Shelby G. Floyd
Paul devoted himself exclusively to preaching and testifying that Jesus was the Christ (Acts 18:5). While Paul was at Corinth on his second evangelistic journey, “many of the Corinthians who heard him believed and were baptized” (Acts 18:8). This account of the conversion of the Corinthians is in harmony with all the other conversions in Acts of apostles.
Belief Plus Baptism Equals Salvation
Before Jesus left the earth, his last instructions to the apostles were to “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:15-16). The word of God declares that belief plus baptism equals salvation. False religion says belief minus baptism equals salvation. Who has the right math? And who are you going to believe–the Bible or man?
Baptized into the Name of Christ
Later when Paul wrote a letter to the Corinthian church, he stated that he was thankful he had not personally baptized a great number of people. This was because he did not want anybody to say that he had baptized them into his name:
“Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized into the name of Paul? I am thankful that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, so no one can say that you were baptized into my name. (Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don’t remember if I baptized anyone else.) For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power” (1 Corinthians 1:13-17).
We are to be baptized into the name of Christ and therefore we can be called Christians (Acts 11:26), and honor him who died for 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” (Mt. 28:18-20).
Like the Corinthian converts, all today who hear, believe, repent and are baptized, will find forgiveness of sin and the hope of everlasting life. All blessings in heavenly places are found in Christ (Ephesians 1:3).
Copyright © 2014 Shelby Floyd All Rights Reserved
Shelby G. Floyd
Heartland Church of Christ
1693 West Main Street
Greenwood, Indiana 46142