MANIFOLD wisdom of God pt 1
All MUST obey the Gospel.
The first and foremost truth that will answer many objections is the fact that everyone MUST obey the gospel to be saved.
This is easily shown by looking at the New Testament Scriptures.
2Thess 1:8 …rendering vengeance to them that know not God, and to them that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus:
Heb 5:9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;
see also; Rom 1:5; 10:16; 16:26; [emph mine seb]
Denominational people will come to you saying…
- “Baptism is not essential to salvation.”
- “No works of man can save you.”
- “Ask Jesus into your heart and you’ll be saved.”
- “What about the thief on the cross?”
- “By grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.”
They will especially appeal to emotionalism…
- “Do you mean to tell me my mother, that godly woman, who was a (insert denomination here) all her life is lost?”
- “What if you’re on the way to be baptized and you die?”
They may even quote a few scriptures out of context…
- Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
- Rom 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.
- Acts 16:31 And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.
- John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
I believe all these passages, and I hope you do as well. However, I believe them in their context as well as in context with everything else Jesus said about salvation including baptism.
WHAT SAVES US?
Let’s answer one of the main objections to baptism. It is stated this way; “No work of man or from God can save you. If you get baptized, you’re working for & trying to earn your salvation.”
When you’re accused of salvation by ‘WORKS’ reply, “Yes, but it’s not me doing the work. Let’s look at Col 2:11-14.”
“Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.”
“…the working of God,” [ASV]
First, It’s God who is WORKING when we are baptized. It is God’s work, [Isa 29:14; Hab 1:5; Acts 13:41]
“…raised with him through faith…”
Obedience to God’s command is never considered earning anything. He’s working through OUR faith, our trust in His working. Our obedience is part of faith. James wrote, “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.” [Jas 2:17]
“wherein also ye are risen with Him…”
When we are baptized, we are being buried as dead sinners, then God’s working allows us to be RAISED with Christ being made alive, being forgiven of all our trespasses. [v13; Rom 6:3-4]
“…he make alive together with him;” [v13]
This scripture lets us KNOW what we’re doing in baptism, understanding that it is God working through our faith. It is not a blind faith, nor just a feeling. We may KNOW that we have eternal life. [2Tim 1:12; 1Jo 5:13]
“…having forgiven us all our trespasses;” [v13]
Lastly, because it’s God WORKING through OUR faith and that we are being RAISED with Christ, KNOWING we’ve obeyed the commands of God, we can be certain that we’ve worked out our SALVATION with fear and trembling. [Php 2:12; Acts 2:40] “Save yourselves from this untoward generation.”