I have heard family, friends, and co-workers say that all they had to do was pray the Sinner’s Prayer and they were saved. Can you explain the Sinner’s Prayer and tell where one can find it in the Bible?
In a nutshell, the Bible never teaches that one must pray in order to be saved.
When asked, “What shall we do?”, Peter told those seeking salvation on Pentecost to repent and be baptized in order to be forgiven of sins (Acts 2:37-38). Note that he didn’t tell them to pray.
Likewise, Jesus said that faith and baptism save, not prayer (Mark 16:16).
After one obeys the gospel through confessed, heart-felt faith and penitent baptism into the body of Christ (Rom. 10:9-10; Acts 8:35-38; 2:38; Mark 16:16; 1 Cor. 12:13; Eph. 5:23), one must penitently confess their sins to God through prayer in order to receive continual forgiveness (Acts 8:22; 1 John 1:9). However, the command to pray as part of the plan for salvation comes after salvation is initially obtained through faithful, penitent baptism…not before.