Errors of the church of Christ (31) – Baptism (2)

5. Moser argues about baptism similarly as he does about repentance: “If baptism is a condition of salvation which is given on the condition of faith in Christ, it too must be related to faith, and so related that its meaning will not oppose the meaning of faith. Now as confession is faith expressed by words, baptism is faith expressed by deed….This view of baptism sanctioned by scripture lifts baptism from a meaningless act of legalism to the high plane of salvation by faith in Christ.” (See Moser.) What do you think?

RT – I will not take exception to these words, but to say that “faith” is also a deed (John 6:29).

6. Regarding Acts 10:44-48, were Cornelius and the other Gentiles (who had heard the gospel, had received the empowering Baptism in the Holy Spirit, and had spoken in tongues and praised God) children of the devil before they were baptized? Or were they children of God filled with the Holy Spirit and later got baptized? Doesn’t the fact that they spoke in tongues prior to baptism prove that they were children of God and thus saved before they were baptized? Doesn’t Peter in Acts 10:43 make it clear that it was the faith that produced remission of sins, and that water baptism came later as a symbol of their new life in Christ?

RT – Does the fact that a donkey spoke by the power of God say anything about the spiritual standing of that donkey? Does the fact that Balaam was a prophet speak anything to his favorable standing before the Lord? The case of Cornelius is clearly an exception to the pattern (a word you hate) that God set forth. That which Peter said in Acts 2:38 – is it true? If it is, how does it relate to 10:44-48? Which one is the norm? Cornelius was told that he would be given words to hear in order to be saved (10:4-5, 22; 11:14). What words did Peter speak in order that he might learn of Jesus? Did he hear those words? Why did Peter command him to be baptized?

7. Doesn’t Peter make it clear in Acts 10:48 that this experience was the same way the apostles received the Holy Spirit at Pentecost? Is there any record in the Bible that the apostles received water baptism?

RT – No, there is no explicit recording of such, unless we make an inference from Acts 1:22. Let me turn to question in your direction and ask you: Were they baptized? If so, why?

8. Doesn’t 1 Corinthians 12:13 show that baptism by the Holy Spirit is what places us in the body of Christ?

RT – That verse can be understood in one of two ways; neither way is troublesome.

9. Your motto is, “Where the Bible speaks we speak; where the Bible is silent we are silent.” But don’t you break that rule all the time? For example, you say, “He that is baptized not shall be damned.” But that phrase does not appear in the Bible, does it? What does appear in the Bible is, “He that believeth not shall be damned.” So haven’t you twisted Scripture?

RT – I laughed when I read this. In fact, you twisted the words of what you think some say about the verse in order to perpetuate your straw man.


10, What do you think about Carl Ketcherside’s charge (please read chapter 9, Christians in Babylon) that, “To demand that one of God’s children be forced to submit to re-baptism at the hands of one of ‘our preachers’ in order to be in ‘our fellowship’ is sectarianism pure and simple…Such Church-of-Christ-isms like all other ‘isms’ are an insult to the persons and dignity of the Holy Spirit by whom we ‘are all baptized into one body.'”

RT – What Carl had to say is simply an opinion – nothing more.