In trying to decide if baptism is essential to salvation, have you ever thought about the connection of conscience and baptism? Hebrews 9:14 says, “How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” The blood of Christ cleans the conscience according to this passage.
Furthermore, Hebrews 10:22 says, “Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.” The Hebrew writer connects having the heart sprinkled with our bodies being washed with water — clearly a reference to baptism.
Finally, 1 Peter 3:21 says, “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” Connecting it all together, our consciences are clean by the administration of baptism, which connects us to the blood of Christ. Baptism is essential!