Does a person need to be baptized in water to be saved?

Commentary by:  Gordon King

Hello folks, I pray that all are well and under the guidance and protection of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Amen

I recently received a comment on my “Get Saved” page.  The reader believes that in order to be saved one must be both baptized in water and the holy spirit.  There seems to be a lot of confusion among believers regarding this issue.  I have responded to this individual with some interesting points which I believe prove that we absolutely do not need to be baptized in physical water to be born again.  Being baptized in physical water is an act of faith and obedience to God after one is already saved.  Amen

I will post this persons comment along with my follow-up comments.  I will leave out the persons name for anonymity.   I pray that this helps many believers understand just what Jesus said about our salvation.  I also pray that this may be a blessing to you.

Anonymous commenter:    You do have to be baptized by the water to be saved Jesus said in john 3:5 verily verily I say unto you unless a man is born of water and the spirit he cannot enter the kingdom.    Jesus tells us right there we can’t enter heaven unless we are baptized by the water and the holy spirit.

Gordon King:  No you do not. If that were true then we would be saved by our works. Then we could boast that we saved ourselves by our good works.   God Bless!

Gordon King:  Jesus wanted us to be baptized in water as an act of faith in our salvation. This should be the first thing we do after being saved, but is not required.

Gordon King: 

Please take the time to study the bible and it’s interpretation. If something is not so clear, you must compare these passages with other passages in the bible. You are quoting scripture from John, study the rest of what John had to say, please don’t take scripture out of context.

If Jesus meant that we need to be “baptized in water” in order to be saved then, the bible contradicts itself in many places. This is not true.

The passage you are quoting does not say “unless one is baptized by the water”, it says “unless one is born of water and spirit”. Two very different things.

Jesus says that he is the “living water” (spiritually speaking):

John 7:37-39 (Rivers of Living Water)
37 On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ ” 39 Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive, for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

John 4:10
10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.

Titus 3:5
5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

1 Corinthians 6:11
11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

You see, the Spirit of God is the “living water”. This is what he meant when he said “you must be born of the water and the spirit”. Not of physical earthly water, but of Holy Spiritual water, living water. The water of God, the “Holy Spirit”. When you believe in Jesus and are born again, you are anointed with the Holy Spirit, filled with living water. I don’t know about you, but when I was saved, I was filled with God’s living water, and I felt it rushing through every fiber of my body.

John 3:16
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

When Jesus was on the cross, there were two criminals on crosses next to him, one on the right and one on the left.

Luke 23:42-43
42 And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” 43 And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”


Did this man get baptized in water? No! How did he have a chance to get baptized in water, he was dying while nailed to a cross! He merely believed that Jesus was God. That’s it. Jesus told him that he will be with him TODAY! in Paradise. Think about it.

Please read this and study a bit more. Pray for God to give you vision and truth in understanding. Amen ;-)

15 thoughts on “Does a person need to be baptized in water to be saved?

  1. Thank GOD and thank you, I thought you had to be physically baptised, too. Everytime I talk about GOD and Jesus I start crying, everytime I go to church I start crying. My gentleman friend told me that my tears are baptising me. Reading your explanation of whether we need to be baptised physically in water made me cry for joy, in that I just felt a rush of peace fall over me. I love GOD and Jesus. I am 63 years old and have never been baptised, but now I see I am being baptised over and over and over again. I feel reborn.

  2. Hello Janet! Thank you for your comments and encouragement.
    I am not so sure about your tears baptizing you, never heard that before or read it in the bible.
    Being baptized in water in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit is not necessary for salvation, but an act of faith which all believers should do after being saved. It is never too late to get baptized.
    I hope this helps and is an encouragement to you! God Bless Sister!

  3. I thank God for bringing this website my way. Truly, many christian especially the growing ones believed the Bible is talking about the physical water. God bless you sir. I am a growing christian and I would love to see and read more of your post and books.

  4. Gods grace plus our faith and we are saved faith = believe same thing eph 2:8

    Gordon jesus did not go to heaven that day, he merely promised that man that day

    Luke 23:43
    verily I say unto you(,) today youll shall be with me in paradise OR
    verily I say unto you today(,) youll shall be with me in paradise

    jesus did not ascend to heaven until later…. jesus did not rise for 3 days
    so the coma should be after today as in this promise I make you this day – today

    since scripture says it can only be this way – 2 thes 1:7 paul tells us to wait with them until jesus is revealed from heaven during the gathering together – rapture

    paul still waits and so does this man on the cross

  5. One thing: jesus Didn’t recieve the holy spirit until after he came out of the water

  6. Please Lord Save me and my family, I repent my Sins, I am sorry for my sins which I repeated again and again. I also ask for forgiveness of my Family’s Sins. I was a Non-christian but since last month when I accepted you, I followed you I gave my life to you Jesus, come into my heart, Bless me Lord, shower me with your blood, I shall devote my life to you my Lord, Please baptize me with the Holy spirit. I don’t want any wealth or fame, I just want you in my life now and forever.


  7. Thanks for your video link mrssliwinski. However I disagree with you. There are many types of baptism, not just in physical water.

    The apostle Peter tells us that we are saved and baptized (through our good conscience toward God) through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

    1 Peter 3:18-22
    18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us[e] to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit, 19 by whom also He went and preached to the spirits in prison, 20 who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited[f] in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. 21 There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers having been made subject to Him.

    When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior we are baptized with the Holy Spirit of God. If this were not true, how do you explain the criminals on the crosses next to Jesus at His crucifixion? Jesus told the one that believed that he would be with Him in paradise. Yet, he was not baptized in physical water. When would this man have had a chance to get physically baptized in water before his death? He couldn’t have, yet Jesus told him that he would be with Him in paradise. So what you are claiming sounds like a contradiction of the bible. I know the bible does not contradict itself.

    Being baptized in water does not save us, Jesus Christ saves us. Are you saying that the blood of Jesus was not enough to save us, that we need to do something in order to get saved? So that I could then boast about what “I” did in order to get saved. The bible teaches against this train of thought.

    Ephesians 2:8
    “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

    Acts 1:5 “for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

    Baptism of the Holy Spirit does not mean being baptized in physical water. Baptism in physical water is an act of our obedience to God, not a condition of salvation. If it were then the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ was not enough. It’s about God’s grace and His gift to us. If we need to physically do something to receive it then it is not from the grace of God. It’s not about us or what we do, but what He did for us. It’s about Jesus and His love for us. Isn’t that enough? It is for me.

    God bless mrssliwinski!

  8. This baptism which I speak of is spiritual in nature, not of the flesh. When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior we are baptized with the Holy Spirit, and the Living Water of God Almighty. Jesus Himself tells us that He is the “Living Water”.

    I was just thinking about something which may help to clear things up, or at least give a different perspective. Lets say that there is a Christian revival in a large stadium. There are about 30,000 people in attendance. Lets suppose that one third of them accept Christ that day. Are they saved? Or do they have to wait until they can find the next “physical” water baptism? What if they all don’t live that long? Lets just say that a family of five all accepted Christ at the revival. On the way home their mini-van was struck head-on by a 5th wheel truck. The entire family was killed instantly. Was the family saved or are they doomed for hell? They had no way of getting “physically” baptized after leaving the service.

    Getting saved is a matter of the heart, of the spirit, not of the flesh. We are saved and justified through faith, by His grace through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, by the propitiation of His blood.

    Romans 3:21-26
    “But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.”

    Romans 4:5
    “But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness,”

    Romans 10:8-13
    ‘But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): 9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. 13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” ‘

    Ephesians 1:13-14
    “In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.”

    Acts 13:38-39
    “Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through this Man is preached to you the forgiveness of sins; 39 and by Him everyone who believes is justified from all things from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses.”

    We are saved and justified (made righteous) by believing in Jesus Christ. By believing that He is God in the flesh, that He died on the cross, was resurrected and ascended into heaven to sit at the right hand of our Father. Once we believe this we are saved, and we are sealed by His Holy Spirit. Forever!

    God bless!

  9. Actually you are mistaken “Truth be Told”.
    This is how it is written in scripture (three versions):

    Luke 23:43New International Version (NIV)

    43 Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

    Luke 23:43New King James Version (NKJV)

    43 And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”

    Luke 23:43English Standard Version (ESV)

    43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”

    I know that Jesus did not ascend into heaven the day that He died on the cross. However, I believe what Jesus said. He said “Today you will be with Me in paradise”; not, “Today, you will be with Me in paradise”. Many of the things of God and heaven are a mystery to us. None of us know it all.

    As far as not being with the Lord until the rapture? If this is so then why do the apostles Paul and Timothy tell us that if we depart we will be present with the Lord?

    Philippians 1:21-23
    “For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 But if I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. 23 For I am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better.”

    Why does King Solomon, the wisest man to ever live tell us in the book of Ecclesiastes 12:7, that our bodies return to the earth, but our spirits to God? If our spirit returns to God, then we will be with God.
    “And the dust returns to the earth as it was, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.”

    The apostle Paul tells us clearly that at home in the body is absent from the Lord, and absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. Many shall not see this nor shall they believe it. So be it. This is what I believe, what I read and hear.
    2 Corinthians 5:6-8
    “So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. 7 For we walk by faith, not by sight. 8 We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”

    God bless!

  10. Hello again “Truth be told”.
    Jesus is God, always has been. He did not need to be baptized in water. There were several reasons I believe that He was baptized in water. First, He was demonstrating to the people that He was the Messiah. Second, He was giving a representation of what is coming to believers. Third, He is honoring His Father in heaven.

    And what does Jesus being baptized and receiving the Holy Spirit have to do with our salvation anyway? God is mysterious in His ways. Many times He gives us a foreshadowing of things to come. That is exactly what this represents. Jesus the Messiah, Savior of the World. Believe in Him and you also shall receive the Holy Spirit of God. Not get baptized in physical water and receive the Holy Spirit of God. This is not scriptural. This is a representation of Jesus being the “Living Water”, the “Water of Life”. It is He who gives the Holy Spirit, not the physical water. Remember, He, the Father, and the Holy Spirit are one.

    God bless!

  11. Wow. I have always thought baptism with water was not necessary for salvation. Talking with people about it sometimes I was not so sure. After reading this I understand about water baptism and know for sure it is not necessary. Thank you again Gordon for a wonderful, easy to comprehend explanation about this subject.

  12. You are very welcome Elaine! Although physical water baptism is not necessary for our salvation, God does want us to do it after being saved. It’s an outward act of our faith and devotion. So many just do not understand, yet I see it clearly. God bless!

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