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1 Peter 3:21



21 The like figure [antitupos] whereunto [hos] even baptism [baptisma] doth [sozo] also [kai] now [nun] save [sozo] us [hemas] (not [ou] the putting away [apothesis] of the filth [rhupos] of the flesh [sarx], but [alla] the answer [eperotema] of a good [agathos] conscience [suneidesis] toward [eis] God [theos],) by [dia] the resurrection [anastasis] of Jesus [Iesous] Christ [Christos]: KJV-Interlinear



21 And corresponding to that, baptism now saves you not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, NASB



This is one of the most confusing verses in the Bible, as most folks look at the baptism aspects rather than the cause or purpose of the baptism.


The verse begins clearly with the statement that this is a figure, a representation, a symbolism, an anti-type of a type, an example or illustration of the real thing. The real thing being salvation.


Remember that the Bible is a long series of parables.Filled with symbolisms and representations of real life experiences that teach spiritual phenomena.


The baptism is an immersion or the complete covering of a thing (your life) in such a manner as to wash away, or wipe away, or identify with, a greater reality (salvation).


Christ s work on the Cross is the actual work of salvation. When a person believes in Christ, the Holy Spirit regenerates within the person, a human spirit, which is a vessel (the third vessel component of the person), and into which eternal life is inserted. This makes the person trichotomous (body, soul, and spirit).Unbelievers are body and soul only or dichotomous.


Using the flood of Noah, Peter illustrates the suffering Noah and his family endured when surrounded by extreme evil.That was the state of his world then, and is representative of the state of the current world now, and always has been.


They were not delivered by the water, not delivered by the ark, but delivered by means of their good conscience, which means that they believed in God, His instructions, and were obedient to His commands.And in this case, they were to build an ark.


Without the ark, they would have died in the water, along with everyone else. The water was the agent of judgment. The ark was not submerged in the water, but road up and above the water.It was the agent of deliverance.Neither Noah nor any member of his family were made wet (from the judgment), but were kept dry (in fellowship), within the confines of the ark (Gods protection). And their whole picture of this series of events, points to their faith and trust and obedience in God. For without that, they would have nothing.


Baptism is a washing.It is depicted as the washing away of filth and dirt and stench off of the external body. But washing the body in water is not salvation and it saves nothing. This is representative of the washing of the soul in salvation.The Holy Spirit s baptism is the actual and real baptism, which washes away the stench of sin, from the persons soul.


In salvation, the individual is washed and immediately placed in fellowship. But then we do not go to heaven immediately. We still have to live our life, and grow up in our spiritual life.And as we are still confined to our physical bodies, which are riddled with the sin nature, we must cleanse regularly (confession), in order to maintain our spiritual cleanliness (fellowship) throughout our daily life.


All of this we do in obedience to Gods mandate for obtaining and keeping a relationship with Him.


The good conscience is the maintained soul.Maintained with the proper foods (Bible doctrine) and the proper care (confession). A proper diet (doctrine) and the proper exercise (application of doctrine to ones daily life), make for proper and healthy growth in ones spiritual life.


The rituals of life, do not save.The daily shower, the weekly or monthly sprinkle of water, do not save, or even contribute in any way to ones spiritual life.


The only thing that saves is faith in Christ. And in this, faith has only to be expressed one time in ones life.Once you believe you cannot undo, that belief.


The only thing that promotes growth and health, is obedience to Gods commands.


The answer, eperotema, (Gods answer), to faith (your good conscience response), is salvation.


The answer, eperotema, (Gods answer), to obedience in your spiritual life (your good conscience response), is spiritual growth to maturity.


The Holy Spirit is the agent of both of these accomplishments. Jesus Christ, is the source of both of these accomplishments.

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Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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