Topic(s): Bible Study

Todd Clippard

The most important question a person could ever ask is, “How do I become a Christian?” Though not asked in these exact words, the question is also found at least three times in the New Testament. In Acts 16:30, the Philippian jailer asked, “What must I do to be saved?” The Jews who heard the first gospel sermon on Pentecost of Acts 2 asked the same thing (2:37, and Saul of Tarsus asked the Lord that question (Acts 9:6).

In reading the context of these accounts, one can understand the means by which one becomes a Christian. The jailer was told to believe in the Lord Jesus (Acts 16:31). Those in Acts 2 who believed the preaching of Peter (2:37) were told to repent (2:38). In all three accounts, those who needed to be saved were baptized (Acts 2:41; 9:18; 16:33). 

I might add, though it is not present in these three accounts, one must make a confession of faith in Jesus prior to being baptized. The eunuch made such a confession in Acts 8:37 prior to being baptized. Matthew 10:32 and Romans 10:9-10 also confirm the need to confess the Lord before men.

Baptism is an act of submission required for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38). It is the medium through which sins are washed away (Acts 22:16) by the blood of Jesus Christ (Revelation 1:5). Baptism secures salvation to the obedient believer (Mark 16:16; 1 Peter 3:21), but not unconditionally. The Christian must live faithful to the Lord all of his or her life (Matthew 10:22; Revelation 2:10). John calls this “walking in the light” (1 John 1:7). Walking in the light keeps us in continuous contact with the cleansing blood of Jesus. We will commit sins while walking in the light, but repentance and confession of those sins brings forgiveness.


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