Ask the Preacher
Sender: Dear Brother in Christ, I am teaching a Bible class regarding
Apollos being explained the way of God more accurately (Acts 18:26), and
chapter 19 wherein the 12 disciples were re-baptized. My question: since in
John 3:26ff people were being baptized by Christ's disciples, would these same
people have to be re-baptized later on because of Christ's death, buriel, and
resurrection, i.e., Acts 2:38?
.One thing you need to keep in mind is that Christian baptism is based on faith in a crucified and risen Lord. Romans 6 gives a good exposition of Christian baptism and its significance when it comes to the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. The book of Colossians also gives an exposition of baptism, which involves being "raised up with Christ."
This is the reason why the disciples in Acts 19 were re-baptized. Their first baptism couldn't have been Christian baptism because they had not even heard about the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. They needed to place their faith in Christ's atoning work on the cross and believe that God raised him from the death, which they had not done. Therefore, the baptism they received was not really "Christian" baptism.
Though the text does not state whether Apostles were baptized after the resurrection, it is not unreasonable to assume that they did. Perhaps the text does not deal with it because it is not a question that is pertinent to us today since this is not an issue that would have affected anyone beyond that first generation of Christians. It is an interesting question though.
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