1 Corinthians 1:17

1 Corinthians 1:17
"Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel."


This passage is quoted to prove that baptism is not necessary for salvation.


  1. Such an interpretation is sheer perversion of the context for Paul says he did baptize Crispus, Gaius and the household of Stephanas, (vs. 14-16), which would mean Paul writes his own condemnation if "Christ sent me not to baptize" be understood to be a prohibition of him baptizing converts.


  2. The context shows that there was a partisan spirit in Corinth. Converts were saying "I am of Paul", "I am of Apollos", (1 Cor. 1:12, 13), but Paul would have none of it. Hence his sigh of thankfulness: "I thank God that I baptized none of you . . . lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name." (vs. 14, 15)


  3. This passage indicates that no special virtue is associated with the baptizer.1 Paul himself was commissioned by Christ to be, first and foremost, a preacher of the Gospel. Whether he personally undertook the baptism of converts was a matter of no importance.


  4. That baptism is essential to salvation is evident from Mark 16:16; John 3:5; 1 Peter 3:21; Gal. 3:27; Acts 2:38; 22:16; 16:30-33.


  1. Jesus did not personally baptize, this was done by his disciples. (John 4:2). Return
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