Yes, I’m Saved By Works!
It is not uncommon when discussing the subject of baptism and how it is essential to salvation to be accused of teaching salvation by works. Well, I have determined to come out of the closet and no longer deny this truth. This may come as a shock to many that I would admit to being saved by works. However, if I am to stand for truth, teach truth and practice truth, I must admit to having been saved by works.
In Colossians 2:12-13, we read: “having been buried with Him in baptism, which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. And when you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions.”
This inspired passage makes it quite clear that baptism is a work and that it is directly involved in our salvation. Baptism is significant, not because of what man does, but because of what God promised to do when man is baptized.
A few years ago, I had extensive sinus surgery. I was having difficulty breathing and a never-ending sinus infection. The morning of the surgery I was wheeled into the operating room and was asked by the doctor to get out of the wheelchair and climb onto the operating table. A few days later I returned to the doctor and had the packing removed. The most amazing thing happened – I took a huge, unimpeded breath! I was able to take in so much oxygen with a single breath that I got a bit dizzy. It was truly wonderful to breathe again! My wife even said I snored less, at least for a little while.
How was it that I had come to breathe more easily and snore less? Was it because of what I had done? Did my getting out of the wheelchair and climbing onto the operating table solve my lingering sinus problem? Of course not! But, could I have solved my problem if I had not gotten out of the wheel chair and climbed onto the operating table? Had I chosen to sit there or walk out of the operating room, I would have left with my sinus problem intact. My sinus trouble was cured because of what the doctor did while I was on the operating table, not because of what I did.
The same truth is being taught in Colossians 2:12-13. Baptism is essential to our salvation, not because of what we do, but because of what God promises to do when we “climb onto His operating table.” When we climb onto God’s operating table, God promises to cut away our sin with its guilt and raise us up alive in Christ. It is God’s work when one is baptized that is significant. It is His work, not ours.
When a person is motivated by faith to be baptized into Jesus, he is saved by works – God’s works! God removes the sin. God makes him alive again. God raises him up in His Son Jesus.
Yes, I am saved by works – God’s works!