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Bible verses about baptism

When we are put in the water and lifted out of the water it is a powerful symbol of being buried with Christ in death and rising with Him in newness of life. Baptism is not necessary for salvation, but it is important and shortly after a person is saved it is expected of him.

Baptism is an act of obedience. It is a public declaration of someone’s faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Only cults say baptism saves. If you say this, you are in danger of Hell. You are basically saying that the blood of Jesus Christ is not enough. If a person repented and put his faith in Jesus Christ and while on his way to go get baptized gets hit by a car and dies would he go to Hell?

Of course not, the amount of false teachings on baptism is ridiculous, but the devil loves it because it is sending many to Hell.



  • “A man who knows that he is saved by believing in Christ does not, when he is baptized, lift his baptism into a saving ordinance. In fact, he is the very best protester against that mistake, because he holds that he has no right to be baptized until he is saved.” – Charles Spurgeon
  • “Baptism is an outward expression of an inward faith.” – Watchman Nee
  • “Is it possible for an unbaptized believer to be saved? Yes, definitely. Should every believer be baptized? Yes, definitely.”  – Max Lucado


What do we know?

We are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, not works. If anyone says water baptism is necessary for salvation, then they are contradicting numerous passages in the Bible.

1. Romans 5:1-2 Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.

2. Ephesians 2:8-9 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God not by works, so that no one can boast.

3. Romans 3:24-26 Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past, for he was looking ahead and including them in what he would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for he himself is fair and just, and he declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus.

4. John 3:13-16 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man. Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

5. Titus 3:4-7 But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.

6. John 3:36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them.


How to make disciples?

Matthew 28 is not saying that baptism saves it’s talking about making disciples. Look at the second part. If baptism did indeed save you it would also mean that obeying all the commands saves you, but we know that is works. We can’t live the perfect life which God desires, that is why we must trust in Christ who became perfection for us. 

7. Matthew 28:18-20 Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”


If baptism was necessary for salvation why would Paul say this?

8. 1 Corinthians 1:14-16 I thank God that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, so no one can say that you were baptized in my name. Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don’t remember if I baptized anyone else.

9. 1 Corinthians 1:17-18 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with wisdom and eloquence, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.


There is a difference between being baptized with water and being baptized in the Spirit. 

Baptism of the Holy Spirit is when you put your trust in Christ alone for salvation. The moment you put your trust in Christ you become part of the body of Christ and you become a Christian. 1 Corinthians 12 teaches us that all believers have been baptized by the Spirit.

10. 1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.


This passage shows they were already saved and then they were baptized

11. Acts 2:40-42 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.


Baptism in these passages = Immersion – Immersion into Christ saves not washing your body in water.

12. 1 Peter 3:21 and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also–not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

13. Romans 6:3-6 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. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin.

14. Galatians 3:24-29 So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith. Now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian. So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.


Baptism is the picture of a believers death, burial, and resurrection with Christ.

15. Colossians 2:10-12 and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.  In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.


John’s baptism

16. Mark 1:3-8 “a voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him. And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River. John wore clothing made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. And this was his message: “After me comes the one more powerful than I, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

17. Acts 19:3-4 So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?” “John’s baptism,” they replied. Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.”


This passage does not mention baptism. This passage could be referring to natural birth, the Bible, or the Holy Ghost.

18. John 3:2-7 After dark one evening, he came to speak with Jesus. “Rabbi,” he said, “we all know that God has sent you to teach us. Your miraculous signs are evidence that God is with you.” Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.” “What do you mean?” exclaimed Nicodemus. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?” Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life. So don’t be surprised when I say, ‘You must be born again.’


Baptism is a way of confessing to the world the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. 

19. Matthew 10:32-33 Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.


The gospel saves. There is nothing about baptism in it. If it was a requirement for salvation of course 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 would have said it.

20. 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.


Notice that he was already saved by believing in Christ.

21. Acts 16:29-34 The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptized. The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole household.


The thief on the cross was not baptized.

22. Luke 23:38-43 These words were written in the Greek and Latin and Hebrew languages above His head: “THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.” One of the men who was guilty of death who was on a cross beside Jesus spoke bad words to Him. He said, “If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us.” But the other man on a cross spoke sharp words to the one who made fun of Jesus. He said, “Are you not afraid of God? You are also guilty and will be punished. We are suffering and we should, because of the wrong we have done. But this Man has done nothing wrong.” And he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your holy nation.” Jesus said to him, “For sure, I tell you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”


The gift of tongues is only given to believers and as you can see in this passage they were speaking in tongues and praising the Lord, then they got baptized.

23. Acts 10:43-48 All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.” While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on Gentiles. For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, “Surely no one can stand in the way of their being baptized with water. They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.” So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked Peter to stay with them for a few days.


After spiritual baptism then comes water baptism.

24. Acts 8:35-37 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning from this Scripture he preached Jesus to him. As they went along the road they came to some water; and the eunuch said, “Look! Water! What prevents me from being baptized?” And 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.” And he ordered the chariot to stop; and they both went down into the water, Philip as well as the eunuch, and he baptized him.


King Jesus is baptized.

25. Matthew 3:13-17 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to deter him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John consented. As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”


Bottom line

Once again baptism is important. If you are saved, and you haven’t been in the water yet go get it done, but I don’t want anyone thinking “I’m saved because I got baptized” or “I’m saved because I believe in Christ and got baptized.” No, a Christian says, “my only hope is in the perfect merit of Christ. I have nothing to add and I need nothing to add. I believe that Jesus Christ died, was buried, and was resurrected for my sins.”

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