A Defense of Baptismal Regeneration

I have planned to put together a piece that puts out the Biblical support for baptismal regeneration. The Bible is clear on the teaching of the saving power of baptism. This is what I hope to set forth in this essay. In presenting a Catholic defense of baptism, I intend to not only show this Biblical support for baptismal regeneration but to take on an attack on this agelong Biblical and Catholic teaching. Those Protestant groups who reject baptismal regeneration attempt to downplay the scriptural support for this. I recently ran into a web site one of whose missions is to ‘expose’ the ‘errors’ of Catholicism, and to lead people away from Catholicism, and into what they proclaim as ‘Biblical Christianity.’ Since the arguments that are used in the site are common for those who argue against baptismal regeneration, I thought it would be helpful to not only put out the support for this Biblical teaching, but to also deal with opposing arguments as well.

Across the web there are numerous attacks on Catholicism that purport to attack Catholicism from a ‘Biblical’ perspective. In all cases I have noticed numerous errors in their analysis of history, scripture and Catholicism. In order to correct all of their errors in these anti-Catholic sites, the amount of time used would be infinite. No one has that time. Often, someone will make a wild statement that is passed on as truth. However, I will just focus on one of these sites as an example of their errors on Catholicism and the bible. Press here to see this piece This site is in reference to the Catholic Catechism and how it supposedly differs from the bible. A former nun ‘Sister Sandy’ and Tracy Broadhurst write this piece supposedly ‘disproving’ the Catholic position of baptismal regeneration. Later on we will see that while trying to refute baptismal regeneration, they actually unwittingly quote verses which not only affirm the Catholic teaching on baptism, but confirm the salvific efficacy of the sacrament of the Eucharist. The reason that I will reference this site is because this site is representative of the Biblical attacks on Catholicism. True examination of the Bible will show Catholic teachings to be biblically founded. I will put in quotes those parts of their site that are quoted.

They start off by quoting on one side the Catechism which shows the Roman Catholic view of the necessity of Baptism. One thing I noticed very quickly is that they neglect to show the numerous scriptural verses that are quoted in the Catechism that show that this view is indeed found in the bible. On the other side they quote Bible verses which supposedly show that Baptism is not salvific.

Using the King James Bible (the only true Bible according to that site, which I believe is ridiculous as the Bible is abridged and cuts out 7 books, but that is another issue), what does scripture actually say about baptism and salvation?

They quote from the Catechism “Baptism not only purifies from all sins, but also makes the neophyte 'a new creature,' an adopted son of God, who has become a 'partaker of the divine nature,' member of Christ and co-heir with him, and a temple of the Holy Spirit." (Pg.354, #1265)”. Why did they forget that the Bible teaches this? See Mark 1:6, Acts 2:38-39, Gal. 3:27, Acts 22:16, 1 Cor. 6:11. Perhaps because it proves Catholicism true.

They quote the Catechism again :"Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, and are incorporated into the Church..." (Pg. 342, #1213).” Then on the other side they quotes verses that supposedly disprove this. I ask why they did not quote Gal. 3:26-27, which says through faith AND baptism one becomes a son of God. Perhaps because it proves the Catechism true.

They quote the Catechism again: "By Baptism all sins are forgiven, original sin and all personal sins, as well as all punishment for sin." (Pg. 353, #1263. see also pg. 279, #985). Then they quote verses along the other side that supposedly disprove this. I ask why they did not quote Col. 2:12-13, Acts. 2:38-39, John 3:5, Titus 3:5, Rom 6:1-11, etc? Perhaps because it proves the Catechism true.

Here is a clear scripture that proves baptismal regeneration: John 3:3-5: 3 "Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? 5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of WATER AND OF THE SPIRIT, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God."

What does the context of John show us? One must be born again, as stated in John 3:3; however, what does that phrase mean? Nowhere does the Bible say what I was taught that in order to be born again, you must accept Jesus as Lord and Savior. Jesus explained in John 3:5 what he meant in John 3:3. You must be born of water and spirit, that is baptism. How do we know that is what he meant? First, Jesus was talking to Nicodemus, who knew the Old Testament background to the meaning of water and spirit. In talking about the New covenant, Ezekiel in 36:23-29, writes about clean water being sprinkled, and God cleansing his people from all filthiness, in tandem with his Spirit being poured out, giving people a new heart, giving people the ability to walk in his statutes. Isaiah 44:3 also talks about the Holy Spirit being poured out with water and many blessings to follow. In John 1:29-34, Jesus is baptized, and the Holy Spirit comes upon Jesus. John promises that Jesus will baptize with the Holy Spirit. What does Jesus do after he tells Nicodemus in 3:5 about being born of water and spirit? He goes out baptizing in John 3:22. This is the only time that Jesus and the disciples baptize in the gospels, emphasizing even more that being born of water and spirit means baptism (besides John 4, immediately following this). What does John do? He baptizes other people. In the context of baptism, John uses the same term "anothen" in 3:31, as was used in John 3:3 and 3:5. It can interchangeably be translated as "born again" or "begotten from above." It would strain credulity to say that all this is a coincidence. All Christians until the 16th century thought that born again meant baptism. On the other hand nothing here or anywhere else in the Bible does being born again mean accepting Jesus as Lord in your heart.

Other passages proving baptismal regeneration include: 1 Peter 3:20-21. 20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. 21 The like figure whereunto even baptism DOTH ALSO NOW SAVE US (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Acts 22:16 And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be BAPTIZED, AND WASH AWAY THY SINS, calling on the name of the Lord.

Acts 2:38-39 38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and BE BAPTIZED EVERY ONE OF YOU IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, AND TO YOUR CHILDREN, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.

Mark 16:16 He that BELIEVETH AND IS BAPTIZED shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

1 Cor. 12:12-13. 12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. 13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

Colossians 2:11-13 - 11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in PUTTING OFF THE BODY OF THE SINS of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: 12 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. 13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;

Romans 6:3-4. 3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

Galatians 3:26-27. 26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as have BEEN BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST HAVE PUT ON CHRIST.

Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by THE WASHING OF REGENERATION, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

There are other references to the necessity and saving power of baptism, but if you take God's Word seriously, and look at the above verses, you must admit that Baptism has salvific power. Quoting other verses do not cancel out these verses. Nowhere in these scriptures are Spirit baptism separated from water baptism. They are one and the same thing. Even if there was only one scripture (like Baptism saves (1 Peter 3:21) that shows baptism is salvific) it would be enough to settle the issue, but we have proved the point with much scripture. Not only that, but there are numerous other scriptures not even alluded to that likewise proves the saving power of baptism. Trying to explain away verses that are so blatantly Catholic is something that all Protestants must do in order to avoid Catholic truth, but it is dishonest to say one loves the bible, and then ignores what it so plainly teaches. So, unless one blinds him/herself to the plain meaning of scripture, one can only conclude that baptism saves, as the Catholic Church teaches, exactly as scripture and the Catechism states.


They quote the Church belief that baptism cleanses from original sins, and washes sins away. They again ignore the scriptural foundation for this belief and quote other scriptures that supposedly prove that baptism does not cleanse from sin. Just a few to show that Baptism does wash away sins:

Acts 22:16 And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be BAPTIZED, AND WASH AWAY THY SINS, calling on the name of the Lord.

Romans 6:3-4. 3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

Other references Gal. 3:27, Col. 2:11-13, 1 Cor 6:11, see above for quotation.

In prophesying about the New Covenant, Ezekiel reveals how God is going to cleanse one from sin. Does he write, well, one needs to say a salvation prayer, as long as you really mean it, and make an emotional decision to follow Christ? (Salvation prayers, altar calls, etc. are more manmade, Protestant traditions) nowhere found in the bible. On the contrary, Ezekiel concludes 36:25-27: 25 “Then will I sprinkle CLEAN WATER upon you, and ye shall be CLEAN: FROM ALL YOUR FILTHINESS, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. 26 A new heart also will I give you, and a NEW SPIRIT will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. 27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.”

We see again that in the New Covenant that one will be cleansed exactly by water (it also mentions sprinkling) and Spirit. They are not separated.

They quote: “Whom [Jesus] God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past... Romans 3:25.” So here they say that what provides the remission of sin is Christ’s blood, and since it does this, Christ’s blood is salvific. So what remits sins is the means of salvation. Of course the Catholic church could not agree with them more. So let us see if they are consistent in interpreting the remission of sins as the cause of salvation:

Acts 2:38-39. Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and BE BAPTIZED EVERY ONE OF YOU IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, AND TO YOUR CHILDREN, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call. For more info on why it is Biblical to baptize babies click here

OK, they said that Christ’s blood is salvific because it causes the remission of sins. What does baptism do here? The remission of sins!!!! So I take it then, that they now agree that they were wrong in saying that baptism is not the means of salvation. In order to be consistent, they must admit that baptism is the means of salvation.

We next see that when they mentioned all the verses that show that Christ’s blood is the means of salvation, they thus dig themselves deeper into problems in their attack on Catholic theology by inadvertently proving another Catholic doctrine.


They quote several verses that show the efficacy of the blood, and how it brings the forgiveness of sins (Eph. 1:7, Col. 1:14, 1 John 1:7) (as the Bible showed that baptism does as well). I wonder if the Bible says that you get the efficacy of Christ’s blood when you say a ‘salvation prayer’ and accept Jesus into your heart as Lord and Savior.’ Nowhere is that stated in the Bible that they supposedly follow. But yet again, they do a very selective quotation of the New Testament scriptures. I wonder why? Let us look at elsewhere in the New Testament as it relates to blood, and forgiveness of sins.

Matthew 26:28: For this is my BLOOD of the New Testament, which is shed for many for THE REMISSION OF SINS.

So in the context of instituting the Eucharist, Jesus says that this blood is for the remission of sins. Remember they had written that the remission of sins means salvation. Well, according to Jesus, what effects the remission of sins? His blood in the eucharist!!! I wonder why they did not mention that!!! By the way, no mention of the eucharist as a symbol, (just like no mention of baptism being a symbol).

Mark 14:24 : And he said unto them, This is my BLOOD of the new testament, which is shed for many.

Luke 22:20 : Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my BLOOD, which is shed for you.

So how do we partake of this blood? Do we partake it by saying a salvation prayer, as long as you really mean it? No? Salvation prayers are nowhere found in the Bible and is another tradition of men. That is a tradition of men begun in the 19th century with no hint of it in the bible. Partaking of this blood is partaking in the eucharist (Mk 14:24, Luke 22:19-20, Mt. 26:27) which he commanded the apostles to do.

John 6:53: Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his BLOOD, ye have no life in you. 6:54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my BLOOD, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. 6:55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my BLOOD is drink indeed. 6:56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my BLOOD, dwelleth in me, and I in him.

I wonder why this was left out of their description of blood. Jesus says whoever drinks his blood has eternal life. Whoever does not, does not have eternal life. Jesus reiterates the literalness of his flesh and blood despite the disbelief of not only the Jews who rejected him (v. 52) but also the disciples who left him (v. 67). Not once did Jesus say, oh, don’t go away, I was only talking symbolically. BTW, if they try to quote v. 63 which talks of spirit and life, not one time in the Bible does spirit ever mean “what I was talking about was only symbolic.” God is Spirit (John 4:24). Does that mean God is symbolic? Of course not, God is real, just as the eucharist that Christ promised. I choose to stay with following Jesus as Peter did, not as the disciples and disbelieving Jews did. His flesh is true food, his blood is true drink!!! Nowhere does Jesus say, oh well folks, I did not really mean I will give true flesh and true blood.

Only now does Jesus add that we must also drink his blood. Six times in this paragraph Jesus reasserts the necessity to "eat my flesh and drink my blood", six times! Do you think he was trying to tell us something? Non-Catholics are fond of quoting John 3:3 "Except you be born again.." Why is it that 'except' is so important, and this 'except' isn't. You can't have it both ways, we must be consistent when interpreting Gods' word.

1 Corinthians 10:16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the BLOOD of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?

Paul says that the cup is communion of the blood of Christ. I wonder why this was left out of their analysis of blood and salvation.

1 Corinthians 11:25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my BLOOD: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me... 27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. 28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. 29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.

The new covenant is in his blood, the eucharist yet again. Does Paul see it as symbolic? Whoever unworthily eats this is guilty of the body and blood of Jesus!!!! How could something symbolic, be guilty of the body and blood of Jesus? And even further, we see that if one partakes of this blood unworthily, one drinks DAMNATION to himself, because they don’t discern the Lord’s body!! This makes absolutely no sense for the Protestant. However, this fits in perfectly with the Catholic view. The eucharist is the body and blood of Christ, as so clearly written by Paul. It is a holy sacrament to be treasured, not blasphemed.

Hebrews 10:29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?"

We have seen what the blood of the covenant (it is the same Greek word, and in King James English covenant has the same meaning as testament) is. It is the eucharist. And their site loves to mock it. In fact, they called it a hated thing. Unless they repent, their punishment is stated very succintly in the above sentence. I pray that they do not mock what Jesus gave to his church.


They quote Eph. 1:13 saying that the Holy Spirit is the seal, not baptism. Again they make an artificial distinction between the two. Every single person who studied the Bible for 1500 years did not see the seal as being a contest between baptism against the Holy Spirit. Every single one saw the seal being the Holy Spirit given through water baptism. Remember, Jesus said Except you be born of WATER AND SPIRIT. When Jesus was baptized, he was baptized in the water AND Spirit (John 1:34). Baptism washes away sins (Acts 22:16). Baptism is how we are sealed by the Spirit (also, compare Romans 4:13 where circumcision is called the seal of faith, with Col. 2:11-13, where baptism is called the new circumcision, thus confirming again that baptism is the seal of the Holy Spirit).

They then quote that Paul did not come to baptize, but to preach (1 Cor. 1:12, 17). The fact that Paul did not baptize everybody refutes what the Bible said earlier about baptismal regeneration? I think not. Yes, Paul did not baptize, but he let other people do the baptisms. Just as Jesus let others baptize (John 4:2) immediately after declaring the necessity of baptism (John 3:5). Paul did not write that baptisms are only valid through him, so the quotations of 1 Cor. 1:17, and 1 Cor. 1:12 are irrelevant. Paul did not write, 'oh, this cancels out what I taught earlier' in Gal. 3:26-27, Acts 22:16, 1 Cor. 6:11, Romans 6:1-4, etc. If he taught baptism was not salvific, as they say, he would contradict himself.

They again quote selective scriptures (they do tend to be quite selective) that show that belief only is the means of salvation. Well, I could quote Acts 22:16 which shows that Paul had his sins washed away not when he believed but when he was baptized. I could quote Matthew 19:16-17 in which Jesus is asked what one must do to enter eternal life. He in fact doesn’t even say you must believe. He says that in order to enter life, one must KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS. So using their logic, since these verses do not mention belief, can I say that belief is not necessary for salvation? Why also would they leave out Matt. 25:31-46, Rom. 2:4-13 and James 2:14-26 which specifically disprove the faith alone idea of salvation? The Catholic church puts all the verses together, and says, that belief, keeping the commandments (that can only be done by God’s grace) baptism, and the Eucharist (as already proven) are the means of salvation. Why quote verses that stress belief but exclude other verses when the very subject of salvation is the issue? What Christ did on the cross must be applied to our lives in a real way.

They write “•Water baptism symbolizes the believers death, burial and resurrection with Christ (Rom 6:12, Col. 2:12), symbolizes washing away of sins (Acts 22:16), and the answer of a good conscience towards God (I Peter 3:21).”

This article could not find one verse that says baptism symbolizes washing away sins. It is unbelievable that they quote those verses because they exactly prove the Catholic Church right again on baptism!!! He said arise, be baptized and wash away sins (Acts 22:16). Not a thing about symbol. In fact, Paul had already believed yet his sins were only washed away by baptism in Acts 22:16. Paul was not told, arise, get baptized to symbolically wash away their sins. He said, arise, be baptized, and wash away your sins. Col. 2 says that the new circumcision, baptism does not symbolically put off the body of sins, but actually does, Col. 2:12-13. A reminder in regards to 1 Peter 3:21, is that baptism does not symbolically save, it says ‘baptism doth now save you’..

Unbelievably they quote Acts 8:36-37 in support supposedly of faith alone, with no need of baptism. The Ethiopian Eunuch incident they say proves that “•Water baptism comes AFTER one believes on Jesus Christ. Water baptism always follows salvation:”

Let us see the context of which they write:

Acts 8:30-39: 30 “And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest? 31 And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him. 32 The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: 33 In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth. 34 And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man? 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus. 36 And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? 37 And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. 38 And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him. 39 And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.

Actually, their citation of this scene shows two things that disprove their theological view. First, it shows that a person who reads scripture on his own needs an interpreter to explain the meaning. No sola scriptura here. Phillip had been appointed earlier by the apostles Acts 6:5-7. The appointed apostle thus had the authority to teach authoritatively. Thus when the Eunuch came to him, he did not say, ‘well, ask the Holy Spirit and he will guide you into it.’ Phillip had the authority to guide the Eunuch into the truth. He explained the doctrines that had to be believed in order to be saved. By the way, it does not say he became saved only when he believed. Second, notice what it does say. The Eunuch, after hearing this teaching on salvation said take me to the water. It is apparent to anybody reading this story that baptism is absolutely essentially to the process of salvation. First, for adult believers, one must believe (and Catholics also believe that adults must believe before getting baptized). Then, immediately after hearing Philip’s teaching, he gets baptized. If baptism was symbolic, why did the Ethiopian decide that he had to get baptized then and there? The only obvious answer is that Philip had explained that baptism was a part of salvation and the Eunuch had to be baptized in order to be saved. Philip was present, heard Peter’s message that in order to get sins remitted, one must repent and be baptized (Acts 2:38-39). If it was symbolic, and one just did it to show to the world that one had already been saved by just believing, the Eunuch would have been told to wait, until he could demonstrate this to other people. Immediately after the baptism is when the Spirit comes. Now true, it came upon Philip, but it is significant that at the time of baptism is when the Spirit came. He would not have rejoiced unless it was at this point that the Spirit came upon the eunuch as well. This is a fulfillment of Jesus’ saying that one must be baptized of water and Spirit.

Their attempts to separate baptism from salvation fails in another quotation: They write: “In Acts 18:8, Crispus believed and was then baptized, "And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, BELIEVED ON THE LORD with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized." They again reiterate that one must believe before being baptized. Those who are of age are indeed required to be believed. But also, his whole house (which includes children who are not of the age to believe) gets baptized. Yet again, in the context of salvation, as soon as Crispus believed, he was baptized. So baptism is yet again a part of the salvation process. Their quotation of Acts 16:31-35 is a similar case that again proves this Catholic point. Part of believing is getting baptized. This again refers us back to Christ’s teaching:

Mark 16:16”He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.”

They then write of Acts 8:12 “Salvation first, THEN water baptism in Acts 8:12:” "But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women." -Acts 8:12” Here again there is no quotation saying what they wrote. Nothing in Acts 8:12 says, that when they believed they were saved, and only after salvation were they then baptized. Apparently Philip taught that baptism was part of salvation, because as soon as they believed they were baptized. If it was only symbolic, why the rush?

They then write: “•Performing some ritual like water baptism could NEVER save for we can not be justified before God except through saving faith in Jesus. Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.” -Galatians 2:16

They somehow equate baptism with works of the law. Nevertheless, they do not give one reference in the Bible that equates baptism with the works of the law. This quotation is therefore irrelevant. Works of the Law is another issue, but that is dealing with two things: People who rely on achieving salvation on their own power, circumcision and Old Testament rituals. Paul nowhere alludes to baptism as being of the works of the law. These were the Judaizers who sought to impose the Works of the Law. A good file on Works of the Law is Can be found by clicking here.

They also write that it couldn’t be baptism because it had to be faith. However, it is not faith or baptism, it is faith AND baptism. Remember, in this very chapter Paul writes Galatians 3:26-27. “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For AS MANY OF YOU AS HAVE BEEN BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST HAVE PUT ON CHRIST.” So in order to put on Christ, one must have faith and baptism. So in other places when Paul talks about putting on Christ and the new self, the background to these verses is baptism (Col. 3:10, Eph. 4:24).

Baptism is seen unanimously by the Church Fathers as the normative necessary means of salvation. The Fathers all read the verses exactly as stated. When they read baptism saves (1 Peter 3:21), that it washes away sins (Acts 22:16, 1 Cor. 6:11), and causes the remission of sins (Acts 2:38), they all took it for what it said. There was not one isolated voice for 1500 years that taught against baptismal regeneration. The first person who taught against it was John Calvin and the Ana-Baptists. Why people who claim to follow scripture reject the plain meaning of scripture is because they have decided to follow a man-made tradition, against, Jesus, against Peter, and against Paul.

In sum, the Bible says that baptism saves (1 Peter 3:21). They say that baptism does not save. The Bible says that baptism washes away sins (Acts 22:16). They say that baptism does not wash away sins. The Bible says that one must be born of water and spirit (John 3:3-5). They say that water is not necessary. The Bible says that baptism causes the remission of sins (Acts 2:38). They say that baptism does not cause the remission of sins. The Bible says that baptism makes us sons of God (Gal. 3:26-27). They say that baptism does not make us sons. The Bible says that baptism makes one put on Christ (Gal. 3:27). They say that baptism does not make us put on Christ. The Bible says by baptism one puts off the body of sins (Col. 2:12-13, Rom. 6:3-4). They say that baptism does not put off the body of sins.

Who really believes in the Bible?

Thus the Catechism is proved to be true again.

There are many other allusions to the salvific power of baptism as well that I did not refer to as well (Mt. 28:19, Mk 1:4-8; Mt. 3:13-17; Jn 1:26-34; 1 Cor. 10:1-4; Eph 4:4-6; Eph 5:25-27;, and others). A good reference for further study of the verses mentioned is found in the book “Crossing the Tiber, Evangelical Protestants Discover the Historical Church,” Ignatius Press, by Stephen Ray, an Evangelical who found the fullness of truth in the Catholic Faith. It can be purchased via Amazon Press at this url Ignatius Press also has a description of the book here and it can also be purchased by calling (800) 651-1531.

There was a critique of this article. Click here to see my response to this critique.

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