Whatever one mumbles it still says what Jesus COMMANDED and PROMISED BAPTISM SAVES YOU
Dr. Charles J. Ellicott observes that this is "an expression which has caused almost as much difficulty as any in the New Testament" [Ellicott's Commentary on the Whole Bible, vol. 8, p. 422].
"As the passage of Israel through the Red Sea is described as a baptism (1 Corinthians 10:2) because it marked their transition from the state of bondage to a new national life, and left their enemies destroyed in the water, so Noe’s safe passage through the Flood is a type of baptism, because it was a regeneration of humanity, it was a destruction of the carnal, sensual element (Genesis 6:3. “he also is flesh”), it washed the human race from its pollutions, and man rose to a new and more spiritual existence for the time being, with the bow for a sign of a perpetual covenant made.
So baptism is a destruction and death to the flesh, but a new life to the spirit. It must be observed how carefully St. Peter expresses the permanent effect of baptism by the present tense “saveth:” not “saved you,” nor “hath saved you;” it is a living and ever present fact, the “everlasting benediction of His heavenly washing;” it washes the neophyte not from past sins ONLY, but from those which he afterwards commits, if only he still repents and believes.
4) There is, however, another version for which a still better case can be made out: viz., “demand.” It is true that the verb eperôtân more frequently means “to ask” a question than “to ask” a boon, expecting a verbal response rather than a practical one; but it is once used in the New Testament in the latter sense (Matthew 16:1), and in the Old Testament also (as Psalms 137:3). And the only other instance of the word eperôtêma in inspired literature makes for this view. This occurs in Daniel 4:17, where the English has “demand,” and the Latin petitio.
Matt. 16:1 The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven.
Dan. 4:17 This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men.
The last seems both the clearest in itself, the best antithesis to the balancing clause, and the most in keeping with the context. It will then be: “Noah’s flood, in antitype, to this day saves you—that is to say, baptism, which is no cleansing of the skin from dirt, but an application to God for a clear conscience.” A “good conscience,” in this case, will not mean an honest frame of mind, but a consciousness of having nothing against you, such as would come to even the chief of sinners from the baptismal remission of sins. “
“With this,” he says, “you cannot be harmed; with this, you will be always ready to defend the faith when called to account. It was because He had this that Christ was able to atone for you and bring you to God, and to conduct His mission to the dead, and to give by His resurrection an efficacy to your baptism; and that baptism itself only saves you by the fact that in it you ask and receive the cleansing of the conscience
You keep fighting God by insisting that I DO NOT HAVE TO ASK FOR THE FREE GIFT.
What doth trouble thee that thou cannot abide with THAT WHICH IS WRITTEN FOR OUR LEARNING. The Scribes also rejected God's charge against them be dismissed by BAPTISM: they REJECTED God's counsel or WILL and said in effect, YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE SAYING. THAT'S OK: ONCE YOU HAVE BLASPHEMED YOU ARE FREE TO REPEAT IT UNTIL YOU FEEL THE HEAD FOR CALLING THE SPIRIT AND JESUS LIARS.