Monday, September 5, 2016


Joel Finck

Scripture Reading: Mark 16:16

Today's text has been a problem to many Bible expositors. It seems to be saying that baptism is required for salvation:

"He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned" (Mark 16:16). Some churches simply take it for what it says and require baptism for salvation. Those who understand Paul's epistles reject such a view, for Paul clearly teaches salvation by grace through faith without works. (Romans 4:5, Ephesians 2:8,9, etc.)

This leaves only three approaches to Mark 16:16-- throw out, twist, or rightly divide. Some choose to throw it out, claiming that Mark 16:9-20 is not found in the "oldest and best manuscripts." What they do not tell you is that this passage is found in the majority of manuscripts. The oldest and best (Sinaiticus and Vaticanus manuscripts) have thousands of discrepancies between themselves. No, let us not throw it out!

The second approach is to twist the text, so it does not really mean what it says. Some suggest that because the last half of the verse does not include "and is not baptized" that this somehow changes the plain meaning of the first half of the verse. The Lord did not have to add "and is not baptized" because if a person did not believe, it would not make any difference if he was baptized or not. He would still be damned.

This does not change the fact that the Lord still said; "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved." Let us not twist what it says.

The solution is, of course, to "rightly divide the Word of truth." Baptism was once required as a demonstration of faith, but it is no longer.

  How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Romans 1:16, Romans 10:9-10 and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

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