Post 4 discussed the fundamental principle set forth in ARTICLE XVII (Chicago Statement on Biblical Hermeneutics), which reads:
We affirm the unity, harmony and consistency of Scripture and declare that it is its own best interpreter.
This principle has been called the “analogy of faith.” One article entitled “The Analogy of Faith: Does Scripture Interpret Scripture?” by Thomas A. Home (June 11, 2009) at the Christian Research Institute website (link: https://www.equip.org/articles/the-analogy-of-faith/ ) expands upon on the analogy of faith:
The analogy of faith is not the principle that Scripture interprets Scripture, but that all Scripture is in agreement and will not contradict itself. It assumes the unity and harmony of teaching throughout the Bible. In other words, when multiple passages say something about a topic (either explicitly or implicitly), then what those passages say about that topic will be consistent and will not be contradictory. … The analogy of faith forces us to dig further to understand how passages that appear to be contradictory should be understood.
This brings us to another aspect of the analogy of faith, that is, that we should interpret unclear passages in light of clear passages, not the other way around. Milton Terry says the expression analogy of faith “denotes that general harmony of fundamental doctrine which pervades the entire Scriptures.…No single statement or obscure passage of one book can be allowed to set aside a doctrine which is clearly established by many passages. The obscure texts must be interpreted in the light of those which are plain and positive.”2 [Footnote 2 reads: Milton S. Terry, Biblical Hermeneutics: A Treatise on the Interpretation of the Old and New Testaments, vol. 2, Library of Biblical and Theological Literature, ed. George R. Crooks and John F. Hurst (New York: Phillips & Hunt, 1883),579.] When a particular passage is unclear to us, we can and should go to other passages that address the same topic more clearly in order to help us understand the unclear passage.
In reference to the application of the analogy of faith to this analysis, many texts identify pisteuō alone as the necessary requirement for salvation. My analysis of the texts baptismal regenerationists use for support must factor in the many pisteuō alone texts since they contradict the doctrine of baptismal regeneration.
Set out below are many New Testament texts that use pisteuō in a salvation context and not in proximity to water baptism. To arrive at the below listing, I evaluated a listing of all the New Testament passages that clearly used pisteuō in the context of salvation. I tried to be objective and I hope I carried out that goal.
SELECTED NEW TESTAMENT PASSAGES THAT USE pisteuō ALONE
The below texts contain usages of pisteuō alone and not in close proximity to a reference to water baptism.
Mark 1:15 (NASB95) – 15 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”
Luke 8:12–13 (NASB95) – 12 “Those beside the road are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their heart, so that they will not believe and be saved. 13 “Those on the rocky soil are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no firm root; they believe for a while, and in time of temptation fall away.
John 1:12-13 (NASB95) – 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
John 3:14–18 (NASB95) – 14 “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; 15 so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life. 16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 “For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 “He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
John 3:36 (NASB95) – 36 “He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”
John 4:39–42 (NASB95) – 39 From that city many of the Samaritans believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified, “He told me all the things that I have done.” 40 So when the Samaritans came to Jesus, they were asking Him to stay with them; and He stayed there two days. 41 Many more believed because of His word; 42 and they were saying to the woman, “It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves and know that this One is indeed the Savior of the world.”
John 5:24 (NASB95) – 24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.
John 6:35 (NASB95) – 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.
John 6:40 (NASB95) – 40 “For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.”
John 6:47 (NASB95) – 47 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life.
John 7:38–39 (NASB95) – 38 “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’ ” 39 But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
John 8:23-24 (NASB95) –23 And He was saying to them, “You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world. 24 “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”
John 11:25–26 (NASB95) – 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”
John 11:40 (NASB95) – 40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”
John 12:35-36 (NASB95) –35 So Jesus said to them, “For a little while longer the Light is among you. Walk while you have the Light, so that darkness will not overtake you; he who walks in the darkness does not know where he goes. 36 “While you have the Light, believe in the Light, so that you may become sons of Light.” These things Jesus spoke, and He went away and hid Himself from them.
John 12:44-46 (NASB95) –44 And Jesus cried out and said, “He who believes in Me, does not believe in Me but in Him who sent Me. 45 “He who sees Me sees the One who sent Me. 46 “I have come as Light into the world, so that everyone who believes in Me will not remain in darkness.
John 20:29 (NASB95) – 29 Jesus said to him, “Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.”
John 20:31 (NASB95) – 31 but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.
Acts 4:4 (NASB95) – 4 But many of those who had heard the message believed; and the number of the men came to be about five thousand.
Acts 4:32 (NASB95) – 32 And the congregation of those who believed were of one heart and soul; and not one of them claimed that anything belonging to him was his own, but all things were common property to them.
Acts 9:42 (NASB95) – 42 It became known all over Joppa, and many believed in the Lord.
Acts 10:43 (NASB95) –42 “And He ordered us to preach to the people, and solemnly to testify that this is the One who has been appointed by God as Judge of the living and the dead. 43 “Of Him all the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins.”
Acts 11:15–18 (NASB95) – 15 “And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them just as He did upon us at the beginning. 16 “And I remembered the word of the Lord, how He used to say, ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17 “Therefore if God gave to them the same gift as He gave to us also after believing in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God’s way?” 18 When they heard this, they quieted down and glorified God, saying, “Well then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life.”
Acts 11:21 (NASB95) – 20 But there were some of them, men of Cyprus and Cyrene, who came to Antioch and began speaking to the Greeks also, preaching the Lord Jesus. 21 And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a large number who believed turned to the Lord.
Acts 13:12 (NASB95) – 12 Then the proconsul believed when he saw what had happened, being amazed at the teaching of the Lord.
Acts 13:39 (NASB95) – 38 “Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through Him forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, 39 and through Him everyone who believes is freed from all things, from which you could not be freed through the Law of Moses.
Acts 13:48 (NASB95) – 48 When the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord; and as many as had been appointed to eternal life believed.
Acts 14:1 (NASB95) – 1 In Iconium they entered the synagogue of the Jews together, and spoke in such a manner that a large number of people believed, both of Jews and of Greeks.
Acts 14:23 (NASB95) – 23 When they had appointed elders for them in every church, having prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord in whom they had believed.
Acts 15:5 (NASB95) – 5 But some of the sect of the Pharisees who had believed stood up, saying, “It is necessary to circumcise them and to direct them to observe the Law of Moses.”
Acts 15:7 (NASB95) – 7 After there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, “Brethren, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles would hear the word of the gospel and believe.
Acts 16:31 (NASB95) – 31 They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
Acts 17:12 (NASB95) – 11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so. 12 Therefore many of them believed, along with a number of prominent Greek women and men.
Acts 17:34 (NASB95) – 33 So Paul went out of their midst. 34 But some men joined him and believed, among whom also were Dionysius the Areopagite and a woman named Damaris and others with them.
Acts 18:27 (NASB95) – 27 And when he wanted to go across to Achaia, the brethren encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him; and when he had arrived, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace,
Acts 19:18 (NASB95) – 18 Many also of those who had believed kept coming, confessing and disclosing their practices.
Acts 21:20 (NASB95) – 20 And when they heard it they began glorifying God; and they said to him, “You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the Law;
Acts 21:25 (NASB95) – 25 “But concerning the Gentiles who have believed, we wrote, having decided that they should abstain from meat sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled and from fornication.”
Acts 22:19 (NASB95) – 19 “And I said, ‘Lord, they themselves understand that in one synagogue after another I used to imprison and beat those who believed in You.
Romans 1:16 (NASB95) – 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
Romans 3:22 (NASB95) – 22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction;
Romans 4:3-5 (NASB95) – 3 For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.” 4 Now to the one who works, his wage is not credited as a favor, but as what is due. 5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness,
Romans 4:10-11 (NASB95) – 10 How then was it credited? While he was circumcised, or uncircumcised? Not while circumcised, but while uncircumcised; 11 and he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had while uncircumcised, so that he might be the father of all who believe without being circumcised, that righteousness might be credited to them,
Romans 4:17–18 (NASB95) – 17 (as it is written, “A father of many nations have I made you”) in the presence of Him whom he believed, even God, who gives life to the dead and calls into being that which does not exist. 18 In hope against hope he believed, so that he might become a father of many nations according to that which had been spoken, “So shall your descendants be.”
Romans 4:24 (NASB95) – 24 but for our sake also, to whom it will be credited, as those who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead,
Romans 9:33 (NASB95) – 33 just as it is written, “Behold, I lay in Zion a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense, And he who believes in Him will not be disappointed.”
Romans 10:4 (NASB95) – 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.
Romans 10:9–14 (NASB95) – 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.” 14 How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher?
Romans 13:11 (NASB95) – 11 Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed.
1 Corinthians 1:21 (NASB95) – 21 For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.
1 Corinthians 3:5 (NASB95) – 5 What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, even as the Lord gave opportunity to each one.
1 Corinthians 14:22 (NASB95) – 22 So then tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophecy is for a sign, not to unbelievers but to those who believe.
1 Corinthians 15:2 (NASB95) – 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain.
1 Corinthians 15:11 (NASB95) – 11 Whether then it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed.
Galatians 3:6 (NASB95) – 6 Even so Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.
Galatians 3:22 (NASB95) – 22 But the Scripture has shut up everyone under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.
Ephesians 1:13 (NASB95) – 13 In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise,
Ephesians 1:19 (NASB95) – 19 and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might
Philippians 1:29 (NASB95) – 29 For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,
1 Thessalonians 2:13 (NASB95) – 13 For this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe.
1 Thessalonians 4:14 (NASB95) – 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus.
2 Thessalonians 1:10 (NASB95) – 10 when He comes to be glorified in His saints on that day, and to be marveled at among all who have believed—for our testimony to you was believed.
2 Thessalonians 2:12 (NASB95) – 12 in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness.
1 Timothy 1:16 (NASB95) – 16 Yet for this reason I found mercy, so that in me as the foremost, Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life.
2 Timothy 1:12 (NASB95) – 12 For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day.
Titus 3:8 (NASB95) – 8 This is a trustworthy statement; and concerning these things I want you to speak confidently, so that those who have believed God will be careful to engage in good deeds. These things are good and profitable for men.
Hebrews 4:3 (NASB95) – 3 For we who have believed enter that rest, just as He has said, “As I swore in My wrath, They shall not enter My rest,” although His works were finished from the foundation of the world.
Hebrews 11:6 (NASB95) – 6 And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.
James 2:23 (NASB95) – 23 and the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “And Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness,” and he was called the friend of God.
1 Peter 1:8 (NASB95) – 8 and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
1 Peter 2:6–7 (NASB95) – 6 For this is contained in Scripture: “Behold, I lay in Zion a choice stone, a precious corner stone, And he who believes in Him will not be disappointed.” 7 This precious value, then, is for you who believe; but for those who disbelieve, “The stone which the builders rejected, This became the very corner stone,”
1 John 3:23 (NASB95) – 23 This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us.
1 John 5:1 (NASB95) – 1 Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him.
1 John 5:5 (NASB95) – 5 Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
1 John 5:10 (NASB95) – 10 The one who believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself; the one who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has given concerning His Son.
1 John 5:13 (NASB95) – 13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.
The above about one hundred usages of pisteuō alone in the context of salvation comprise strong evidence that salvation is by pisteuō alone. The analogy of faith points out the importance of the above usages to my analysis of the texts used to support baptismal regeneration.
Before I look at the texts used to support baptismal regeneration, I will exegete Galatians 1:6-9, highlighting this issue’s eternal importance.
IF YOU ARE UNSURE ABOUT YOUR SALVATION
If you are unsure about your salvation, you need to check out my book The Salvation Meter: Biblical Self-Diagnostic Tests to Examine Your Salvation and Spiritual Growth (book link at Xulon Press: https://www.xulonpress.com/bookstore/bookdetail.php?PB_ISBN=9781662828638 ). At Amazon the book link is https://www.amazon.com/Salavation-Meter-Biblical-Self-Diagnostic-Spiritual/dp/1662828632 . I also have a website in which I am updating the content in the book. The link to my website for the book is https://thesalvationmeter.com .
IF YOU ARE NOT A CHRISTIAN
… please (1) read through “God’s Plan of Salvation” so you can understand what God did for you through His only unique Son, Jesus Christ, and (2), from the bottom of your heart, pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” meaning every word. If you do, you will be reconciled to God – saved – through Jesus Christ.
God’s Plan of Salvation
In the beginning, God, who is holy, created the entire universe. As a part of His creative actions, He made humans in His image to know Him. For a while, everything was right between God and our ancestors, Adam and Eve. But Adam sinned, and his sin was passed down to all of humankind whereby we became separated from God. Nothing we could do on our own could bridge that separation so that without God’s intervention, hell would be our eternal destination.
Fortunately for us, in His great love and mercy God provided humankind with the only means of salvation, which is through Jesus Christ who is God’s only unique Son. While retaining His deity, God the Son became a man in Jesus, lived a perfect life, and died on the cross, thus fulfilling the law Himself and taking on Himself the punishment for the sins of all those who would ever repent and trust in Him for their salvation. Jesus rose from the dead, showing that God the Father accepted Christ’s sacrifice and that God’s wrath against us has been exhausted. He now calls us to repent of our sins and trust alone in what Christ did to save us.
If we repent of our sins and completely trust in Christ alone that He died for our sins and rose to life from the dead, we are born again into a new life, an eternal life with God.
Scripture References: Genesis 1:1, 27, 31; Habakkuk 1:13; Genesis 2:7, 18, 21-25; Genesis 3:1-7, 23-24; Isaiah 59:2; Romans 3:19-20, 23; 5:17-19; Ephesians 2:8-9; Romans 6:23; John 14:6; Acts 4:12; 1 Corinthians 15:3; 1 John 4:10; John 3:16-18; Mark 1:15; Romans 1:4; 4:25; John 3:5-8; 1 Peter 1:3.
Lord, Jesus Christ, the only unique Son of God, thank You for Your free gift of eternal life. I know I’m a sinner who cannot save myself no matter what I do, and I deserve to spend eternity in hell. But, I know that because You loved me so much, You voluntarily died on the cross for me taking my sins upon Yourself, and You physically bodily rose from the grave showing that Your sacrificial death was sufficient payment to give me eternal life in Heaven. I now repent of my sins and trust alone in what You did for my eternal salvation. Please take control of my life as I now receive You as my Lord and Savior. Thank You so much for saving me. I am now Yours forever! (Scripture references: John 1:1-4, 11-14; John 3:16; Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9; Romans 3:21-26; Isaiah 53:4-6; Mark 1:15; Acts 16:31; Acts 4:12; Romans 10:9-10, 13; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; John 10:27-29).
Upon your salvation, you must find a spiritually solid Bible-believing church that (1) teaches that the sixty-six books of the Bible are the inspired, inerrant, and infallible Word of God, (2) believes in the doctrine of the Trinity, which means that there is one God who eternally exists as three distinct Persons — the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – and each Person is fully God, and (3) teaches that salvation is by grace through faith and not by works (e.g., water baptism by immersion).
ONE CAUTIONARY POINT. Please do not make the mistake of thinking that once you become a Christian, your life will become easy. Most likely, it will become more difficult. God’s blessing of salvation and life’s difficulties are not mutually exclusive. Jesus told His disciples, “If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first.” John 15:18 (NLT). Always keep in mind that you have an eternal home in heaven waiting for you per John 14:2–4 (NLT):
2 There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? 3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.”
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Scripture marked “NASB95” are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.”
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