The one who believes and is baptized will be saved, but the one who does not believe will be condemned.” Mark 16:16 NET https://bible.com/bible/107/mrk.16.16.NET
Is baptism necessary for salvation? No. This verse seems to indicate otherwise. All of Scripture must be used to interpret any single part of Scripture. Out of context, anything we say or God says can be misconstrued to say and mean anything. So what is being told to us in this verse? We must believe in the work of God accomplished through Jesus the Savior. This is the gospel. What is that work? It is the work of God living a perfect life to die as a perfect sacrifice as the punishment for all humanity who come to Him in repentance and faith that He is indeed God the Savior. We must believe that we are separated from God at birth. The obviousness of this should be overwhelming to us. This separation is the result of sin, disobedience to God, which we demonstrate daily in some manner of thought, word, and deed. The consequence of our failure to live as God designed us is the condemnation from God to live forever in suffering and torment. But God so loved the world He came and gave Himself as the punishment we deserve to pardon for sin all those who come to Him for reconciliation with God. Those who believe this story, this reality that God made us for His glory, but our sins separate us, yet He took our place as punishment to give us a place with Him in eternity, are made children of God. The mark of our belief is our public confession of this belief at baptism. We cannot be ashamed of our God or His work for us; instead, we proclaim His work for us by acknowledging that work we call baptism. Baptism is that formal event where we acknowledge our God before His people and commit to living with Him by His grace and the power of His Holy Spirit. Who resides in all those who believe in Him and have been reconciled to Him through Him, Jesus the Savior. We are baptized to prove we are saved.