MUST WE BE BAPTIZED TO BE SAVED?
by Daniel LeEarl Hall
Many religions claim that to be saved a person has to be baptized into their
group. Be assured that this is not the case. Otherwise, the man on the cross
next to Jesus did not make it into paradise.
Baptism in water is an outward expression of what has already taken place by the
Holy Spirit. The baptism which saves us is the baptism of the Holy Spirit, our
guarantee of eternal life. (Eph. 1: 13)
This subject illustrates precisely how cults and legalistic religions can take a
basic tenet of the Christian faith and completely pervert it. Note the
Watchtower Society's program for baptism: A person must:
1. Study in their literature for at least 6 months.
2. Attend all the meetings at the Kingdom Hall.
3. Go in the door-to-door ministry, regularly.
4. Totally clean up their lives, getting them in complete harmony with all the
rules, requirements, and standards of the Watchtower Society.
5. Be tested with 80 to 120 questions prior to baptism, ensuring that they have
been properly indoctrinated and that they fully accept the Watchtower Society as
God's only channel of truth and sole source of salvation.
6. Answer yes to two questions of loyalty to the organization.
7. Be baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the spirit directed
organization, which means they are baptized into the Watchtower Society and
formally made a member thereof.
In the Watchtower and Mormon Church a potential convert is required to
discontinue any bad habits, give up smoking, drinking, carousing, swearing,
possibly marry, and go door to door. In addition, the Mormons have to give up
coffee, soda, tea with caffeine, etc.
Paul said, "Do not be carried away with all kinds of strange teachings. It is
good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace, not by ceremonial foods which
are of no value to those who eat them. " (Heb. 13:9) It's grace, not teachings
about what we eat or drink!
When a person does this, what is being presented to God? Not the real person,
but a white-washed person, a phony, an actor, a hypocrite. Jesus called them,
"whitewashed graves." (Matt.23:27)
God doesn't accept phonies and you can't fool God. God only throws "Come as you
are" parties. God only accepts the real person, so we must come to Him as we
are. Only God can change us, so if God wants to change something in our lives,
He does it. Any changes we might make are very temporary, anyway. No other
approach to God will succeed, for God cannot be tricked or conned.
If you haven't done so already, present yourself to God, who will invite you to
His party and receive you and love you just as you are.-
We can see the self-serving arrangement of the Watchtower Society. Not only have
they completely indoctrinated the person and have control of their mind by
removing the person's belief system and replacing it with their belief system,
but they have the person as a member of their organization, baptized into the
organization, in the name of the organization, and completely under their
Mormonism's program is similar. They too, must clean up their lives, and then
they can get baptized into the church, not into Christ. The Mormons also baptize
for the dead, which is not condoned in the scriptures. According to Mormon
baptismal documents, they even baptized Adolph Hitler into the Mormon Church
after his death.
Exclusive and legalistic Christian religions and churches can become almost as
silly, practically claiming that unless one is baptized by their pastor, in
their tub, holding their King James Bible in their hand, they are not saved.
Notice the difference for real Christians:
1. Paul said we are baptized into Christ, into the body of Christ, not some
religion. (Rom. 6:3; Gal. 3:27)
2. We are baptized with the baptism of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 11 :16; 1Cor.
12:13; Eph. 1:13)
3. We are baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.
4. Christians were baptized in water immediately upon hearing the gospel of
Christ. (1Cor. 15:1-4) Please note:
a. Acts 8:36: The Ethiopian eunuch was baptized immediately.
b. Acts 10:48: Cornelius & his household were baptized immediately.
c. Acts16:31-33: Jailer & his household were baptized immediately.
d. d. Acts 18:8: "Many" were baptized immediately.
e. Acts 19:5: "Disciples" were baptized immediately.
Acts 9:35 and Acts 11: 22,24 say these ones "turned to the Lord," "were added to
the Lord." They simply came to Jesus, believed and were baptized. There was no
waiting period of indoctrination into some group; no test to see if they
received the indoctrination properly; and no requirement to clean up their lives
and get them in accord with a list of legalistic rules of conduct and
self-righteous requirements. God accepted them just as they were! What grace!
Christians are baptized into Christ. That baptism takes place by the Holy Spirit
and is what saves us! We can then get baptized in water as a public display and
testimony of our baptism into Christ. If there are any changes God wishes to
make in our lives, He brings them about after Christ comes to dwell in us,
because we cannot effect any permanent change. The Watchtower and Mormon
doctrines of baptism and their self-serving requirements for baptism are not the
Christian baptism established by Jesus and the apostles.