5 And he saved us, not by works of justice that we had done, but, in accord with his mercy, by the washing of regeneration and by the renovation of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he has poured out upon us in abundance, through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by his grace, we may become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
Evan: Verse 5 says that He saved us by grace, not because of our good works.
Cait: Yes. But notice that he’s talking in the past tense, about our initial salvation, which Catholics agree is a pure gift of grace apart from anything we do. Also note that this initial salvation comes “by the washing of regeneration and renovation of the Holy Spirit,” in other words, by baptism, the washing that saving us (1 Peter 3:21, Acts 22:16). There’s also a likely connection here to Jesus’ words concerning “water and the Holy Spirit” (John 3:5).