To know where one is saved and when one is saved is to know how one is
saved. One cannot, therefore, know how to be saved unless it is known where and when he
God is our Saviour (Titus 3:4) as all will agree. But where does He save. Paul says, "...that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus" (2 Timothy 2:10). In Christ is where God saves. It logically follows, then, that all who are outside of Christ are lost.
Now, since we have determined from God's word where men are saved, it must also follow that one cannot be saved until he enters that place — Christ — where God saves. Now, to know how to enter into Christ is to know how to be saved. Men often say one is saved before he believes, and cannot believe until he is saved. If that were true, man would enter Christ before he believes since salvation is in Christ.
But God's word says, "For with the heart man believeth unto — not because of — righteousness" (Romans 10:10), and the "righteousness of God in him (Christ)" (2 Corinthians 5:21). Therefore, man must believe with his heart unto, or in order to enter Christ and be saved.
Others say salvation comes by "faith only" — that the moment a man believes, he is saved. Now, since salvation is in Christ, that would mean a man enters Christ the moment he believes. That is also false. If it were true, the devils would be in Christ, for they "believe and tremble" (James 2:19). The doctrine of salvation by "faith alone" never has and never will put one into Christ. The only time "faith only" is mentioned in the New Testament is when James declares that salvation is "not by faith only" (James 2:24). James also says that, "faith without works is dead" (James 2:20).
One must, by faith, repent or perish (Luke 13:3). Acts 11:18 tells us that repentance is "unto life," and John writes that, "this life is in His (God's) Son" (1 John 5:11). Repentance, then, is unto — in the direction of, toward — not "because of."
To be saved requires the believing man to confess that Jesus is God's Son, and Paul wrote that, "With the mouth confession is made unto salvation" (Romans 10:10). What is that confession? It's the same one the Ethiopian eunuch made in Acts 8:37: "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God." Notice, the eunuch did not say, "I feel that God for Christ's sake has pardoned my sins." The Ethiopian's confession was unto — not because of — salvation.
Then, when one repents unto and confesses unto salvation, he can then be baptized into Christ where salvation is found. Neither belief nor confession puts one into Christ. Baptism does that. "For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ" (Galations 3:27)
When one enters Christ is when one is saved. Since Galatians 3:27 says one enters Christ by being baptized, and if one is saved when he enters Christ, it follows that men are saved when they are baptized.
"And without shedding of blood is no remission" (Hebrews 9:22). "In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace" (Ephesians 1:7). This tells us that redemption — the forgiveness of sins, salvation — is in Christ and is through His blood. When we are baptized into His death, we receive the benefits of His blood, and there is no benefit of that blood outside of Christ.
Christ is the "Saviour of the body" (Eph. 5:23). Therefore, to be saved, one must be in that body. But what is "the body" spoken of in Ephesians 5:23? Paul answers that question five chapters earlier. "...and gave him (Christ) to be the head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all" (Ephesians 1:22-23). The body is Christ's church and it is that church which He will save. One is saved when he is baptized into — where — Christ.