I have been studying a lot as my wife and I have been meeting with a pair of Mormon Missionaries. One of the things that has caught my attention is their belief that baptism is necessary for Salvation.
I am not trying to downplay baptism, but I cannot find in Scripture where it is mandated before one can get to Heaven.
The Mormon belief comes from John 3:5 where Jesus says you must be born of water, and of the Spirit.
It is easy to see how this could be misunderstood to mean baptism when you take the verse out of context. However, when we look at the before, and the after on the context of this verse we see clearly that it is not talking about baptism, but rather, our human, physical birth.
John 3:4 shows Nicodemus asking how can a man be born again when he is old, can he return into his mother’s womb? The next verse Jesus responds with water, and spirit. One must assume that Christ was answering the question about physical birth with the term “water.”
In the next verse following Jesus statement, John 3:6, he then talks about flesh being born of flesh, and Spirit being born of Spirit. Once again we see the reference to a physical birth.
When we examine the context of the Scripture we clearly see that Christ is not talking about baptism as a requirement for Salvation, He was merely painting a picture of the differences between our natural and spiritual births.