Main text: Acts 18:24-28
In medical parlance, when the suffix ‘–sis’ is adjoined to a noun, what is being described is simply a state or condition brought about by the presence and activity or abnormal preponderance of that combining noun (entity). For instance, Leukocytosis implies a condition where leukocytes (white blood cells) are abnormally increased in the blood; while Plasmodiasis (Malaria, in lay terms) refers to a condition caused by the presence and activity of Plasmodium.
Going by this exegesis, Apollosis would connote the condition of a man in who is the similitude of Apollos. But what do we have to say of Apollos as to create a phenomenon about him? It is interesting that the Holy Writ described him as a man who was learned and mighty in scriptures. Not only that, he had been instructed in the way of the Lord; he spoke with great fervour in the Spirit and taught about Jesus accurately.
With such intimidating credentials, the natural tendency is to think there could be really nothing serious this great man was missing. But astonishingly, just before we get blown away in admiration, we are alerted he knew only the baptism of John. This, to a curious mind teaches the insufficiency of any and every believer in spite of whatever attainment.
Upon a closer look, one discovers it was some little-known couple – Priscilla and Aquila who explained to this popular servant of God ‘the way of God more adequately’. And someone is like: ‘seriously? How can this be?’ Simple! Apollos had learnt the blessedness of being poor in Spirit. That Aquila and Priscilla were able to expound more truths to him successfully; exposes how teachable he was and how willing he was to add to what he knew. He probably went back after the discussion to sincerely and humbly cross-check those things. As a result of untamed ego and self-conceit, in today’s world, a similar attitude could be a near-impossibility! Nevertheless, that is the way to go, if we must grow, remain under the hands of the Lord and be exalted in due time (1 Peter 5:7). It is no wonder that eventually, Apollos was better off; his effectiveness and productivity in ministry was greatly enhanced afterwards.
The lesson is clear. Apollosis, being that state of humility and willingness of a believer who obviously has much of God’s word and encounters to be corrected by others seemingly less-gifted or renowned is a condition we ought to perpetually live in. Never forget; the contrite heart and the broken spirit, He will not despise.