Sermon Text: Acts 18:23-19:10
Summary: The Ministry of Apollos in Ephesus and the Follow Up Ministry of Priscilla & Aquila, and Paul
In Ephesus, Apollos teaches about Jesus based on the knowledge of the baptism of John the Baptist. Priscilla & Aquila teach Apollos a more complete knowledge of Jesus. When Paul comes to Ephesus he finds some disciples according to John's baptism and makes of them disciples of Jesus.
1. Apollos was competent in the Scriptures, instructed in the way of The Lord. He taught accurately the things concerning Jesus and spoke boldly about it in the synagogue. So why did Priscilla & Aquila need to explain to him the word of God more accurately, when he was teaching about Jesus accurately (see 18:24-26)? Why do we who are Christians need to continually have the word of God explained, preached and taught to us?
2. When Paul comes to Ephesus, he finds some disciples who had been baptized in the baptism of John the Baptist, probably having been taught and baptized by Apollos before he was further taught about Jesus by Priscilla & Aquila (see 19:1-4). How do we know these disciples were not disciples of Jesus Christ?
3. When did these disciples of John the Baptist become disciples of Jesus (see 19:4-7)?
4. These men, about a dozen in number, heard from Paul about Jesus to Whom John the Baptist pointed, and then they were baptized in the name of Jesus, indicating they had truly repented and believed (see 19:4-7). So why did The Holy Spirit not come upon them and baptize them when they believed, as usual in the New Testament? Why did they prophesy and speak in tongues?
5. As we can see throughout the Book of Acts in particular, sometimes when people come to Christ in new places or unusual circumstances, things may happen in unusual ways. Sometimes such new Christians spoke in languages they did not know, prophesied and told forth God's Word, or were healed. In these cases signs may have been needed to encourage them that though their situations and how they became Christians were unusual they were no less real. Christians in such cases may also have needed encouragement that these conversions were for real. In our culture many are skeptical of Christianity and many others tell themselves they are Christians when they are not. Could it be that even our neighbors may need for God to do unusual things in them, maybe through us, in order that they may come to Christ? Are we willing to believe God for this if this is how He chooses to work, so that our neighbors may be saved, that they and we may be encouraged, and that God may be glorified?