The Expository Files


Almost a Christian

The Front Page


Paul was bought in chains before King Agrippa. Instead of pleading for his release he told the king about Jesus. It had been Agrippa’s father who had executed James, the first apostle to die for the gospel. After reminding the king of what the prophets predicted centuries before, and of the works that Jesus had done during His ministry - things which “were not done in a corner” (which simple means that they were done publicly and were well known) - King Agrippa responded to Paul by saying; “Almost you persuade me to be a Christian.”

Unfortunately, being “almost a Christian” is not enough, and yet there are probably many who well fit that description. But Jesus said that one must be “born again” Perhaps Agrippa was “almost” born again, but Jesus said one must be born “of water and the Spirit” to see the kingdom of God (John 3:3-5).

When one obeys the gospel, he is figuratively said to have been crucified and buried with Christ (Gal. 2:20; Rom. 6:3-5). Without the burial there is no freedom from sin and rising to “walk in newness of life.” Perhaps Agrippa was almost ready to be buried with Christ, but he never was.

People were told that they must repent and be baptized in the name of Christ for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38). Agrippa was never quite ready to do so. How close was Agrippa to becoming a Christian? Maybe he was very close - but he was not close enough.

By Jon W. Quinn
The Front Page
From Expository Files 22.6; June 2015