Confused Ramblings of Men on Baptism – Charles Pogue

Charles Pogue

When our wives find a new recipe they would like to try out on us husbands, they do not just find the name of a dish in a cookbook, close it, and make up their own list of ingredients and cooking directions; they follow the recipe as it appears in the cookbook. To follow the other path would not result in the dish listed in the book. Her own concoction might be better, it might be edible, but it would not be the same. All of us understand this in the realm of cooking, but not all men seem to grasp it in the matter of Biblical Truth.

Recently, we heard two televangelists on the same day, preach on baptism. Amazingly, their messages were an attempt to present the subject of baptism in a positive way, but they committed the same egregious error that our freelance wives would if they took the title of a recipe from the cookbook, made up their own ingredients and cooking directions, and then told us they made the dish found in the book. My wife or yours might improve on a recipe in a book, but no man can improve on any Biblical doctrine. If doctrine is changed, it is no longer truth that saves, but error that condemns.

The feeble attempts of the two aforementioned TV Performers showed just how confusing man can be when he attempts to take a Bible subject, create his own recipe, and tries to pass it off as what the Bible teaches. Both of the aforementioned men told the truth when they said only those who repent are candidates for baptism, and that only immersion is baptism. With these two facts stated correctly, things went downhill from there, because they dared not touch such Scriptures as Acts 2:38; 22:16; or 1 Peter 3:21. Their rejection of the essentialness of baptism for salvation made much of their performances so confusing that those hearing them must either have been baffled, or if they thought about correctly, recognized that neither of these two men had even a hint of knowing what they were talking about.

Repentance, both affirmed is necessary before baptism, but salvation comes before baptism. That means they were saying one is saved before he repents. That cannot be when Jesus said, “I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3, 5).

One of the two men said that in baptism a person leaves behind the old man and puts on the new—an obvious, although selective and subjective illusion to Romans 6. He followed that statement with the immediate reinforcement of his error that one is saved before baptism. If he wanted to keep his following, it was foolish for him to mention that fact, but then, maybe that is why he did not give the Scripture reference for it. Let us help out his blind followers here. Paul reminds the Romans that they were baptized into Christ’s death when they were baptized. It was not until they came forth from the watery grave that they were new creatures. Anyone can figure out that the claim that one can be save and then later shed the old man of sin and put on the new man is an absolute hoax, and as backwards as claiming winter follows the spring.

Regarding the matter of immersion, one of the televangelists said that neither sprinkling nor pouring are baptism, and then he said, if, however, you were sprinkled or had water poured on you at some previous time, “I applaud you.” I immediately wondered, what for? Of course, he did not elaborate; he had already said something he could not explain. To say more would have dug an even deeper hole for him.

He then said, “We don’t baptize infants here at Fellowship Christian.” But then he again assured the audience that if they had had water sprinkled or poured on them when they were babies, he applauded them, too. How typical it is of man to applaud error that it makes him totally discreditable in what little he says that is true. But then, maybe that is the design—to confuse people so much he can keep them believing the popular lie, “It is all on Him. There is nothing you can do to be saved.” With that lie firmly entrenched in their minds, he can proceed to tell them that they can come together for worship when it is really entertainment, instead of reverent scriptural worship. They will keep coming back for more, and not only will they continue to return for the entertainment, they will bring others with them to be entertained, and the numbers of the lost who think they are saved, will continue to swell. All the while, prospects willing to obey the Gospel in truth, and worship God according to His pattern, are getting harder and harder to find. That is most likely why one of these men, who was backed up by a full orchestra and a very large choir defended the act of applauding in worship, say for instance, when someone is baptized.

Wives, you know when you follow a recipe, what you end up with is what is recorded in the book, but if you just take the title and make up your own recipe, it is not the same. Would that men could understand that in important Bible doctrines such as baptism!

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Author: Editor

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