By   •   June 1, 2004   •   Topics: ,


Is baptism necessary for salvation?


Mr. Graham has stated: “I believe baptism is important, and I have been baptized. But I think we violate the Scriptures when we make baptism the prime requirement for salvation … Paul’s central theme was Christ and His saving power. Although he spoke of baptism, he said: ‘I thank God that I baptized none of you … lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name’ (1 Corinthians 1:14-15).”

“Baptism is a conclusive act of obedience and witness to the world that we are Christ’s. I believe in it wholeheartedly. In our crusades we don’t baptize because we feel that this should be done by the local pastors—and that if I baptized, some people would say they had been baptized by me, and that would be putting the emphasis on the wrong person. To one who has received Christ, baptism is a necessary and meaningful experience. But, I must say with Paul: ‘Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel’ (1 Corinthians 1:17).”

“You may know that we urge immediate and extensive Bible study for each convert. As the Scripture is reviewed, the place of baptism will surely be discovered. If baptism were a requirement for salvation, we would certainly say that. But you couldn’t support that knowing, for example, that the thief on the cross had no opportunity for baptism or church membership. Yet on his confession, paradise was secured. Jesus said to him, ‘Today shalt thou be with me in paradise’ (Luke 23:43).”

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  1. William Newton says:

    Thank you for this explanation. I have been asked this question many ti es and will now use this to explain this better.

  2. Phillip Jarmon says:

    First let me say, I do not believe that any work will get someone into Heaven. The precious blood of Christ saved me. I believe that baptism is essential for salvation. Belief alone is not accurate. Did the Devil not believe? Belief only is a very slippery slope, especially since the scripture is clear that baptism is essential. I would be very careful to argue differently. How amazing is it that some people attend a Baptist church and call themselves Baptist; however, the do not believe baptism is necessary for salvation. Explain that. As for the thief on the cross, the new covenant was not in place until Jesus died, the thief on the cross was saved under the old covenant.

  3. Snehlata Rajkumari says:

    Yes baptism is must for each and everyone who have faith on Our father and his son Lord Jesus in conclusion for our salvation.

  4. jonathan mutale says:

    I really love your teaching

  5. Everette Tarver says:

    We praise God that you stand faithfully in the Truth. Because there are so many who teach that Baptism is an essential element in Salvation,please make a clear public statement about that false teaching.

  6. J. Mart says:

    The Great Commission was Jesus Christ’s last commandment to His True Disciples that BELIEVE….

    Matthew 28:19, 20 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

    Jesus Christ Tells about being reborn of water and the spirit, or else we cannot see the kingdom of heaven……both not just one…you cannot separate them, they are intwined.

    John 3:5 “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.”

  7. Esther Lopez says:

    If you repent at your dying bed and accept Jesus as your Savior and due to circumstance your n I are not able to be baptized, will you go to heaven?

  8. Katie says:

    What about John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.” According to this verse all a person has to do is believe. Additionally, what about the deathbed confession? If those that accept Christ on their deathbed aren’t baptized, does this mean they are not saved? I think not. And if God granted a special exception for the deathbed confession wouldn’t every one be granted this? Aren’t we saved by grace?

    1. Liston England says:

      There is No such thing as death bed confession, that’s a myth… Whosoever believe will have absolutely no problem going on to baptism. When John wrote this book he was writing to the church that was falling back into Judaism not to sinners. A little bible study. You or no one else can prove that the thief on the cross was never baptized.

  9. Loveita miller says:

    The thief on the cross. Was under the law of moses at that time. Beside this, Jesus had the power to forgive someone of their sins while he was alive on earth(mat. 9:6)