Thursday, May 18, 2006

Baptism and Salvation

Bill Keller wrote a devotional today that I
recommend to you for your consideration. It has food for
thought. He has given me permission to copy his e-mails,
and I'm sure he would be happy if
you would share this
with people you know as well.

Have you ever wondered about the role of baptism on
salvation? This subject is well covered in the Bible
but many haven't yet read the Bible. Do you know the
difference between dedicating a baby to God and baptizing
a baby?

Please read on.


( Psalms 127:3, 1 Samuel 1:11, 26-28, Deuteronomy 6:4-7 )

Is it proper to baptize your baby? This is a question
that I get every day so today I want to address this issue
of infant baptism, and deal with baptism in general since
there is some erroneous teaching on this wonderful
experience every follower of Christ should enjoy in their
life. Like many people, I was "baptized" as a baby in the
church I grew up in. Even though I was saved in 1970,
rededicated my life to the Lord in 1990, it wasn't until
Good Friday 1994 that I was actually baptized.

A dear man, Dave Scott, who became my spiritual father in
1992 and went home to be with the Lord last year, donned
a wet suit on that chilly Chicago morning in 1994. I was
in just a pair of shorts as we waded out into the
freezing waters of Lake Michigan off of Oak Street Beach.
After we prayed, I went under the icy water and moments
later came up, symbolizing the washing away of my sins
and identifying my life with the life of Jesus. It was a
special moment for me and one that I will never forget as
long as I live.

So let's get back to the initial question, is it proper
to baptize your baby? The answer is NO! There is NOTHING
Biblical about baptizing a baby. Baptism is the act of
someone who has accepted Christ by faith, identifying
their life with the life of Christ in this symbolic act.
It is the act of a person who has made the choice to
accept Christ into their heart and life by faith, and is
symbolic of going into the water a sinner, and coming
out of the water washed clean by the blood of Jesus.
Subsequently, since a baby is not yet at a place in
their life to make the choice to accept or reject Christ,
baptizing a baby is a meaningless act.

Please understand this important fact. BAPTISM DOES NOT
SAVE YOU! You can't save your baby by having your baby
baptized. Each person matures at a different pace, but
at some point, every person with a sound mind reaches
the place in their life where they are accountable for
their decision to accept or reject Christ. A baby is
clearly not able to mentally comprehend they are a sinner
and make the conscious choice to accept or reject Christ
in their life. The fact is God will hold each person
accountable for the light they have had in their life,
so if a baby dies they are without question forever with
the Lord for all eternity.

What IS PROPER, is to dedicate your baby to the Lord.
That is Biblical. We have the great example in 1 Samuel
of Hannah dedicating her baby Samuel to the Lord. Every
parent should have a time of dedication as they present
their baby to God and dedicate that child's life to the
Lord's service. As I have spoken often recently about
parenting and a parent's greatest ministry being to their
children, this is part of that responsibility as you
offer up your child to God and ask for God's blessings on
your child's life.

Let me quickly address the erroneous teachings of a few
churches on the issue of baptism. The Church of Christ
denomination and some other churches hold to the false
teaching that you have to be baptized in order to be
saved. This is NOT true and it is NOT Scriptural.
Ephesians 2:8 and 9 clearly tell us that we are saved by
1) faith in Jesus Christ, and 2) God's grace. PERIOD!
Nothing else. No amount of good works can save you, no
additional acts are required. Salvation is a
supernatural spiritual experience that transforms the
eternal soul of a person from being separated from God
their Creator due to their sin, to being forever
connected with God their Creator because their sins have
been forgiven by their faith in Christ. Baptism is a

*Please do me a favor. I am NOT going to engage anyone
in an email debate over this issue. If you are part of
the Church of Christ denomination or another church that
teaches the unbiblical doctrine of Baptismal Regeneration,
you are free to believe whatever you want. I am well
aware of the arguments those who hold to this erroneous
teaching make to try and support their position. But a
careful and complete study of the WHOLE counsel of God
clearly teaches that baptism is NOT part of the salvation
process, but simply an act of obedience AFTER a person is

So why should a person even bother getting baptized if it
isn't necessary for their salvation? Someone who has
committed their heart and life to Christ by faith will
have a deep desire to follow the life of Jesus, to
identify with His life. Baptism is a public act of
identification with Christ. It is the symbolic act of the
washing away of our sins. It is a way for a follower of
Christ to proclaim their allegiance to Him through a
physical act. I have had the honor to baptize hundreds of
people over these past 16 years, and I would encourage
anyone who has committed their heart and life to Jesus
Christ by faith to have this special experience. It is
one you will cherish the rest of the days of your life.

I love you and care about you so much. I know many parents
are confused about whether to have their babies baptized
and I pray this word today will help you understand that
it makes no sense to baptize your baby, but is God's
desire for you to dedicate your child to the Lord. I also
want to encourage anyone who has accepted the Lord into
your heart and life by faith and has never been baptized
to do so. Not so that you are saved, you are already
saved. But to enjoy that wonderful experience of
identifying your life with the life of Jesus. It is a
special experience in the life of every Believer.

I will be praying for you today. Praying that as you go
through your day-to-day life you will never forget that
you are a child of God, a blood-bought son or daughter of
the Lord Jesus Christ. A wonderful way to never forget
that great truth is by being baptized. Every time you
remember that special moment when you went under the water
and came up, you will be reminded that your sins have been
forgiven, that once you were lost and now you are found,
that because of your faith in Jesus Christ you have the
assurance of everlasting life as well as the peace, joy,
and abundance of this life. Baptism is a great reminder
of your faith!

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,
Bill Keller

***If I can help you in any way you can contact me
through my personal email at

ETERNITY? The fact is you will die one day. At
that moment, you will either spend eternity with
the Lord or be cast into everlasting darkness
forever separated from God your creator. To know
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(C) Copyright 2006, Bill Keller Ministries.
All rights reserved


May God bless you as you learn from this message!

Donald W. Mitchell, Your Dream Concierge

Copyright 2006 Donald W. Mitchell


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