Text: And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, he said unto them, have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, we have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. And he said unto them, unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, unto John’s baptism. Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus. When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied. Acts 19,1-6
Paul came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples and, he said unto them, have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, we have not so much heard whether there be any Holy Ghost...Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.
Very often, when we hear messages, we form our own opinion and come to the conclusion, that it has to be the way we have heard it or the way we might have observed it. But probably a couple of days later we find out some more truth, the rest of the story and realize the opinion we had formed was wrong. It is also that way with the gospel; we have to listen to everything and then we have to believe, what is told to us. It effects our eternity with or without God.
Likewise, the disciples in Ephesus heard only a part of the truth and this was good, but it was not sufficient for their salvation. The rest of the story was missing. When they heard all of it, they acted upon it. It was the same way with Cornelius, too (see Acts, Chapter 10).
The gospel is the good news from God for all people--the message that Jesus Christ came to give His life on Calvary. He carried the sins of the world on the cross, died on the cross, was buried and rose from the death on the 3rd day. He revealed himself to his disciples and gave them a message, that if they whould adhere to it, would give them salvation and forgiveness of sins. Who in Europe hasn't heard this yet?
Everyone should listen to this message. However, it might shock you that only hearing and believing this is not enough to save you. This message does not change the sinful nature of man. Therefore, you have no chance. If this were so, almost all 350 million inhabitors of Europe would make it to heaven.
Jesus gave his disciples more than this message. He gave them also the rest of the story, the same message Paul also preached, a message, the sold out, traditional church fears. It is the rest of the story. It is the rest, that is most important and vital for you and for me. Paul is telling you the whole truth. He would tell it also to you and would ask you, "Have you already received the Holy Ghost and have you been buried with Jesus Christ in baptism?" No infant sprinkling should serve as a substitution for the true biblical water-baptism in Jesus name. According to God's Word, only the baptism out of faith is valid, which is for the forgiveness of sins and the washing aways of sins. Therefore, there is no substition for it. Infant baptism and all other teaching that is not lining up with the Word of God is tradition of men and not from God. They are there to keep you away from the rest of the story. When you have received all the truth, you need no tradition, Christ has set me free. It is too late to tell me more lies, because I have heard the rest of the story.
Now I have been baptized in Jesus name too and I have received the Holy Ghost like the disciples in Ephesus. Why not you, too? (rw)
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