Shelby G. Floyd
How does one go about presenting Christ to the unbelievers? What do we teach them about Christ that they might be saved from their sins? Fortunately, we are not left to our own devices. As in all things the Bible gives us the commands and the examples of how those commands were carried out. The same plan is applicable today and continues until Christ comes again. Let us notice that the gospel preachers and teachers began with the scriptures and not human dogmas and human creeds.
He Began at the Same Scripture
In Acts of Apostles the Bible says that Phillip began at the same scripture and preached Jesus unto the Ethiopian nobleman (Acts 8:35). The place where the nobleman was reading was Isaiah 53:7-8:
He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, And as a sheep before its shearers is silent, So He opened not His mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment, And who will declare His generation? For He was cut off from the land of the living; For the transgressions of My people He was stricken (NKJV).
The Subject of Water Baptism
This is a very plain reference to the suffering and death of Christ. From this point Phillip brought up the subject of conversion according to the Great Commission and the subject of baptism:
Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, “See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?” Then Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him. Now when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught Philip away, so that the eunuch saw him no more; and he went on his way rejoicing (Acts 8:36-39 NKJV).
Preaching Baptism is Preaching Christ
It is obvious that baptism for the remission of sins is a part of preaching Christ to the people. Baptism is also a condition of salvation according to the Great Commission. We have four independent accounts of the last charge Jesus gave his apostles and through them to us:
Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.
“Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.”
The Gospel Plan is in Effect
This in a nutshell is how apostolic preachers presented the Christ to the unbelievers. This plan has not been repealed and is still in effect today. Let us be about the task.
Copyright © 2014 Shelby Floyd All Rights Reserved
Shelby G. Floyd