What Must I Do to Be Saved?
A. C. Grider
The question which serves as the heading for this article is the most important question that could ever challenge the mind of man. The Bible teaches that man is a sinner -- that man is lost. If he dies in that condition he will spend eternity in hell where he will be tormented day and night forever. Hence the importance of knowing what to do to be saved.
The answer to the question is found in the Bible. But caution must be taken to select the answer that applies to a particular individual. For instance, if we are talking about the rich young ruler in Matthew 19, the answer would be "go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor." But if we are talking about Zacchaeus the answer might involve giving half of his goods to the poor and restoring what he had taken by false accusation. Anti if we are talking about the woman in Luke 7:50 the plan might involve washing the Lord's feet and kissing them and anointing them. Finally, if we are talking about the thief the answer would be to die and then be with Christ in paradise.
We are not interested in the answer Jesus gave to some individual while he was yet alive anti before he received all power in heaven and on earth (Matt. 28:18). We are interested in an answer Jesus gave which includes us. Now, since Jesus did not personate us or specify us by name, we will have to find an answer which includes us along with all men. Jesus did not give that answer until he received all power and until he became the author of salvation (Heb. 5:8-9). He received this power and became the author of salvation through his death and by his resurrection. THEN he gave the plan of salvation which was for all men. This plan is for "all nations" (Matt. 28:19). It is for "every creature" (Mark 16:15-16). This plan is for "every one of you" (Acts 2:38). This plan is for any "HE" that will do what the Lord said do to be saved.
The answer to the question is "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved" (Mark 16:15-16). All power in heaven and on earth is behind that answer. That answer was given by the author of eternal salvation. That is the only answer Jesus ever gave for our salvation. Jesus was not talking to us or about us when he told that man to sell that which he had. Jesus was not talking to us when he told Zacchaeus that salvation had come to his house. Jesus was not talking to us or about us when he told that woman in Luke 7:50 that her faith had saved her. Jesus was not talking to us nor about us when he told that thief he could be with him that day in paradise. While Jesus was not talking directly TO us, he was certainly talking ABOUT us when he said preach to every creature and when he said he (that means she too) that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.
The examples we have of people complying with the Lord's plan of salvation confirm that the conditions laid down in Mark 16: 15-16 are the conditions of salvation. The conditions were "believe" and "baptize." Look at Acts 2:41 where the people "received" (believed) the word and were baptized. Look at Acts 8:12 where the Samaritans believed and were baptized. Look at Acts 18:8 where the Corinthians believed and were baptized. Look at Acts 19:1-5 where the Ephesians believed and were baptized. Lydia, the Jailor, Cornelius, Sau1 and others believed and were baptized.
Let me appeal to those who may read these lines to turn to the word of God and confirm what I have said and then obey from the heart the form of doctrine involved in believing and being baptized. You will be saved (Mark 16:16). You will have your sins washed away (Acts 22:16). Your sins will be remitted (Acts 2:38). You will be in Christ (Rom. 6:3).
The answer to the question, "What Must I Do to Be Saved?" is clearly set forth in the words of our saviour. The answer is, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved." The answer is set forth by precept. And the answer is confirmed by example after example. Won't you accept it and be saved?
TRUTH MAGAZINE XIII: 6, p. 15