“But Paul said he was not sent to baptize…”
first look at the whole passage in question:
appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you
agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you
may be perfectly united in mind and thought. 11My brothers, some
from Chloe's household have informed me that there are quarrels among you. 12What
I mean is this: One of you says, "I follow Paul"; another, "I
follow Apollos"; another, "I follow Cephas"; still another,
"I follow Christ."
13Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized into the name of Paul? 14I am thankful that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15so no one can say that you were baptized into my name. 16(Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don't remember if I baptized anyone else.) 17For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel--not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
The following quote is taken
from Biblelessons.com :
“In 1 Corinthians
1:10ff, Paul condemns the Christians at
saying that baptism is not important? Certainly not.
Remember it was Paul who said that we put on Christ in baptism (Galations
3:27). Actually, the passage is very consistent in showing that baptism is
very important. It is obvious that the Christians in
divisions that were occurring with the Corinthians apparently got started
because they were placing improper importance and significance on who
baptized them. Whether it was Paul or some other teacher, it did not matter.
notice something very important about Paul’s words that actually demonstrate
the necessity of baptism:
To re-state, according to verse 13, in order to be called after Christ, at least two things must happen:
1.) Christ must die for that person (which He did)
2.) That person must be baptized into the name of Christ!
has not been baptized into Christ, one cannot rightfully call themselves a
though Paul may have only baptized a few of the Corinthians himself,
personally, they ALL were baptized!
For additional consideration: When Paul says, “Not to baptize but to preach the gospel,” he is using a common element of Greek syntax, the “ou . . . alla (not . . . but) construction. There are a number of places in the NT where not… but does not negate one of the two items under consideration. Instead, it prioritizes them. For example, Peter tells Ananias, “You have not lied to men but to God. Of course He had lied to men, but most importantly he had lied to God.
In a similar way Paul is saying, “I came first and most importantly to preach the gospel, then to Baptize.” This further emphasizes that faith and repentance are to precede baptism.
See also this site
This page last updated: May 9, 2013