I would tell them that even though water baptism has nothing to do with salvation, it still has a very important place in the believer’s life. I would also tell them that the Savior they profess to believe in has commanded believers to be baptized and thus they should desire to obey Him by being baptized.

We have both of these thoughts brought out in our Lord’s words in Matthew 28:18-20, “And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and MAKE DISCIPLES of all nations, BAPTIZING THEM in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, TEACHING THEM to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age’” (NKJV). Here we see that 1) Jesus commanded believers to baptize other believers, and (by doing so) 2) They were MAKING THEM DISCIPLES. So, baptism is very important, for one BECOMES A DISCIPLE by being baptized. Also, baptism is the Lord’s command and every true believer should gladly desire to please his/her Lord and Savior by being baptized.

Now let’s consider Mark 16:16, “He who believes and IS BAPTIZED will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.” Some have taken this verse to teach that one must be baptized to be saved, but it clearly says “he who DOES NOT BELIEVE will be condemned.” In other words, it is FAITH ALONE that saves and it is the LACK OF FAITH that condemns. Yet baptism is important or Mark would not have spoken of it. Why does he mention baptism? Ah, because Mark knew that baptism should naturally follow salvation as an act of obedience to the Savior who has now become the believer’s LORD! In baptism one is professing the LORDSHIP OF CHRIST. In essence they are saying, “Because Jesus died to save me from my sins, I will now become His disciple and obey all that He commands me.”

In closing, I will simply quote some scriptures that illustrate that once a sinner believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, they were willing to submit to baptism in order to obey Christ’s command to become His disciple.

*Acts 2:41, “Then those who gladly received his word WERE BAPTIZED.”

*Acts 8:35-38, “And Philip…announced the glad tidings of Jesus to him. And as they went along the way, they came upon a certain water, and the eunuch says, Behold water; what hinders my being baptized? And he commanded the chariot to stop. And they went down both to the water, both Philip and the eunuch, and HE BAPTIZED HIM” (DARBY).

*Acts 10:46-47, “Can anyone forbid water, that they should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have? And he commanded them to BE BAPTIZED in the name of the Lord.”

*Acts 18:8, “Then Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his household. And many of the Corinthians, hearing, believed and WERE BAPTIZED.” (319.3) (DO)