“Repent, therefore, and be converted,
that your sins may be blotted out
when the times of refreshing shall come
from the presence of the Lord.”
Conversion is not putting on the badge of Christ in BAPTISM.
Ananias and Sapphira, and Simon Magus were baptized as well as the rest.
How many make a mistake here, deceiving and being deceived;
dreaming that Effectual Grace is necessarily tied
to the external administration of baptism,
so that every baptized person is regenerated ??,
not only sacra-mentally regenerated but really ??
and SPIRITUALLY regenerated ??
THEN PEOPLE IMAGINE that because
they were “regenerated when baptized”,
they need nothing further.
But if this were so, then all that have been baptized
would by necessity be saved,
because the promise of Pardon and Salvation is made
to Conversion and Regeneration (Acts 3:19; Matt 19:28).
And IF conversion and baptism WERE the same,
then men would BE SMART to carry a certificate of their baptism when they died,
and AFTER ‘GOD’ SEEING THIS !
there WOULD BE no doubt ‘HE’ WOULD Admit them into HIS Heaven ???
where no sin is ??????????
In short, IF ???? there is nothing more to Conversion, or Regeneration,
than to be baptized, this will fly directly in the face of that Scripture, Matt 7:13-14,
“Enter in at the Strait Gate: for wide is the gate,
and broad is the way, that leads to destruction,
and many there be which go in thereat:
Because Strait is the Gate, and Narrow is the Way,
which Leads to Life, and few there are that find it.”
as well as multitudes of others.
If this is true that there is nothing more to Conversion,
or Regeneration, than to be baptized, we shall no more say,
‘Strait is the gate, and narrow is the way’
for if all that are baptized are saved,
the door is exceeding wide, and we shall henceforth say,
‘Wide is the gate, and broad is the way that leads unto life.’
If this is true that there is nothing more to Conversion,
or Regeneration, than to be baptized,
thousands may go into Heaven shoulder to shoulder;
and we will no more teach that the righteous are scarcely saved,
or that there is need of such a stir
in taking the kingdom of heaven by violence,
and striving to enter in
(1 Pet 4:18; Matt 11:12; Luke 13:24).
Surely, if the way be so easy as many suppose,
that little more is necessary than to be baptized
and to cry out,
‘Lord, have mercy’,
we need not put ourselves to such seeking, and knocking, and wrestling,
as the Word requires in order to salvation.
Again, if this is true that there is nothing more to Conversion,
or Regeneration, than to be baptized ,
we will no more say,
‘Few there be that find it’;
instead, we will say,
‘Few there be that miss it.’
We will no more say, that of the many that are called,
only ‘few are chosen’ (Matt 22:14),
and that even of the professing Israel
but a remnant shall be saved (Rom 9:27).
If this doctrine that there is nothing more to Conversion,
or Regeneration, than to be baptized, is true,
we shall no more say with the disciples,
will be saved?’
‘Who then will not be saved?’
Then, if a man be baptized, though he is a fornicator,
or a railer or covetous, or a drunkard—
yet he shall inherit the kingdom of God!
(1 Cor 5:11 and 1 Cor 6:9-10).
But some will reply, ‘Such as these,
though they received regenerating grace in baptism,
are since fallen away, and must be renewed again,
or else they cannot be saved.’
1. There is an infallible connection between Regeneration and Salvation,
as we have already shown.
2. Then man must be again born again,
which carries a great deal of absurdity in its face.
We might as well expect men to be twice born in nature
as twice born in grace!
But, 3, and above all, this grants the thing I contend for,
that whatever men do or pretend to receive in baptism,
if they are found afterward to be grossly ignorant, or profane,
or formal, without the power of godliness, they
or else be shut out of the kingdom of God.
So then they must have more to plead for themselves
than this doctrine that there is nothing more to Conversion,
or Regeneration than to be baptized.
Well, in this you see all are agreed, that, whatever it is,
besides getting wet, that is received in baptism,
if men are evidently Unsanctified,
they must be Renewed by a thorough a Powerful Change,
or else they cannot escape the Damnation of Hell.
‘Be not deceived;
God is not mocked.’
Whether it be your baptism, or whatever else you pretend,
I tell you from the living God,
that if any of you be a prayerless person, or a scoffer,
or a lover of an evil company (Prov 13:20),
in a word, if you are not a holy, strict,
and self-denying Christian, you cannot be saved Heb 12:14;
“Follow peace with all men, and holiness,
without which no man will see the Lord”
Follow peace with all men,…. That are in a natural and domestic relation to one another,
being of the same family; and that are in a civil and political one,
being of the same nation, city, or society;
and that are in a spiritual one, being members of the same church;
or, if not, yet being saints, and though in some things different in judgment;
even still, peace is to be followed with enemies, as much as is within us possible;
through Prayer and dependence on the Holy Spirit.
To “follow peace”, signifies an eager pursuit after PEACE,
in the use of proper means;
exerting the utmost of a man’s power to attain it,
in all things possible:
many things serve to enforce this upon the saints;
this is most agreeable to all the three divine Persons;
to God, Who is the God of Peace;
to Christ, the Prince of Peace;
and to the Spirit, One of Whose Fruits is Peace;
and to the characters of the saints,
who are sons of peace,
and who are called to peace,
and who make a profession of the Gospel of Peace;
and to the privileges of Peace they enjoy,
being interested in the Covenant of Peace,
who are partaking of Spiritual Peace now,
and being entitled to Eternal Peace hereafter:
Peace is One of the Names of God.
And Holiness: there is a Perfection of Holiness in Jesus Christ;
and Holiness is to be obtained, by going to Christ for more Grace,
and exercising Faith on Him, as our Sanctification;
and by eager desires that the Spirit of God would Sanctify us more and more,
and Enable us, by His Grace and Strength,
to walk in the way of Holiness,
until the day we are safe to Heaven:
“without which no man will see the Lord;
that is, no man will see a Vision of the Beauty Waiting in Heaven:
or the Lord Jesus Christ, “our Lord”,
Even in this life, as Born Again children of God have Communion with Jesus Christ;
and hereafter, in Heaven, we will behold His Glory,
both intellectually and corporeally:
THE SIGHT of HOLINESS is Necessary;
God is Holy,
and JESUS Christ is Holy,
THE HOLY SPIRIT is HOLY.
Just as here; so ARE GOD, The Son and Holy Ghost in Heaven,
So are the Angels, in Heaven.
The Angels in Heaven are Holy.
And so are the souls of men in Heaven.
& Matthew 15:14;
“Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind.
And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.”
Let them alone,…. Have nothing to say, or do with them;
do not mind their anger and resentment,
their reproaches and reflections,
nor trouble yourselves at the offence they have taken;
if they will go, let them go;
they are a worthless generation of men,
who are not to be regarded, hearkened to, nor to be pleased;
it matters not what they say of me, and of my doctrine:
they be blind leaders of the blind;
the people that hearken to them, and are followers of them, are “blind”,
as to any true sense of themselves, their state, and condition by nature,
as hellbound sinners before God;
They are “blind” as to any spiritual, saving knowledge of God;
They are “blind” as to any acquaintance with the Messiah,
and the method of Salvation by Him;
They are “blind” as to the Spirit of God, and the Work of Grace,
Regeneration, and Sanctification upon the soul;
They are “blind” as to the Scriptures of Truth,
and Doctrines of the Gospel.
And their “leaders” of them are as “blind” as they are:
by whom are meant the Scribes and Pharisees,
the learned doctors and rabbis of the Jewish nation;
who thought themselves very wise and knowing,
yet they were blind also; and none more than they.
This was predicted, in Isaiah 42:19;
“Who is blind, but my servant?
or deaf, as my messenger that I sent?
who is blind as he that is perfect,
and blind as the LORD’S servant?”
All such leaders and teachers are blind, who
, notwithstanding their natural abilities, and acquired parts,
are in a state of Unregeneracy;
including those who teach this doctrine
that there is nothing more to Conversion, or Regeneration, than to be baptized.
All such leaders and teachers are blind,
in a state of Unregeneracy,
and know and have nothing more than what they have from nature,
or have attained to at school;
and as apparently all such are, who lead men from Jesus Christ,
to the mere appearance of morality,
and to a dependence upon their own righteousness for justification,
which was the darling principle of the blind leaders in the text.
And if the blind lead the blind,
both shall fall into the ditch;
This is The Ditch of ignorance and eternally fatal error.
This is The Ditch of immorality and profaneness,
This is The Ditch of distress, if not despair, temporal ruin and destruction;
This is The Ditch which was notoriously verified
in the VERY ‘RELIGIOUS’ Jewish people, and their guides.
THIS is the DITCH 0f ETERNAL DAMNATION,
the LAKE which BURNS with FIRE and BRIMSTONE;
WHAT ELSE CAN BE EXPECTED ?
That there is nothing more to Conversion,
or Regeneration, than to be baptized ?
No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No.
That is ‘a Lie’.