Books of Bible
Frequently Asked Question
Please explain what baptism is being considered in I Cor. 15:29 and who are
the dead (dead ones)?
Paul wrote, "Whether then it be I or they, so we preach, and so ye
believed. Now if Christ is preached that he hath been raised from the dead,
how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?" (1 Cor.
15:11-12). There are three groups mentioned here:
In verse 20 Paul says, "Else what shall they do that are baptized for the
dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why then are they baptized for
them?" This is the same "they" mentioned earlier -- these were the people
who were saying "there is no resurrection of the dead." They were also the
people who were baptizing for the dead. The dead here is not "dead in sin,"
but the physically dead. They were being baptized for their physically dead
friends and relatives, but were inconsistent in saying "there is no
resurrection." The apostle is simply pointing out that their action
contradicted their teaching. His argument is for a general resurrection of
all the dead and he is answering the false teachers who denied such
- "I or they" -- the apostles (1 Cor 15:11)
- "You" -- the Corinthian Christians were holding to truth (1 Cor 15:12)
- "Them" -- members of the church in Corinth who taught error -- "there is
no resurrection of the dead."