Bible Question:

I came across a pretty significant mistake you have on the page titled Is Baptism Required For Salvation? You state,

Bible Answer:

The difference between my statement and the King James Version (KJV) and New International Version (NIV) translations is found in the original Greek language. Here is the New American Standard Bible translation of John 4:1-2 for comparison,

Therefore when the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John (although Jesus Himself was not baptizing, but His disciples were) . . . (NASB) John 4:1-2

The Greek phrase that is translated as “Jesus Himself was not baptizing” is IESOUS AUTO OUK EBAPTIZEN. The solution to your question is found in the verb phrase “was not baptizing” or “OUK EBAPTIZEN.” The verb is in the imperfect tense. The tense implies that Jesus was not repeatedly baptizing people. That is, He was not doing all of the baptizing. The well-known Greek scholar A. T. Robertson when commenting about this passage said the following,

The “Imperfect tense means that it was not the habit of Jesus.”


John 4:1-2 reveals that Jesus did only some of the baptizing but His disciples did most of it.



1. A.T. Robertson. Word Pictures in the New Testament. Baker Book House. Grand Rapids, MI. 1960. p. 59.

Reference Links:

Is Baptism Required For Salvation?
John's Last Testimony