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[quote:2w41j1ra]Read 1 Peter again – doesn’t it say “It is not a removal of dirt from the body but an appeal to God for a clear conscience,[b:2w41j1ra][color=darkred:2w41j1ra] through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, [/color:2w41j1ra][/b:2w41j1ra]who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers subject to him. 1 Peter 3:21-22[/quote:2w41j1ra]
Ron, don’t you see? That’s our point exactly – baptism is a work of Christ, not one where we merit salvation for ourselves.

[quote:2w41j1ra]AND Did the water save anyone? No the ark did – a picture of Christ[/quote:2w41j1ra]
That’s anti-Scriptural. A plain reading of 1Pet. 3:20 shows that’s anti-Scriptural. The Scriptures say that he was saved through water! To deny that is to deny the plain and simple truth.

[quote:2w41j1ra]Did the thief get a time out to get baptized – no[/quote:2w41j1ra]
Special circumstances allow for special things. If Jesus was standing right in front of me now I hardly doubt I would have to receive any sacraments, but the plain and simple truth is that he’s not here and he offered us these divine channels by which to receive his grace.

[quote:2w41j1ra]and did you forget Acts 10:47?-[color=darkred:2w41j1ra][i:2w41j1ra][b:2w41j1ra]Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? [/b:2w41j1ra][/i:2w41j1ra][/color:2w41j1ra][/quote:2w41j1ra]
They are adults – even the Catholic Church requires that adults go through a process of repentance and conversion before they get baptized.

[quote:2w41j1ra]So as you can see – I think you are being mistaken – Baptism is a work that we do – and as Romans 11:6 says – [color=darkred:2w41j1ra][i:2w41j1ra][b:2w41j1ra]And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work. [/b:2w41j1ra][/i:2w41j1ra][/color:2w41j1ra][/quote:2w41j1ra]
[b:2w41j1ra]Context, context, context[/b:2w41j1ra]. Let’s do a quick Bible study. Paul is constantly referrring to the works of the Law – the Jewish Law found in Leviticus and Deuteronomy. The question at hand is whether one still needs to perform the Jewish rituals for salvation, but the answer is no. It was decided at the Council of Jerusalem (somewhere in the book of Acts – I’m too lazy to look it up) that you don’t have to be Jewish to be of Christ. “Works” as referred to in Paul’s letters aren’t works of faith or anything else like that – otherwise it would be contradicting James 2:24.

Baptism and any other sacrament is Christ’s free gift to us for salvation. It is something he does and is possible only because he died and rose again.