Acts and the Apostles: Activated, Authorized, Audible, and Accountable

May 21, 2009 at 12:47 pm | Posted in A Little Alliteration, Acts | 25 Comments
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Acts 2:38 reads: “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”

Does this mean you have to be baptized to in order to be saved? The answer is “no.” “For,” in this verse, means “on account of” or “on the basis of.” Christians are to be baptized on account of their sins having been remitted, or, on the basis of the remission of their sins.

We have a similar thing in modern English. I might say, “I wore this jacket for the cold weather.” Did my wearing the jacket make it cold? Did wearing the jacket stop it from being cold? If I forget the jacket, does that mean I am really warm? No, my wearing of the jacket for the cold just acknowledges that I realized it was already cold.

For the first Christian believers, baptism was a testimonial proof of what already happened in their hearts. It was more of a “get to” than a “have to.”

In Acts Chapter 2 the early Church was faced with the remarkable predicament of 3000 new believers who needed to be discipled. As we looked for patterns in the text of Acts, we previously saw the role of women in the early days of the Church. Here is another pattern that can be identified: the tendency to do things on a daily basis.

And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,

Acts 2:46 (emphasis added)

They met more than once a week.

Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.

Acts 2:47 (emphasis added)

They went soul-winning daily.

And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.

Acts 6:1 (emphasis added)

They cared for needs of people daily.

And so were the churches stablished in the faith, and increased in number daily.

Acts 16:5 (emphasis added)

They grew daily.

These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

Acts 17:11 (emphasis added)

They studied their Bibles daily.

Another central theme in the early chapters of Acts (especially Chapters 3 and 4) is the emphasis on Jesus Christ’s NAME.

Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.

Acts 3:6 (emphasis added)

And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.

Acts 3:16 (emphasis added)

And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this?

Acts 4:7 (emphasis added)

Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.

Acts 4:10 (emphasis added)

Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Acts 4:12 (emphasis added)

But that it spread no further among the people, let us straitly threaten them, that they speak henceforth to no man in this name.

Acts 4:17 (emphasis added)

And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus.

Acts 4:18 (emphasis added)

By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus.

Acts 4:30 (emphasis added)

There can be no denying that the early Church was zealous that the Name of Jesus Christ be magnified and glorified!

It seems that the more they used His Name, the more the Gospel spread, and the more opposition they faced.

Chapter 2 describes the inauguration of the Church – and this caused somewhat of a public stir. Some people at least must have been impressed. Contrast Chapter 3, which shows the day to day ministering that only God and His workers see.

In Chapter 2, Peter preaches to thousands. In Chapter 3, Peter preaches to one lame man.

In Chapter 2, the ministry brings celebration and blessings. In Chapter 3, the ministry brings persecution and arrest.

No one can accuse these early Church leaders of greed or pandering for popularity. When Peter talked to the lame man, he said “silver and gold have I none.” Today, most so-called faith healers can not say the same: silver and gold have they plenty.

Instead of silver and gold, the Apostles had the name of Jesus Christ, and the authority and the power of that name.


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  1. Hey, I just found your site and I love it. Thanks for the time you put in it. It really gives me food for thought.
    In Him,

  2. Thank you, Ms. Danna. You are a great blessing to the body of Christ.

  3. I like the sight. Just would encourage you to study the Jewish teachings on Baptism and all the teachigns on baptism in the NT. before changing what Acts 2:38 states.


  4. Thank you, M, for seeing the sight of my site. I will continue to study baptism in the New Testament, but I have not changed what Acts 2:38 states. I copied and pasted it straight from the King James Bible.

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  9. […] is important for the health of the body, and for unity – being of one mind – in one accord. If you are a member of a local body of believers, don’t be a Willow-Creek, […]

  10. […] up with nowhere to go.” But, perhaps, in God’s eyes we would appear as one big unified body, ready to go wherever God sent us, ruled by His peace, doing His will, and seeking His glory. (Colossians 3:13-15) Possibly related […]

  11. […] the folks in Acts 2:41 saved because the Apostles demanded them to do […]

  12. […] who can’t change his spots or the person who can’t change his nature by washing in water, baptism can’t change our sin nature. But something else can. What can wash away our sins? Nothing but the blood of Jesus. Would you be […]

  13. […] then the circumcision was received as a sign and an outward seal. That’s how the ordinance of baptism is supposed to work for New Testament Christians. It does not save us, but it is a sign that marks […]

  14. […] does not save anyone. The requirement for being baptized is the requirement of first being saved. The requirement for being baptized is believing in your heart that Jesus Christ is your Lord and […]

  15. […] Another interesting concept in Acts is the concept of power. We see the power of God manifested in special ways in the Book of Acts. We see it in the Word of God; in prayer; in love; in fellowship; in persecution; and in witnessing. […]

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  19. […] Acts 2:41-42 […]

  20. […] Acts 2:38-42 (emphasis added) […]

  21. […] did not preach that baptism […]

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  24. […] God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be […]

  25. […] in our day, but very familiar in Jesus’s day, to common people and powerful people alike. Peter used this same theme, in a way, when he used the image of a building foundation/cornerstorne to […]

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