Saved Before Baptism?

by Timothy A. Southall 

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Have you ever been told that you can be saved before you are baptized and that baptism is not necessary? God's Word teaches us that baptism is a very important part of God's Plan of Salvation for each and everyone of us. Can one be saved before baptism? Let's look at some "what ifs."

If a person is saved before he/she is baptized, then he/she is . . .

  • Saved before Jesus said he/she would be saved. 
    • Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. Mark 16:16 (NIV)
  • Saved before his/her sins were forgiven. 
    • Peter replied, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit." Acts 2:38 (NIV)
  • Saved before his/her sins were washed away. 
    • 'And now what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name.' Acts 22:16 (NIV)
  • Saved before receiving a new life with Christ.
    • Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. Romans 6:3-4 (NIV)
  • Saved before he/she entered into Christ.
    • For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body-whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free-and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 1 Corinthians 12:13 (NIV)

      for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. Galatians 3:27 (NIV)

  • Saved before being buried and raised with him.
    • having been buried with him in baptism and raised with him through your faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead. Colossians 2:12 (NIV)
  • Saved before the Bible says he/she was saved. 
    • and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also-not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 1 Peter 3:21 (NIV)
Baptism is clearly shown to be biblical, a command of Jesus, and part of God's plan of salvation. No matter what someone might tell you, God's Word teaches that we cannot be saved before baptism. Baptism is an act of faith (Colossians 2:11-12), not a work like some say! Christ commanded that we be baptized (Matthew 28:18-20). Have you taken the act of faith yet?

Copyright © 2003 Timothy A. Southall. All rights reserved.