Summary: To establish that the Corinthian’s conversion was consistent with the “pattern of conversions” outlined in the Book of Acts. Their conversion experience included hearing the gospel, believing it and being baptized.
1. The Corinthian’s Heard
2. The Corinthian’s Believed
3. The Corinthian’s Baptized
1. In our lesson today we will be discussing the Corinthian’s Conversion. It will become clear as a result of this lesson that their conversion experience followed the same “pattern of conversions” as outline in the Book of Acts. This “pattern of conversion” which included hearing the gospel, believing it and being baptized, is consistent to the commandments Jesus outlined in His “Great Commission.”
2. First, we will discuss the Corinthian’s hearing the preaching of the apostle Paul. This begs the question, “what did the Corinthians hear?” What entailed the substance of the preaching of Paul? Luke writes: “And he reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks. And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ,” Acts 18:4-5. Paul preached Jesus as the Son of God and the promised messiah – Christ.
3. Second, we will describe the Corinthian’s belief of the gospel. Luke writes: “And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with his entire house,” Acts 18:8. Crispus, the chief rule of the synagogue after hearing of the preaching of Christ, believed on the Lord Jesus with his entire house. However, not all believed the preaching of Paul regarding Christ. Some disbelieved his message. Notice: "And when they (Jews) opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean: from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles, And he departed thence, and entered into a certain man's house, named Justus, one that worshipped God, whose house joined hard to the synagogue,” Acts 18:4-7.
4. Lastly, we will notice the Corinthian’s baptism as a result of the preaching of the gospel of Christ. The response to the preaching of Christ and the gospel to the believer is an obedient faith and baptism for the remission of sins. The Corinthians after hearing the gospel or the word of God, "believed and were baptized,” Acts 18:8. Paul like Peter, Philip and other ministers of the gospel, preached “faith and baptism” as Christ directed, in the “Great Commission.” Notice: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen,” Matthew 28:19-20.
BODY OF LESSON
I THE CORINTHIAN’S HEARD
A. The preaching of Paul. Luke writes: “And he (Paul) reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks. And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ,” Acts 18:4-5. Some believed the preaching of Paul regarding Jesus as Christ. Others rejected his preaching and he turned to the Gentiles. We will experience this same rejection today as a result of our preaching Christ.
B. The encouragement of the Lord. Luke states: “Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city. And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them,” Acts 18:9-11. The instruction and promise of the Lord to Paul:
1. “Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace.”
2. “For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee.”
3. “For I have much people in this city.”
4. “Paul continued a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.”
C. The preaching of Christ. Luke writes of Paul’s preaching of Christ. Notice:
1. He is the Son of God: “And straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God. But all that heard him were amazed, and said; is not this he that destroyed them which called on this name in Jerusalem, and came hither for that intent, that he might bring them bound unto the chief priests? But Saul increased the more in strength, and confounded the Jews which dwelt at Damascus, proving that this is very Christ,” Acts 9:20-22. While Paul was in Damascus and Jerusalem he preached Christ as the Son of God.
2. He is the Christ: “And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ,” Acts 18:5. Paul while in Macedonia preached Christ as the messiah.