Discipleship – Level 1 Lesson 8

Level 1 Lesson 8

WATER BAPTISM
By Don Krow

Question: “I need to know if you have to be baptized to go to heaven. I love God
and was baptized when I was seven years old. I am now eighteen years old, and someone
from a non-denominational church told me that no one can be saved and baptized at such
a young age. They also said that you have to be baptized to go to heaven, but my Baptist
family said that you don’t. I just want to go to heaven. I am living for God in every way
that I can, but I need to know if I must be baptized again now that I am supposedly of age
to be baptized. Please help me ASAP. God bless and thanks.”

Response: Salvation and the forgiveness of sins come freely as a gift through
faith in Jesus Christ. Acts 10:43 states: “All the prophets testify about Him that everyone
who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins through His Name” (New International
Version). Salvation comes through faith; that is, trust and reliance upon Jesus and His
shed blood to give you a right standing before God. In Acts 10:44-48, the Holy Ghost
was given to the believers (confirming their salvation) before they were baptized.

Even though this is true, at other times it seems that the forgiveness of sins
happened at the time of baptism (Acts 2:38). This is because baptism is an expression, or
act, of faith that was carried out at the time that a person turned to Jesus in repentance
and faith (Mark 16:16 says, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that
believeth not shall be damned”). It was also a way of calling on the Lord for a clear
conscience (Acts 22:16 and 1 Pet. 3:21).

If you truly turned to Jesus from your heart at the age of seven and were baptized,
God accepts your childlike faith. Baptism does have requirements. One requirement is
repentance. Did you have a change of heart and a change of mind that resulted in turning
from sin to Jesus and His forgiveness (Acts 2:38, 20:21, and 17:30)? Did you exercise
faith in Jesus as your Lord and Savior (Mark 16:16, John 3:16, and Rom. 10:9-10)? If
not, then turn to Jesus now, repent from your sins, turn to His grace to forgive you, and
seal that decision to follow Him through water baptism.

Baptism is an act that expresses one’s faith in Jesus. Without that faith, the act
means nothing. People who turned to Jesus as Lord and Savior were willing to express
that faith and openly confess Jesus in this public way. People who say “no” to Jesus’
command are showing, to some extent, a dead faith. Faith is dead when people are
unwilling to express it (James 2:18-19). Faith alone saves, but saving faith is never
alone. It is always willing to express itself. Baptism was a way of expressing that faith.
Baptism is not what saves; it is Jesus. Water doesn’t wash away sins; it is the blood
of Jesus. But faith applies His blood to you, and sometimes that faith was expressed at
the time a person was baptized (Acts 22:16). The question is, have you repented? Do you
believe in Him (Jesus)? If so, why do you delay—arise and be baptized!

33Discipleship Questions

1.  What is the question that this young man is asking? ___________________________

2.  According to Acts 10:43, salvation comes to us how? __________________________

3.  Baptism is an expression of faith that usually takes place at the time of salvation. How
does Acts 2:38 express this truth? ____________________________________________

4.  How does Mark 16:16 express this truth? ____________________________________

5.  Baptism is a way of calling upon the Lord. How does Acts 22:16 express this truth?
________________________________________________________________________

6.  Baptism is a way to call upon the Lord for a clear conscience. Does 1 Peter 3:21
confirm this truth? ________________________________________________________

7.  What are the requirements for baptism, according to Acts 2:38? __________________

8.  What are the requirements for baptism, according to Mark 16:16? ________________

9.  Can an infant repent? ___________________________________________________

10.  Can an infant believe? __________________________________________________

11.  Read Acts 10:43-48. What is the next step, after faith in Christ, that a believer should
take? ___________________________________________________________________

Scriptures to Use with Questions

Acts 10:43 – “To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever
believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.”

Acts 2:38 – “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.”

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

Acts 22:16 – “And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy
sins, calling on the name of the Lord.”

1 Peter 3:21 – “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.”
34
Acts 10:44-48 – “[44] While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them
which heard the word. [45] And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished,
as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of
the Holy Ghost. [46] For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then
answered Peter, [47] Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which
have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? [48] And he commanded them to be baptized
in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.”

Answer Key

1.  What is the question that this young man is asking? If he needs to be baptized to go
to heaven.

2.  According to Acts 10:43, salvation comes to us how? Freely, as a gift through faith
in Jesus Christ.

3.  Baptism is an expression of faith that usually takes place at the time of salvation. How
does Acts 2:38 express this truth? Peter said to “repent and be baptized.”

4.  How does Mark 16:16 express this truth? Jesus said, “He that believes and is
baptized shall be saved,” implying that it can happen at the same time.

5.  Baptism is a way of calling upon the Lord. How does Acts 22:16 express this truth?
This scripture says that as a person calls upon the name of the Lord, their sins will
be washed away. It appears that calling on the name of the Lord can be vocal (Luke
18:13) or through the act of baptism, as it appears to be in this scripture.

6.  Baptism is a way to call upon the Lord for a clear conscience. Does 1 Peter 3:21
confirm this truth? Yes.

7.  What are the requirements for baptism, according to Acts 2:38? Repentance.

8.  What are the requirements for baptism, according to Mark 16:16? A person must
believe.

9.  Can an infant repent? No.

10.  Can an infant believe? No.

11.  Read Acts 10:43-48. What is the next step, after faith in Christ, that a believer should
take? Water baptism.

35Copyright © 2004, Don W. Krow
Permission is granted to duplicate or reproduce for discipleship purposes on the condition
that it is distributed free of charge.

Discipleship Evangelism
P.O. Box 17007
Colorado Springs, Colorado 80935-7007 U.S.A.
http://www.delessons.org

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