I have been thinking about Apollos. Yes, In the book of Acts he was just a blip within a greater narrative. However, what was written in that book is a highly condensed and we can grow much from his story.
“And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus. This man was instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the things of the Lord, knowing only the baptism of John. And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly. And when he was disposed to pass into Achaia, the brethren wrote, exhorting the disciples to receive him: who, when he was come, helped them much which had believed through grace: For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publickly, shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ” (Acts 18:24-28).
I find a number interesting attributes about him and others around him that may help us in our interactions with both believers and unbelievers alike.
His behavior and character
- He was eloquent
- He was a bold speaker
- He was humble to learn more
Are we “eloquent” as he was, persuading clearly and effectively the truth to those around us? He used clear language to convince and give evidence that Jesus was Christ. He was bold. Are we boldly persuading the unbelievers to the ways of Christ’s gospel?
- He was mighty in the scriptures
- He was instructed in the way of the Lord
- He was willing to learn the ways of God more perfectly
He was a well learned individual. Being instructed in the Scriptures made him a powerful tool for Christ. We are also called to be knowledgeable and know the scriptures. We need to be willing to grow in our understanding of the Word of God. Always ask questions to become more clear on the ways of Christ.
Taught truth and had spiritual fervor
- He spake and taught diligently the things of the Lord
- He give evidence for Christ from the scriptures which convinced the unbelievers
He seemed to be a powerful speaker, he was not passive. While teaching the truth of Christ’s gospel, he actively engaged others even in hostile environments where persecution would be ramped. Do we have this fervor for speaking the truth of the gospel?
- He convinced the unbelievers by giving evidence for Christ from the scriptures
- He was eloquent – having the ability to use language clearly, effectively and persuasively
- He knew what he believed and why, being well learned in the ways of God
Are we prepared to give an answer to those around us? If it is true, which it is, then all attacks against Christ’s teaching will be fallacious. 1 Peter 3:15-16 “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.”
- Being both knowledgeable and charismatic he was still humble to learn more and be corrected
- Being a “new comer” to the local body of Christ, they humbly received him with no apologies
- This local body was not embarrassed to learn from him and he helped them greatly
Are we humble not just in word but rather in action? Let’s take note and see that we can do the most for Christ when we are bold and confident while being humble.
- Aquila and Priscilla did not cry against his understanding and call him a deceiver, rather they mercifully “…took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly.”
- He was open to receive Aquila and Priscilla along with the rest of the Church. He did not act as a “lone ranger.”
- The other Christians also received him to their group
Being willing to receive Apollos, the local body of Christ did not erect artificial walls of division when scripture never demands division. Both he and the other Christians did not seem to divide over issues that have no foundation in the big picture of following Christ and preaching his word. He worked with them for the larger goal of the Kingdom of God!
Let’s be full of good behavior, knowledge, truth and fervor, having a ready answer, humble, and receiving each other in Christ so the world may know that we are followers of him (John 17:20).