Water Baptism Ministry

1 Cor 1:14-17

My brothers and sisters, some from Chloe’s household have informed me that there are quarrels among you. What I mean is this: One of you says, “I follow Paul”; another, “I follow Apollos”; another, “I follow Cephas”; still another, “I follow Christ.” Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, so no one can say that you were baptized in 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…

Like St Paul, I had focused on evangelistic missions given by the Lord over the years.  Though I had planted or built up certain local churches overseas, the task of baptism was performed by the elders.  I did baptize two local dying elderly persons a decade ago. In the last three years where I served in a local congregation, I only baptized another 2 elderly persons.  Like St Paul, the Lord forbid that I should ever entertain the thought of ownership of the flock. It is human weakness for church members to identify and follow leaders like Paul or Apollos thereby causing a sectarian spirit in the church as seen in the example of the Corinthian church, or vice versa for the church elder or pastor to assume ownership of the church or to lord over the members as his subordinate followers whom he baptizes.

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