“Repent because your sins have been forgiven” and “Be baptized because your sins have been forgiven”

Certain religious groups insist that water baptism is not essential to a person’s remission of sins. They insist that at the point of  faith, a person is forgiven of his sins. They don’t like the translation of Acts 2:38 in the New King James Version, King James Version, New Living Translation, American Standard Version, Revised Standard Version which says “Repent and be baptized for the remission of yours sins.”

They insist that the Greek preposition eis should be translated “because of” so that Acts 2:38 should read, “Repent and be baptized because your sins have been forgiven.”

The shortest way of revealing the weakness of the above position is to focus the interrogation on the word “repent.” So the question should be worded like this:

The verb repent is similarly situated as the verb be baptized in relation to remission of sins, do you also teach that remission of sins or forgiveness of sins happens first before the act of repentance? Where in the Bible do we find that repentance is not a prerequisite to forgiveness and not essential to salvation?

Sa Filipino ganito ang pagtatanong: “Ang pandiwang magsisi ay pareho ang lokasyon kagaya ng pandiwang mabautismuhan sa kanilang relasyon sa phrase na “sa ikapagpapatawad ng mga kasalanan” itinuturo mo rin ba na ang kapatawaran ay unang mangyayari bago ang pagsisisi? Saang bahagi ng Biblia itinuturo na ang kapatawaran ay nauuna kaysa pagsisisi?”

Kung ang pagsisisi ay nauuna at ibubunga ang kapatawaran, anong dahilan sa regla ng balarila bakit hindi pareho sa pagbabautismo? Kung sasabihin mo na magiging “salvation by work” na kung kailangan ang bautismo, bakit hindi mo rin sasabihin na “salvation by work” kung kailangan ang pagsisisi? Pareho naman silang gagawin ng taong may pananalig?

If you have any questions or comments on this short  article, we would be glad to get your email. – E.Tanicala

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