Do you really want to be a Christian? If so, it is a very simple procedure, and yet there is much confusion as to how in the world today. One popular church discipline says that the doctrine of Faith only is a most wholesome doctrine and very full of comfort. But listen to what the Bible says, “You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only” (James 2:24). There’s quite a difference in the two. There is no question whatsoever that salvation is by faith, all admit that. The question is, IS SALVATION BY FAITH ONLY? To answer that question, we must define faith. What kind are you talking about? Are you saved by a vain faith? Are you saved by a dead faith? Are you saved by an active faith? Isn’t it noteworthy that in the book of conversions (Acts), that each person saved was saved when their faith led them to be baptized. There was never a saved person in the New Testament dispensation who had not been baptized. Baptism was then, and is now, the consummating act that puts one into Christ. In fact, the Galatian letter tells us just that. “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3:26-27).
How do we gain faith? The Bible answers that question in Romans 10:17, “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” For an example of grace, faith, and works read Joshua, chapter 6 and 2 Kings 5. You will gain a clear understanding of how these three ties together. The first two things that every soul must do is to hear about God and the gospel of Christ, and then believe God and the teaching of Christ and the inspired apostles as they direct us in what we must do in order to gain salvation.
The reason I would not ask if one believed that God for Christ’s sake had pardoned his sin, is that pardon comes, not when one believes, but when one is baptized unto the remission of sins (Read Acts 2:38). But if we confess Christ as Lord, we are saying that He is the Son of God and is the master of my life, and if one believes that, baptism is no problem. Confession of faith is outward profession of the inward trust one has in Christ.
Is baptism really commanded? Listen to what the Bible says, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved” (Mark 16:16); “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38); “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us" (1 Peter 3:21); “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19); “And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.” (Acts 22:16). These scriptures are but a few from the Word of God that clearly shows that faith must be accompanied with action on our part. Baptism is necessary for remission of sins and the hope of everlasting life. Have you been baptized into Christ for the forgiveness of your sins?