Faith and Works#3. “Baptism is not a work of man.”

Faith and Works#3. “Baptism is not a work of man.”

The greatest day of my life was the day that Peter Craig baptised me into Christ. I knew it then, and I am now more convinced than ever that it is so. That one decision put my life on an eternal trajectory that has brought me ever-present blessings in the Lord’s church, and the future hope of heaven.

Baptism is no work of man.

Jesus told Nicodemus that baptism was the point and means of his spiritual rebirth; “by water and the Spirit? (John 3:5).

If baptism is going to be called an ‘act,’ then we must correctly call it an ‘act of submission.’ It is something done to you both physically and spiritually. Those 3000 souls on the Day of Pentecost did not add themselves to the church (Acts 2:41). Instead, when convicted as sinners and crying out, “What must we do?” they submitted to Jesus’ command (Mark 16:16), through the apostle Peter, to “Repent, and each of you be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:37-38).

I need to stop here and deal with ‘The Elephant in the Room.” You see, all I have said so far, though Biblical, is brushed aside by those who follow Calvinist teachings (Baptists etc) because it is inconsistent with their beliefs. In simple terms, they believe that a person is saved at the moment of ‘Faith.’ But don’t miss this: That moment, so they teach, is when a sinner receives God’s saving ‘grace’ as a gift that is beyond his choosing. He, of course, wants it, but since salvation is a work of God that he could not resist, any action on his part, especially baptism, is counted as a meritorious work. Baptism is instead viewed as something done to show that one is saved—not something done ‘to be saved!’

This contradicts Jesus’ plan of salvation in so many ways.

I have often said, “If Paul was saved at his ‘Damascus Road Experience’ as Calvinists claim, then the preaching of Ananias, and his command to Paul to ‘Get up and be baptised, and wash away your sins’ (Acts 22:16), makes no sense.”

Baptism is not a work of man—it is a work of God. Hallelujah!

John Staiger


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