Baptism is the Gospel

You can sum up the view of baptism held by some Christians in the following argument: Only believing in gospel of Jesus Christ can save you. Baptism is not the gospel. Therefore baptism does not save you.

Initially that might sound like a pretty iron clad argument. But is it really? Let’s think about that. It’s true that only believing in the gospel of Jesus Christ saves you. Nothing else has the power to save you. But what about the next part of the argument –“Baptism is not the gospel” is that true? Is baptism some other thing distinct from the gospel? Let me point out the following Biblical passage:

Do you not know that all us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.

-Romans 6:3&4

This passage gives baptism the power of connecting a person to the death and resurrection of Christ. The person who is connected to the death and resurrection then in this manner by faith certainly also receives all the benefits of Christ’s death and resurrection. So baptism sounds a lot like the gospel.

The reason why baptism sounds so much like the gospel is because it is, in fact, the gospel. Baptism is the gospel communicated to us not only with words but also with water. Since baptism is the gospel of Jesus Christ, then baptism saves the person who believes in it.