1 Cor. 1:17
- Romans 10:9
- "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."
- Romans 10:13
- "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."
- These passages are used primarily by Evangelicals who teach that all that is needful for salvation is to "Accept the Lord Jesus and take him as your own personal Saviour". The assumption is made that baptism is an outward sign of an inward change, but is not essential for salvation.
- These verses in Romans are sound enough when understood in a Scriptural sense. Baptism is essential as the plain evidence of Matt. 3:15; Mark 16:16; John 3:5; Acts 2:38; 10:48; 22:16; 1 Pet. 3:21 shows.
- Is Paul going to suggest that baptism is not essential after writing so powerfully about it in the sixth chapter? (Rom. 6:3-5).
- Can one really be a believer and disallow the plainest and simplest (so far as ease of obedience goes) of Christ's commandments?
- A permissible rendering of Rom. 10:13 is "Whosoever shall call the name of the Lord upon himself shall be saved". See James 2:7 (R.V. margin) and Acts 22:16, where the same form of the Greek verb is used. How does one call the name of the Lord upon himself except by baptism?
- The same phrase, "Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved", is used in Acts 2:21 and here is certainly followed in baptism by those who "gladly" received Peter's words. (Acts 2:40,41).
- Sometimes in an endeavour to prove that doctrine is not essential Evangelicals quote Acts 8:37: "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God." The following points require stressing:
- These words are not in the Greek text. They are deleted by R.S.V., R.V., Rotherham's, The Emphasized Bible, N.E.B., and Nestle Greek Text.
- To "preach Christ" is a comprehensive expression. This is indicated by a comparison of Acts 8:5 and Acts 8:12. "Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them", but in verse 12 Philip is preaching "the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ . . ."
- Even to believe that Jesus is Lord requires an understanding of his nature and sacrifice. Similarly, to believe that God raised him from the dead requires an understanding of hell, soul, spirit, and quickening spirit.
- As false doctrines and perversions increased with the growth of the Truth in the first century this made necessary negative as well as positive teaching. (See for example: 1 Cor. 15:35,36; 1 Tim. 1:19,20: 2 Tim. 2:17,18; 1 Jn. 4:1-3; Titus 1:14).