is baptism not from faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus (Rom 6:3–7)? “Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life” (Rom 6:3–4). Was this baptism an immersion burial or a sprinkling burial? Does preaching Jesus include baptism (Acts 8:35–38)? When the Apostles taught the gospel (1 Cor 1:17), did it include baptism (Acts 18:8; 1 Cor 1:14–16)?
From the beginning, what was required of baptism (Mark 16:16; Gal 3:26–27)? Are we to be immersed before or after belief (Mark 16:16)? When we have faith, should “our bodies [be] washed with pure water” (Heb 10:22)? Is baptism earning salvation when the one being baptized does not do the work of baptizing oneself (Acts 8:35-38)? Do those who believe in baptism in Jesus’ name think that being immersed in Jesus’ name earns salvation or that Jesus saves them through baptism (Eph 5:26; Tit 3:5)?
“Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him. Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, ‘See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?’ Then Philip said, ‘If you believe with all your heart, you may.’ And he answered and said, ‘I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.’ So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him” (Acts 8:35–38 NKJV).