Yes, in many Protestant denominations, especially Southern Baptist, reciting a sinner’s prayer is what is taught in Sunday School and encouraged at revivals. Therefore, it is doctrinal. I’ve been in many a room where the Pastor led someone in reciting it. There’s even an ABC formula:
A = Admit your a sinner
B = Believe that Jesus is God’s Son
C = Confess and your sins
So, the prayer goes something like this in Sunday School, “God, I admit that I am a sinner in need of a savior. I believe that Jesus is Your Son who died in my place. I confess my sins and turn away from them. Thank you for saving me. Amen.” Voila! You’re saved!
Nevermind that this prayer is not in the Bible, which they claim is the only rule of faith :rolleyes: That’s why I mentioned SS.
While there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with that prayer, I certainly don’t believe it’s sufficient, especially for someone who lacks proper catechesis.
I, personally, never thought of baptism as a “commitment”, but instead a gift of grace, which is why Lutherans and Catholics and others baptize infants.
Yes, you’re right, it is a grace, but we still have to submit to it. Many, many, many evangelical Christians don’t believe in the necessity of baptism. My dad, for instance, believes he can watch a Billy Graham crusade or Joel Osteen from the comfort of his Lazy Boy, recite some prayer, be saved, and go about his merry way never putting a foot in the door of a church building. :shrug: