Categorized | AIS File Library, Baptism

No Other Name

No Other Name
Author Unknown

IS THE FORMULA AN UNNECESSARY DETAIL?

Having established the importance and essentially of water baptism, we now turn our attention to the “formula, or words to be spoken over the candidate. If baptism is essential, then it is essential that we do it correctly. Some will argue that God is not interested in details. But what constitutes a “detail”? Was it a “detail” that the death angel was looking for that dark night in Egypt when the first born son was slain in every house that had no blood on the door posts and lintels? Could the Jews have varied the “details” a little and painted the windows instead? Or used red paint instead of blood? After all, they look the same, and God is not “picky.” But God was “picky” that night, and details did matter. Was it just a “detail” when Uzzah touched the ark to steady it as it made its way down the dusty road. If it were a detail, he was killed for it! Or what about the “details” concerning the Lord’s Supper? Must we use bread and fruit of the vine? The Mormons use bread and water; the Quakers use nothing; and one blaspheming modernist in Maryland set beer and pretzels on the altar. He said the “details didn’t matter,” “God wasn’t picky,” as long as the intention is correct!

Where will it stop as ministers relegate everything they don’t agree with to the “circular file” of “unnecessary details?” Boyd sums up his opposition to our insistence on the use of the New Testament formula by saying: “In other words, the God presupposed in this theology will damn a person on a technicality” (p. 145). He feels of course, that the baptismal formula is a technicality! To obey God exactly in the requirements for salvation, as we in the Oneness faith believe in doing, is characterized as “a relationship between a meticulous perfectionist employer and his fearful employees” (p. 145). And he refers to water baptism as a “procedure the believer performs for God” (p. 145). We don’t view Cod as a “meticulous perfectionist” just because he sets down clearly in the Word a very simple plan for the procurement of pardon. Neither is baptism something we perform for God, For it is we, not God, who receive remission of sins. We are the sole beneficiaries of that great experience. Moses was told to be careful to “make all things according to the pattern,” that was shown him. Should we do less, and use “grace” as an excuse for this “free-wheeling,” pick as you please cafeteria approach to religion? Peter silenced these arguments about the unimportant of the Name of Jesus and its employment when he wrote: “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other Name (“no second name”) under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

And Jesus told us something also about those who do not have particular concern about even the least of his commandments (and baptism is certainly, not that): “Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, And shall teach men so, he shall be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven” (Matt. 5:19). That’s the principle of obedience that Christ laid down. We are not to “pick and choose” what is a technicality and what is not! We Oneness are not “fearful employees” but joyously obedient followers of Christ, who look forward to hearing: “Come thou good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord.” And our desire is that we may say, as Christ did, “Lo, I come … to do thy will, 0 God 11 (Heb. 10:7). Technicalities and all! For the “volume of the book” is full of them!

IS FEAR HEALTHY?

Dr. Boyd apparently thinks “fear” has no place in a “relationship between a passionately loving Father and his undeserving children” (p. 145). But we all know the results of such thinking in today’s society in which the children have absolutely no fear of the parents: Permiscious lawlessness! Paul did not agree with Dr. Boyd’s “no fear” theory for he wrote: “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (Phill 2:12). Paul believed it was more important to tremble then to whistle! The writer to the Hebrews says: “Let us therefore fear, lest a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to cone short of it” (Heb. 4:1). Omitting the Name of Jesus in Water Baptism would certainly cause one to “come short” if we consider New Testament practice. Trinitarians better fear! What the modern church, which claims to be Christian, needs is a little more fear, instead of this “merrily we skip along” attitude that has developed under the guise of “love” and “grace” The modern day evangelical convert is fast degenerating into an individual who gives his “heart to Jesus,” lends his body to the devil, and keeps his mind for himself! And this is real grounds for fear! (and worry!).

THE FORMULA

The New Testament is abundantly clear that Christian baptism was always performed in Jesus Name. This is the formula and the New Testament knows no other! Dr. Boyd grudgingly hints this may be so: “Thus, even if the earliest disciples did in fact baptize in Jesus Name, it should at least be very clear that they did not do so with the Oneness significance…” (p. 141). He further states: “The more informed Oneness Pentecostals like to argue that Jesus’ Name Baptism was practiced not only in Acts, but in the second and perfectionist” just because he sets down clearly in the Word a very simple plan for the procurement of pardon. Neither is baptism something we perform for God, For it is we, not God, who receive remission of sins. We are the sole beneficiaries of that great experience. Moses was told to be careful to “make all things according to the pattern,” that was shown him. Should we do less, and use “grace” as an excuse for this “free-wheeling,” pick as you please cafeteria approach to religion? Peter silenced these arguments about the unimportant of the Name of Jesus and its employment when he wrote: “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other Name (“no second name”) under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

And Jesus told us something also about those who do not have particular concern about even the least of his commandments (and baptism is certainly, not that): “Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, And shall teach men so, he shall be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven” (Matt. 5:19). That’s the principle of obedience that Christ laid down. We are not to “pick and choose” what is a technicality and what is not! We Oneness are not “fearful employees” but joyously obedient followers of Christ, who look forward to hearing: “Come thou good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord.” And our desire is that we may say, as Christ did, “Lo, I come … to do thy will, 0 God 11 (Heb. 10:7). Technicalities and all! For the “volume of the book” is full of them!

IS FEAR HEALTHY?

Dr. Boyd apparently thinks “fear” has no place in a “relationship between a passionately loving Father and his undeserving children” (p. 145). But we all know the results of such thinking in today’s society in which the children have absolutely no fear of the parents: Permiscious lawlessness! Paul did not agree with Dr. Boyd’s “no fear” theory for he wrote: “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (Phill 2:12). Paul believed it was more important to tremble then to whistle! The writer to the Hebrews says: “Let us therefore fear, lest a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to cone short of it” (Heb. 4:1). Omitting the Name of Jesus in Water Baptism would certainly cause one to “come short” if we consider New Testament practice. Trinitarians better fear! What the modern church, which claims to be Christian, needs is a little more fear, instead of this “merrily we skip along” attitude that has developed under the guise of “love” and “grace” The modern day evangelical convert is fast degenerating into an individual who gives his “heart to Jesus,” lends his body to the devil, and keeps his mind for himself! And this is real grounds for fear! (and worry!).

THE FORMULA

The New Testament is abundantly clear that Christian baptism was always performed in Jesus Name. This is the formula and the New Testament knows no other! Dr. Boyd grudgingly hints this may be so: “Thus, even if the earliest disciples did in fact baptize in Jesus Name, it should at least be very clear that they did not do so with the Oneness significance…” (p. 141). He further states: “The more informed Oneness Pentecostals like to argue that Jesus’ Name Baptism was practiced not only in Acts, but in the second and perfectionist” just because he sets down clearly in the Word a very simple plan for the procurement of pardon. Neither is baptism something we perform for God, For it is we, not God, who receive remission of sins. We are the sole beneficiaries of that great experience. Moses was told to be careful to “make all things according to the pattern,” that was shown him. Should we do less, and use “grace” as an excuse for this “free-wheeling,” pick as you please cafeteria approach to religion? Peter silenced these arguments about the unimportant of the Name of Jesus and its employment when he wrote: “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other Name (“no second name”) under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

And Jesus told us something also about those who do not have particular concern about even the least of his commandments (and baptism is certainly, not that): “Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, And shall teach men so, he shall be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven” (Matt. 5:19). That’s the principle of obedience that Christ laid down. We are not to “pick and choose” what is a technicality and what is not! We Oneness are not “fearful employees” but joyously obedient followers of Christ, who look forward to hearing: “Come thou good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord.” And our desire is that we may say, as Christ did, “Lo, I come … to do thy will, 0 God 11 (Heb. 10:7). Technicalities and all! For the “volume of the book” is full of them!

IS FEAR HEALTHY?

Dr. Boyd apparently thinks “fear” has no place in a “relationship between a passionately loving Father and his undeserving children” (p. 145). But we all know the results of such thinking in today’s society in which the children have absolutely no fear of the parents: Permiscious lawlessness! Paul did not agree with Dr. Boyd’s “no fear” theory for he wrote: “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (Phill 2:12). Paul believed it was more important to tremble then to whistle! The writer to the Hebrews says: “Let us therefore fear, lest a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to cone short of it” (Heb. 4:1). Omitting the Name of Jesus in Water Baptism would certainly cause one to “come short” if we consider New Testament practice. Trinitarians better fear! What the modern church, which claims to be Christian, needs is a little more fear, instead of this “merrily we skip along” attitude that has developed under the guise of “love” and “grace” The modern day evangelical convert is fast degenerating into an individual who gives his “heart to Jesus,” lends his body to the devil, and keeps his mind for himself! And this is real grounds for fear! (and worry!).

THE FORMULA

The New Testament is abundantly clear that Christian baptism was always performed in Jesus Name. This is the formula and the New Testament knows no other! Dr. Boyd grudgingly hints this may be so: “Thus, even if the earliest disciples did in fact baptize in Jesus Name, it should at least be very clear that they did not do so with the Oneness significance…” (p. 141). He further states: “The more informed Oneness Pentecostals like to argue that Jesus’ Name Baptism was practiced not only in Acts, but in the second and third century as well. And, indeed there does exist a small amount of evidence to this effect” (p. 141).

“If the earliest disciples did in fact baptize in Jesus’ Name” he says! There’s no “if” about it! We have the record, for “it is written.” They .baptized in no other way! He surely must admit this. He is an educated Man, a graduate of Princeton. He reads the Greek; he has an open Bible; he has access to great libraries, he knows what scholarship says on this point. Before we examine the scriptural record, let us hear the conclusion reached
eminent scholars from just such a scriptural examination.

G. R. BEASLEY – MURRAY

This Baptist scholar and historian, fluent in classic languages, was commissioned by the Baptist Church to write a definitive volume on water baptism for the benefit of the Baptist Church. His volume is a masterpiece of research. He has left no stone upturned. The work is truly the “be all” and “end all” on the baptismal controversy. He did not consider the evidence “a small amount” for he writes: “There is not one example in the whole New Testament literature of a baptism taking place in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” (G.R. Beasley Murray, “Baptism In The New Testament”, p. 82-83). He further proves that baptism was performed with the invocation of Jesus Name, was associated with remission of sins, and followed
a charismatic outpouring of the Holy Spirit. What does that sound like? And this from a man who has no “axe to grind” 2:38 or otherwise!

WILHEIM BOUSSET

This German historian writes, “It is still essentially a baptism in the Name of Jesus” (Wilheim Bousset, Kurios Christos, p.295). He goes on to say, “The testimony for the wide distribution of the simple baptismal formula (in Jesus Name-ed.) down into the second century is so overwhelming that even in Matt. 28:19, the trinitarian formula was only later inserted” (Bousett, p.295).

DR. ARMITAGE ROBINSON

He writes: “In the earliest times, however, baptism appears to have been administered ‘in the name of Jesus Christ’ (Acts 2:38, 10:48), or ‘Lord Jesus’ (Acts 8:16; 19:5). And on the use of the single baptismal formula St. Paul’s argument in I Cor. 1:13 seems to be based…” (Ephesians p. 234ff).

To this conclusion of Dr. Armitage is added the endorsement of Dr. Charles Gore, in his masterful work on Christian history and doctrine entitled the “Reconstruction of Belief”: “I have expressed disagreement with this in the past, but I desire to retract the disagreement. I think the evidence is fairly convincing that at the beginning only the single name was used. Down to the time of the Schoolmen this view prevailed, see St. Thomas Aquinas, Sum. Th. 3A qu. 66 a. 6 ” (Gore, 745-746).

DEAN STANLEY

He writes in “Christian Institutions” the following: “Doubtless the more comprehensive form in which baptism is now everywhere administered in the three fold Name—soon superseded the simpler from of that in the ‘Name of the Lord Jesus Only.’ ”

ENCYCLOPEDIA OF RELIGION AND ETHICS

The Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics edited by James Hastings states “The formula used was ‘in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ’ or some synomymous phrase; there is no evidence for the use of the triune Name” (Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, vol. 2,p.384, 1958 edition).

HASTINGS DICTIONARY OF THE BIBLE

Hastings’ Dictionary of the Bible adds: “Moreover, there is no mention in the New Testament of any one being baptized into the name of the Trinity” (James Hastings, Dictionary of the Bible, vol. 1 , p.241, 1906 edition).

THE NEW INTERNATIONAL STANDARD BIBLE ENCYCLOPEDIA

The New International Standard Bible Encyclopedia vol. 1, pages 395-396 under “Baptism” and referring to the Trinitarian formula says: “But it is
,curious that the words are not given in any description of Christian Baptism until the time of Justin Martyr, and there they are not repeated exactly but in a slightly extended form. In every account of the performance of the rite in Apostolic times a much shorter formula is in use. The 3,000 believers were baptized on the day of Pentecost in the Name of Jesus Christ. The same formula was used at the Baptism of Corneilus and those that were with him. Indeed it would appear to have been the Usual one, from Paul’s question to the Corinthians: ‘Were you baptized in the name of Paul?’ No record of the Trinitarian formula can be discovered in the Acts of the Apostles. The difficulty was considered by the Fathers.” “I imagine it was!

OTTO HEICK

Otto Heick’s objective comment in his comprehensive work on Christian thought is this: “At first baptism was administered in the name of Jesus, but gradually in the Name of the Triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” (Otto Heick, “A History of Christian Thought’,’ vol. 1, p. 215).

SCHAFF-HERZOG ENCYCLOPEDIA

Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge: “The New Testament knows only baptism in the Name of Jesus.. .which still occurs in the second and third centuries” (Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, vol. 1, pg. 435, 1966 edition).

ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITTANICA

“We gather from Acts 19:4 that John had merely baptized in the Name of the Coming Messiah, without identifying him with Jesus of Nazareth. The Apostolic Age supplied the identification, and the normal use during it seems to have been, ‘into Christ Jesus’ or ‘in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ’ simply, or “of the Lord Jesus Christ’ (Encyclopedia Brittanica, vol. 3 p.368, 1910 edition).

BAPTIST SCHOLAR BEASLEY-MURRAY SPEAKS OUT

G.R. Beasley-Murray, whom we previously cited, has produced what many consider the most comprehensive study on water Baptism yet. His book, Baptism in the New Testament, is required reading for any who would gain a true biblical understanding of this rite of Christian initiation. Beasley-Murray is one of the leading New Testament scholars in England, and is, as we have mentioned, a Baptist; but his research transcends denominational lines. F.F. Bruce said concerning his book: “…it is a work of first class scholarship, and it would be a tragedy if it were to become unobtainable.” After years of study and investigation into the subject of water baptism, Beasley-Murray has determined that New Testament water baptism was performed exclusively with the single formula of “Jesus Name;” was for the remission of sins; and was further associated with Charismatic Spirit reception. (If one is “in a hurry” the same conclusion can be obtained by studying the Articles of Faith of the United Pentecostal Church International or the Manual of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World!)

Let us read what Dr. Beasley-Murray has to say on baptism; the fruit of years of unbiased scrutinizing of scripture and history:

“The Name of the Lord Jesus is called over the baptized. He therefore dedicates himself to the Lord and is appropriated for him… This implies an effective action by which the Messiah enrolls the baptized as one of his subjects and accords to him a place in the Kingdom of God” (p. 102).

“In the passage already cited, Acts 22:16, the exhortation to Paul, ‘Rise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on his name,’ implies that his sins will be washed away in his baptism accompanied by prayer. The word of Peter in Acts 2:38 conveys a similar impression…” (p. 102).

“As has been mentioned, baptism in Acts is always administered ‘in the name of Jesus Christ’ or in the name of the Lord Jesus”‘ (Acts 2:38; 8:16; 10:48; 19:5) (p. 100).

“That the Name was on the lips of the candidate baptized as well as uttered by the baptizer is harmonious with the dual nature of baptism as an act of man and an act of God” (p. 100).

“Cleansing is the primary meaning of baptism in all religious groups that have practiced it; but when baptism is administered in the name of the Lord who died and rose for the blotting out of sins (Acts 3:19), this aspect of its significance is immeasurably strengthened” (p. 103).

“Again and again we have had cause to remind ourselves that Christian Baptism is baptism in the name of the Lord Jesus; in it the name of the Lord is called over the baptized, declaring him to be the Lord’s, and the name is confessed and invoked by the baptized” (p. 120).

“The significance of ‘in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ’ is presumed as known without further explanation: the name of Jesus Christ is called on by the baptismal candidate in appeal for washing, consecration and righteousness, and the name of Jesus Christ is called over him by the baptizer, signifying that Jesus Christ … cleanses, consecrates, and justifies him” (p. 166).

Dr. Beasley-Murray feels that Paul’s expression, “but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God,” in I Corinthians 6:11, is a direct reference to the Jesus name baptismal formula: “‘In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ’ reflects the use of the name in the baptismal formula” (p. 163). He also is certain that Paul’s reference to the “Spirit of our God” links water baptism in Jesus name with Spirit Baptism:

“That the experience of the Spirit is linked with baptism in the name of the Lord Jesus needs no further demonstration after our discussion of the evidence on this matter in the Book of Acts” (p. 163). He also feels it is “difficult to dissociate the ‘washing’ of I Cor. 6:11 from the baptismal cleansing” (p. 163). So do we!

Interestingly enough, Dr. Beasley-Murray feels that I Cor. 6:11 might have been used after Paul’s death as the basis for the newly evolving Trinitarian formula which eventually replaced the original apostolic Jesus’ name formula. The reason for this suggestion is that I Cor. 6:11 mentions Jesus, the Spirit, and God in one paragraph. Trinitarian innovators might have seized that to justify their new “replacement” formula. He writes: “This is insufficient evidence for the existence in Paul’s time of a baptism in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, but it provides a hint of the way in which the Trinitarian formula arose…” (p. 167).

Dr. Beasley-Murray is also in agreement with Oneness Pentecostalism in linking a Charismatic Spirit Baptism with water baptism in Jesus name. He writes:

“The third and perhaps most impressive gift of God in baptism is the Spirit, the possession of which was frequently accompanied in the earliest church by spectacular Charismatic gifts and signs. That the gift should be associated with baptism is to be expected. For baptism in the name of the Messiah Jesus related the believer to the Lord of the Kingdom, who had received the Spirit from the Father that he might pour him forth upon his people…” (p. 104). “… we cannot doubt that this inward sealing of the Spirit is conceived as taking place in baptism in the name of Jesus, when the name was invoked and called over the baptized…” (p. 174). “Thus the ‘seal of the Spirit’ is neither baptism in water, nor a baptism of the Spirit divorced from the rite of baptism; it is the ‘baptism of the Spirit’ in association with the laying of the name of Jesus on a believer in the rite of baptism” (p. 174). “The seal of the Spirit however, is in inward possession which none but God can see, apart from its effect in character, behavior, and the Charismata” (p. 175).

There is all the evidence one needs: over 400 pages of unbiased research conducted by a world renown scholar of the Baptist Faith. His conclusion? Baptism in Jesus name for the remission of sins, accompanied by Spirit baptism with Charismatic evidences! Why was none of this impressive array of evidence for the Jesus name formula ever mentioned by Dr. Boyd ? Why, in the face of his mountain of research, did Dr. Boyd fail to quote it even once? A scholar like Beasley-Murray is known in every theological seminary, his reputation spans two continents, he carries the highest endorsements, and his name occurs in many bibliographies. Yet he is never once called to the stand by Dr. Boyd respecting the Jesus name formula. Is this type of “exegesis” indicative of future trends in presenting “all the facts?” Forbid it, Almighty God!

THE CATHOLIC CHURCH GOES TO “CONFESSION”

Perhaps the most astonishing proof of the alteration of the baptismal formula from Jesus name to triune titles comes from the “alterations” themselves–the Catholic Church!

Some years ago, before I ever dreamed I would be writing this book, I was driving passed a thrift store when the Lord impressed on me to stop and go in. I was not in the habit of doing this, but I obeyed. Once inside the Lord directed me to a cabinet of old used books. I began to search through them. There among the old books I found an official Catholic Catechism, with the Bishop’s “imprimater” and “nihil obstat.” These are Latin terms which mean the book is officially approved as containing “nothing objectionable” or contrary to Catholic teaching. Guided by the Lord I turned to the section dealing with water baptism. It was then I realized why the Lord had been so patiently directing my steps. I was astonished to read this official Catholic admission concerning the original baptismal formula: “The earliest practice of the church was probably to baptize converts ‘in the name of Jesus’ (Acts 10:48; 19:5) since in baptism it was his Lordship they confessed and into his body they were incorporated” (An American Catholic Catechism, p. 112). What more is needed? As Augustine said, “Rome has spoken; case closed!”

If that is not enough, then surely this quote from an equally “official” Catholic encyclopedia will provide the final “coup de grace” to this painfully recalcitrant stonewalling by Trinitarians. It reads as follows: “An explicit reference to the Trinitarian formula of Baptism cannot be found in the first century” (New Catholic Encyclopedia, New York, McGraw-Hill, 1967, p. 59).

“Higher mathematics” can surely be employed here by our opponents to put “two and two together.” For if the original formula was baptism in Jesus’ name (An American Catholic Catechism), and the Trinitarian formula was unheard of for at least 100 years (New Catholic Encyclopedia), then what conclusion is possible other than the one which maintains that the Triadic formula for baptism was an unapostolic invention, birthed late in time, and devoid of New Testament precedent o r approbation. The Catholics admit it, the Baptists admit it, scholars admit it, historians admit it – in fact, among most critical New Testament researchers it’s not even considered a debatable point any longer! Why doesn’t Dr. Boyd come in? It’s getting awfully cold out there. He once warmed himself by the fires of this great truth, till an “ill wind” blew him elsewhere. God grant that he return is my ascending prayer.

WILLISTON WALKER

Evidence continues to pour down upon us-from every direction. Williston Walker, noted historian adds: ” With the early disciples generally baptism was ‘in the Name of Jesus Christ'” (Williston Walker, A History of the Christian Church, p. 87).

ENCYCLOPEDIA BIBLICA

And from the Encyclopedia Biblica: “‘In the Name of Jesus Christ’ or ‘of the Lord Jesus.’: The former expression is used in Acts 2:38 and 10:48, The latter is used in Acts 8:16 and 19:5. See also Acts 22:16 … From these passages, and from Paul’s words in I Corinthians 1:13 (‘Was Paul crucified for you, or were ye baptized in the Name of Paul?’) it is natural to conclude that baptism was administered in the earliest times ‘in the Name of Jesus Christ’ or in that ‘of the Lord Jesus.’ This view is confirmed by the fact that the earliest forms of the Baptismal Confession appears to have been single – not triple, as was the later creed” (Encyclopedia Biblica, Vol. 1, p.473, 1899 edition).

Thus we have it from the word of scholarship and history. The verdict is in Baptism in Jesus Name. This is unbiased evidence. Not one of these men was personally baptized in Jesus Name. If they espoused any faith at all, it was Trinitarian. But concerning the Triune baptismal formula they are unanimous “not one example in the whole New Testament,” “doubtless” of later origin, “no evidence” for its use, “no mention of it in the New Testament,” “not given in any description” in the New Testament, and “no record can be discovered in the Acts.” This is all quite damaging to Dr. Boyd’s “if the earliest disciples” theory. I wouldn’t want to be in court with these witnesses taking the stand against me. Their testimony for “Jesus Name” being the original formula is equally compelling. For they consider the evidence “overwhelming” and “convincing” being from “the earliest times,” and “found in every account” They find that “at the beginning” it is only “the single name.” The “New Testament knows only baptism in the Name of Jesus” for it was “administered from the earliest times” and “confirmed” by “baptismal confessions.”

What can Dr. Boyd and fellow trinitarians say in the face of all this evidence? Do they also believe the earth is flat?

NEW TESTAMENT ACCOUNTS

These Scholars all independently reached the same conclusion through an examination of the baptismal accounts in the Book of Acts and the witness of history. Let us turn our attention to the record of baptisms in the New Testament Church.

JERUSALEM

The Jews on the day of Pentecost, together with their gentile proselytes were commanded to “Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38).

[112] AN AMERICAN CATHOLIC CATECHISM

unfolding of the significance of the baptismal act with which the convert began his new life in the Christian faith. The earliest practice of the church was probably-to baptize converts “in the name of Jesus” (Acts 10:48; 19:5) since in baptism it was his Lordship they confessed and into his body they were incorporated. In an early letter, St. Paul explained succinctly this incorporation in terms of passing from the tutelage of the law to authentic sonship. “For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” This means that the divisions set up by our old categories are torn down, “for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal. 3:23-28).

“An explicit reference to the Trinitarian formula of Baptism cannot be found in the first century.”

IN THIS CATHOLIC CATECHISM, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH CLEARLY RECOGNIZES THAT THE ORIGINAL BAPTISM WAS, “IN THE NAME OF JESUS” AND MUST HAVE BEEN CHANGED AFTER THE DISCIPLES’ DEATH.

SAMARIA

Phillip the evangelist went there preaching the “Kingdom of God and the Name of Jesus Christ” (Acts 8:12). Where upon the Samaritans in a great city wide revival were “baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus” (Acts 8:16).

CAESAREA

Cornelius, and those of his household, the first Gentile believers, listened carefully to Peter sermon that through Jesus Name “whosoever believeth in him shall received remission of sins.” During the sermon they were filled with the Holy Ghost and Peter therefore commanded that they should “be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ” (Acts 10:48 R.V.). Being filled with the Holy Ghost did not excuse them from baptism in Jesus Name, but rather made it incumbent upon them!

EPHESUS

Paul met some converts who knew only the teaching of John the Baptist, having been baptized by him. Paul, in spite of this, ordered their rebaptism in Jesus Name after they learned fully of Christ:” And when they heard this they were baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus” (Acts 19;5). Anyone learning this truth needs to be “rebaptized” from whatever other form they had.

ETHIOPIA

Phillip joined himself to the chariot of the Ethiopian Eunuch, who was traveling to his homeland, and preached Jesus unto him. When the Ethiopian believed on Jesus Christ, “They went down both unto the water, both Phillip and the Eunuch; and he baptized him” (Acts 8:38). What was Phillip’s formula for baptism? Acts 8:16 informs us it was “in the Name of the Lord Jesus”. He certainly wouldn’t change his formula in one day.

DAMASCUS

Paul, blinded by his experience with Christ on the Damascus Road, makes his way to that city to await healing and further instruction. This is quick to arrive as Annanias enters the house and informs him: “And now why tarriest thou? Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord” (Acts 22:16). Paul was baptized with the “invocation of the Name of the Lord Jesus.” This required having the Name called “upon” him. Acts 15:17.

CORINTH
Paul, writing to this church which was torn by splits, puts these questions to them: “Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the Name of Paul?” (I Cor. 1:13). The obvious answers are: Paul was not crucified for them, Christ was; they were not baptized in the Name of Paul, but in the Name of Christ. Unless they were baptized in the name of the undivided Christ, his argument would not make sense. Corinth was baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ.

ROME

The church at Rome was “baptized into Jesus Christ: “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ, were baptized into his death?” (Rom. 6:3).

GALATIA

The Galatians likewise were baptized into the Name of Jesus Christ: “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ, have put on Christ” (Gal. 3:27).

COLOSSE

The Colossians were also “buried with Christ in baptism” (Col. 2:12), and this is defined in Rom. 6:3 as a baptism “into Jesus Christ.” Hence the Colossians received the one Apostolic baptism in the Name of Jesus Christ!

All of the above mentioned churches were founded by either Peter or Paul, or Phillip. We know Peter’s formula was “in the name of Jesus Christ” (Acts 2:38; 10:48), Phillip’s was in the Name of the Lord Jesus (8:16). And the one Paul used was the same (Acts 19:5). In the mouth of two or three witnesses, let every thing be established.

THE FIRST CHURCH COUNCIL AND BAPTISM IN JESUS NAME

In fact, the first Church Council, unlike subsequent Catholic Councils, ruled that the Name of the Lord Jesus was to be called upon all Gentile Converts. We read this in Acts 15:14-7 where it is stated that “God at the first did visit the Gentiles to take out of them a people for his name.” And how is this done? We are not left in the dark: ” That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things.” Now I ask, in what rite or ordinance does a believer have the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ called “upon him” if it is not baptism in that Name? Of all the Church Councils and their decrees that trinitarians love to quote, why do they always pass this one by? Not much is said about this baptismal creed, is there?

WHAT ABOUT MATTHEW 28:19?

The only thing that remains now is to reconcile these references with our Lord’s command in Matthew 28:19 in which the Apostles are commanded to “teach all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” And this task is easy to do. The “scriptures cannot be broken” therefore they must be linked. And it is precisely in linking this command with the references in Acts that produces automatically the reconciliation and perfect agreement of all texts concerning water baptism.

REVELATION AND RECONCILIATION

To reconcile the command by Christ in Matthew 28:19 to “baptize in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit” with the passages in Acts, in which all converts were baptized “in the name of Jesus Christ” or “in the name of the Lord Jesus” is the task now before us. Ingersoll, the famous atheist orator, frequently used this apparent contradiction to show that the Bible contained discrepancies. But it is neither a discrepancy nor a contradiction. If men would cease looking to church councils for their “enlightenment,” and return to the “fountain of living waters,” they would begin to see “all things clearly,” Boyd is sure that “when Jesus commands us to baptize ‘in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit’ he is not cryptically making some esoteric self-reference that must be decoded for believers to be baptized correctly and therefore saved” (Boyd, p. 143). But in so stating, he contradicts the Lord, for Jesus told his disciples that he was indeed speaking of the Father “cryptically” as Dr. Boyd phrases it. “These things have I spoken to you in proverbs (parables-margin): but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs (parables), but I will show you plainly of the Father” (John 16:25). A parable must be “decoded” for it is “cryptic”. His references to the Father were in just such a category; not “plain” but “parabolic.” But Christ promised a time when the Spirit would arrive (John 14:16-19), then they would get the promised revelation concerning the Father: “at that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.” (John 14:20). And that day, of course would be Pentecost. It was on that day the Apostles would receive the promised Revelation mentioned in Luke 10:22: “…and no man knoweth who the Son is but the Father; and who the Father is but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him.” By Christ’s own definition, the baptismal reference in Matt. 28:19 to the “Name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit” was one of his parabolic statements, that would not be made plain until that day, Namely Pentecost, when they would receive the promised Revelation and have the Father shown plainly to them! And this occurred and right on time.

REVELATION AT PENTECOST

Carl Brumback in his book, God in Three Persons, disputes the Apostles received any Godhead revelation on Pentecost and demands we show where it was received. “It is necessary for the Oneness to assume that Peter at Pentecost received a ‘revelation’ that Jesus is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, for it is not written!…” (Brumback, p. 77).

‘But it is written and “plain to him that understandeth and right to them that find knowledge” (Prov. 8:9)! At the climax of his sermon Peter declares by divine revelation: “Therefore let all the House of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36). It is obvious that something startling and apparently paradoxical is being presented by the qualifying terms “same” and “both.” That one and the selfsame Person could be both Lord and Christ, is something that only God could have made happen! Its a miracle! The word “Lord” here is “Kyrios,” which is the Greek term used in the New Testament for Jehovah. Wherever Jehovah appears in the Old Testament, it is translated in the New by Kyrios. Thus the Old Testament phrase in Joel that “whosoever shall call upon the name of Jehovah shall be saved,” is rendered in the New Testament by “whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord (Kyrios) shall be saved.” So
Peter, in revealing Jesus as Lord and Christ, is actually announcing that Jesus is both Jehovah and Messiah the same person is both! Calling him Jehovah is the equivalent of calling him God or Father, for the Jews believed in no other God than God the Father who had revealed himself under the Name Jehovah (Mal. 2:10, Isa. 63:16, Isa. 64:8, John 8:41). This same Jesus is also the Christ, the Annointed Man, the Son of God who was born to save “his people from their sins.” Acts 4:26 makes it quite clear that Lord and Christ is simply another way of saying Father and Son; and Jesus is both! It- is now very “plain,” no longer a “parable,” but truly “revealed.” This same Jesus is both Father and Son, Jehovah and Christ, divine and human, God and Son of God, in the one self same Person of our Lord Jesus Christ! And God has made this to happen, by raising Christ from the dead and simultaneously taking up “residence” in His immortal glorified temple. So it could be truly said that in Christ “dwells all the Fullness of the Godhead bodily.” The Father is dwelling in the Son (John 14:10). Jehovah is embodied in the flesh of his Messiah, the Christ. That is why when the Jews cried out asking what to do, Peter commanded them to be baptized in Jesus Name – for it is the Name of the Father, and of the Son; for this same Jesus is both! Peter’s command in Acts 2:38 is the divinely sanctioned interpretation of what it means to be baptized in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. And that’s the only Biblical explanation ever given!

MATTHEW 28:19 EXPLAINED

Let us now revisit Matthew 28:19 in the light of this revelation:

The first thing we notice is that Jesus refers to One Name and One Name Only. For “name” is in the singular. He is not speaking about “names”, plural, but one name, singular. And this one Name is — the Name of the Father, and also the Name of the Son, and even more, it is also the Name of the Holy Spirit. And it is in this One Name of the Godhead we are to baptize.

THEOLOGICALLY SIGNIFICANT?

Dr. Boyd tries to down play the significance of the singular name in Matt. 28:19 as of no great consequence: ” The bottom line is that there need be nothing theologically significant about the singularity of ‘the Name’ in Matt. 28:19″ (Boyd, p. 143). But my library is filled with books in which Trinitarians have pondered and tried to explain this singularity, and come up with all sorts of revelations of their own! Many come close to the truth, but because like all Trinitarians, they are “reasoning in chains,” they never arrive. For they are not allowed to stray too far from their man devised creeds which bind them fast to their “distinct persons theory.” Take for example this quote from Robert L. Reymond, Presbyterian: “Jesus does not say ‘into the names (plural) of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit’ … What he does say is this, ‘into the name (singular) of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit’. first asserting the unity of the
three by combining them all within the bounds of single name, and then braving. into emphasis the distinction of each…” (Robert L. Reymond, Jesus Divine Messiah, p. 84). This “singular name” comment was so theologically appealing that Ron Rhodes has reproduced it ‘in his book, Christ Before the Manger, on p. 28.

Andrew Jukes found it intriguing and also “theologically significant” for he writes “First then ‘the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost’ is one name, not three or many. Our Lord did not say, ‘Baptizing them into the names’ but ‘into the name, of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit'” (Andrew Jukes, The Names of God, p. 174-175).
So we are not the only ones who notice something “theologically significant” about the singular name! But the significance of it is not in uniting “three persons” but in revealing One!.

FINDING THE ONE NAME

Seeing Jesus declared there is but one name common to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, let us find that name scripturally.

THE NAME OF THE SON

We shall start to solve this equation by considering the middle factor first. What is the Name of the Son? This is easy and all Christendom is in agreement. The Name of the Son is Jesus. “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins” Matt. 1:21.

But the writer of Hebrews tells us that Jesus “inherited” his Name, for “he hath by inheritance, obtained a more excellent name’, (Heb. 1:4). From whom did he therefore inherit this name; the name the angel brought down from heaven?

THE NAME OF THE FATHER

Jesus does not leave us in doubt as to whose name it was he bore. In John 5:43 he declares: “I am come in my Father’s name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.” This name was not his “own name,” but had been his Father’s name before him! He came bearing the name of the Father. The name Jesus is also the Father’s name! The original Greek of John 17:11,12 brings this out clearly. I am quoting from the Revised Version: “Holy Father, keep them in thy Name which Thou has given me” and “I kept them in Thy Name which Thou has given me” . Weymouths translation reads: “I have kept them in thy name – The Name Thou hast given me to bear.” No wonder Christ could say “I have manifested thy name!” (John 17:6). The only name he ever manifested was “Jesus” for “his name was spread abroad” (Mark 6:14). Is it unusual for a Father and Son to have the same name? Doesn’t every legitimate Son bear his Father’s Name? Jesus said “I have declared unto them thy Name, and will declare it” (John 17:26). Aren’t the mighty signs and wonders being done in Jesus Name, and the baptisms being performed in Jesus Name, a fulfillment of Christ’s prophecy that he “will declare it.”

MEANING OF THE NAME JESUS

And why should there be any doubt that Jesus is also the name of the Father. The Name Jesus is the Greek form of the Hebrew “Jahoshea” (or Joshua) which means “Jehovah the Savior.” When you say the Name Jesus, you are actually saying in contracted form “Jehovah the Savior.” The “Jell is from “Jehovah,” God’s revealed name in the Old Testament. Even Trinitarians admit that the name Jehovah is applied to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, their entire “Trinity.” Then why would not the name Jesus (Jehovah-Savior) be equally applicable to all “three persons,” especially seeing that all three play an indispensable part in the plan of Salvation?

We have thus seen the Name of the Father and of the Son is included in the Name of Jesus. All that remains is to determine the Name of the Holy Ghost.

NAME OF THE HOLY GHOST

The final piece of this Name revelation falls into place beautifully. Like the Temple of Solomon, in which each stone was first quarried and polished, and then brought to Jerusalem and silently fitted into place, so the name of the Holy Ghost moves by divine utterance into the completed trilogy. “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in My Name, he shall teach you all things…” (John 14:26) – The Comforter, the Holy Spirit, comes to earth in Jesus Name, bearing Jesus name, and manifesting it. How could it be otherwise for the Comforter is Jesus! “I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you.” (John 14:18). For this
same reason he is called the Spirit of Christ, and Christ (Romans 8:9-10). “Christ in you” (Col 1:27), or in other words, Christ in his Spirit nature come to dwell in us.

NAME OF THE FATHER, SON, AND HOLY GHOST IS JESUS

Thus we have seen demonstrated clearly and simply from the lips of Christ himself that the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost is Jesus. For the Son’s Name is Jesus, and he bore the Father’s Name, who sent the Spirit with the same Name!

In Proverbs we are asked: “Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? Who hath gathered the wind in his fists? Who bath bound the waters in a garment? Who hath established all the ends of the earth? What is his Name, and what is his Son’s Name, if thou canst. tell?”

Thanks to the Oneness light – we can tell! It is Jesus! THE APOSTLES AGREE

That our conclusion is correct concerning the “name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” is proven by the witness of the Apostles. For they were commanded to baptize in the one name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost. All their baptisms were performed in the Name of Jesus. Therefore by comparison it is quickly seen that they recognized that the name of Jesus was the one Name referred to in Matt. 28:19. (See Acts 2:38, 8:16, 10:48, 19:5, 22:16).

And it is through this name, and no other, that the door to cleaness and justification is open to us through water baptism “And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the Name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God” (I Cor. 6:11).

THE “NAMELESS” BAPTISM
Panicing in the face of this tidal wave of scriptural evidence for Baptism in Jesus Name, Dr. Boyd unveils to our astonished eyes one of the most bizzare theories ever advanced against the Truth. He decided to take the “bull by the horns” and throw out all baptismal formulas, Trinitarian and Oneness, and reduce Christian Baptism to a wordless initiation! His desperation to rid the Church of the New Testament Formula of Jesus Name seems to know no bounds. He is even willing to sacrifice the cherished Trinitarian formula as the price to pay. He has, so to speak, decided to untie the Gordian Knot by cutting it in two! Nettled by the truth of the New Testament, and cornered by church history, he opts to throw out not only “the baby with the bathwater” but the bathtub also! Hear Him as he boldly goes “where angels fear to tread.” We read, “Because the semitic phrase ‘in the name of’ could have such a wide variety of meanings, there is no more reason to take the Acts phrase ‘in the Name of Jesus’ as an audible liturgical formula than there is to think that the Matthean formula was to be taken like this” (page 111). I know his Trinitarian friends are sweating now. Couldn’t any of them have stopped him before this? We were tipped off something novel was on the way by his “semitic phrase” opener. This he seems to use to introduce his more shocking statements (Compare 111 and 113).

Better no formula, than “Jesus’ Name” is his motto. We have often pointed out to Trinitarians in the past that if the phrase “in the name of Jesus” is interpreted to only mean “by the authority of” and thereby eliminated as a spoken formula, then the same interpretation must be applied to “in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost” and that too would be eliminated as a formula. The point we were trying to make was that the whole interpretation was wrong in the first place. Most Trinitarians have seen it that way once it was pointed ,out, and abandoned that interpretation rather than part with their formula. Dr. Boyd on the other hand has decided to use this incorrect interpretation (as I will prove) to eliminate both formulas! Of course to do this he flies in the face of two thousand years of church practice, and proposes something even the Arian heretics dared not try. Augustine, Tertullian, Aquinas, the Cappodocians and every other “great saint” of the church he so admires would curse him for it (and some like the “great reformer” John Calvin, would burn him for it!)

THE EFFECT OF THE “NO NAME” DOCTRINE

One can only imagine the effect such a “pro-choice”, renegade theory would unleash in the Church World if it were taken seriously (which, Thank God, no one does!). Ministers would begin tailor fitting their own baptismal formulas to meet the occasion. Compromises would be made to the point of lunacy. I can almost hear some modern day “love is all that matters” preacher standing on the shore line in California (why is it always California?) with his new convert:

Minister: And what say ye of the “Faith once delivered to the saints?” Candidate: I think its neat, man!
Minister: And what think ye of the Christ?
Candidate: He was cool, like really cool, you follow?
Minister: Yes, Yes, I follow, “Upon the confession of your Faith
I now baptize you ink the neatness of Christianity and
the coolness of Christ. Amen!”

Don’t think I am exaggerating or being ludicrous for the sake of argument. Today’s ever adapting, relativistic church, needs little encouragement to fly off into such “meaningful” excursions into “restructuring.” The “wild blue yonder” is always beckoning them!

OPENING PANDORA’S BOX

Dr. Boyd would open such a Pandoras box, and rob baptism of any fixed scriptural significance, just to fulfill some strange obsession against Oneness and anything related too it. His “latest thing down the tubes” theory is as unacceptable as it is bizzare -and totally unnecessary. I had once heard of a Pastor in the midwest who pronounced the baptismal formula in “unknown tongues” so as to avoid any confrontation over which formula was correct! And I thought that would never be topped in my lifetime. But I am afraid that iii this category, Dr. Boyd sweeps away- an Oscar for Best Performance.

IS THE FORMULA VERBAL?

What he is saying through his “Semitic phrase” arguments is simply that when the phrase “in the name of Jesus Christ” occurs in Acts it does not represent something verbal or actually uttered. It is rather a saccharine like atmosphere or state of mind: “When it is said that certain believers were baptized ‘in the Name of the Lord Jesus,’ this need mean nothing more than what is meant by giving a cup of cold water to someone ‘in the name of a ,disciple”‘ (Boyd, p.144). Somehow, Dr. Boyd, we feel there’s more at stake here than a cup of cold water! He goes on: “It merely means that baptism
‘for the forgiveness of sins’ derives its significance and beauty from the person of Jesus Christ to whom it centrally points” (p. 144). And all this without saying his name; you just point, don’t talk! In fact he says there was no evidence before the fourth century “that the words spoken over a candidate at baptism were any big deal.” (p. 145). No big deal, you see, just say what you want; lets get it over with!

Thank God we are not left to his interpretation, but we have the record, for again “it is written”!!

PROOF OF VERBAL FORMULA

Does “in the name of Jesus” mean to verbally pronounce it? It certainly does! Here is the proof:

The disciples were commanded to heal the sick and cast out devils in “Jesus Name” (Mark 16:17-18). How did they use the Name? Verbally! “Then Peter said, Silver and Gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6). It was quite a “big deal” for that poor lame man, for he went into the temple “walking, and leaping, and praising God.” (v.8). Does Dr. Boyd suppose it would have been just as effective if Peter and John had just pointed up to heaven, silently, and smiled, until the lame man understood the “significance and beauty” of it all? The Apostles felt differently; they uttered the Name!

Another case comes to mind. This one involving the demon possession of a certain damsel. “But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to cane out of her.” (Acts 16:18). It must have been a “big deal” for the demon, for “he came out the same hour.” And it was a verbally uttered formula that did it.

When they prayed “in Jesus Name” they said it. The apostolic prayer in Acts 4 concludes “that signs and wonders may be done by the name of the holy child Jesus” (Acts 4:30); and “when they had prayed the place was shaken where they were assembled together ” (v.31). Whether this was “significant and beautiful” I cannot tell, but it certainly was powerful! If healing “in Jesus Name” was verbal, and if expelling demons “in Jesus Name” was verbal, and if praying “in Jesus Name” was verbal, Why does Dr. Boyd insist baptism “in Jesus Name” was not? I prefer the scriptural examples, to his “Semitic theories.”

SCHOLARS TESTIFY TO VERBAL FORMULA

Now for the testimony of Greek Scholarship. Arndt and Gingrich point out that the phrase “in the Name of” (in to onomati) used with God or Jesus means in most cases “with mention of the Name, while naming or calling on the name” (William F. Arndt and F. Wilbur Gingrich, A Greek Lexicon of The New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, p. 572). The same authorities also mention that the verb “called” (epikoleo) in Acts 15:17 (“all the Gentiles upon whom my name is called”) means: “someone’s name is called over someone to designate the latter as property of the former” (p. 572). This same verb “called” is used in James 2:7 which says: “Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by which ye are called?” The Amplified Bible’s Commentary states that this is “the Name of Christ invoked at baptism” (The Amplified Bible, p. 360).

Dr-Gore writes in his thoroughly researched history of early church practice: “And the shelter of that name belongs to those only who have had it invoked upon them in baptism and have received the Spirit of Jesus within them.” (Gore, Reconstruction, p. 640).

Dr. Armitage Robinson says: “It is plain that the phrase ‘in the name of’ indicates some solar utterance by the accompaniment of which the washing of water is made to be no ordinary bath, but the sacrament of baptism’ (Ibis n, Ephesians., p. 234). He further states: “It is probable then that the ‘name’ here referred to (in I Cor. 1:13-ed) is the solemn mention of the Lord Jesus Christ in connection with the rite of baptism whether as the confession made by the candidate or as the formula employed by the ministrant” (Robinson, Ephesians, p.134).

PICK A PHRASE, ANY PHRASE!

Everything draws to the same conclusion,–(Bible, Scholarship, Linguistics, Reason) something had to have been said, something was said, and that something was the Name of Jesus. But this will not do for Dr. Boyd. On pages 142 to 143 he serves up no less than eight different interpretations of what “in the name of” could mean; what he calls a “wide variety of applications:’ And we’ll see how wide! It could mean: “in relation to,” “with respect to its intentions,” “with an obligation towards,” “in the authority of” or “a principal of behavior.” It could even mean “with a view towards” “in the light of” or “in appreciation of.” Take one of them, or two of them, any of them, all of them, or none of them! Just so you don’t verbally utter the name of Jesus. You have quite a selection so don’t be hasty. If one “doesn’t get you out of it” the next one will. Plenty of griss for this mill! It seems strange indeed that any Christian would expend so much energy trying to prevent the Name of Jesus from being spoken.

APOSTOLIC APPLICATION

“How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets, that prophesy lies, yea they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart; which think to cause my people to forget my name by their dreams, which they tell every man to his neighbor…” Jer. 23.26-27 .

The Apostles certainly didn’t have this attitude. They were commanded to “speak henceforth to no man in this name” (Acts 4:17) and that they “should not teach in this name” (Acts 5:28). They certainly were doing more than just “pointing” or “thinking!’ They must have been wielding that name verbally. Saul’s goal was to destroy “them that call on his name” (Acts 9:21). He must have heard something! When the Jewish rulers demanded of Peter and John “By what power or by what name have ye done this? ” (Acts 4:7), Peter answered for all Oneness believers when he verbally said, “By the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead.” (v.10) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

PHANTOM FORMULAS

Thus in an attempt to eliminate any formula for baptism, Dr. Boyd has gotten his feet all tangled up in flight. He first maintained that there was a “small amount of evidence in favor of the Jesus Name formula” (p. 141). Then he refers to third century references to “the Trinitarian formula or mode for baptism ‘along side’ the supposed ‘Jesus Only formula'” (p. 141). Next he finds the Trinitarian formula becomes “the dominant formula for baptism” from the beginning of the Second Century on. (p. 142). And finally ending on the high note that there really was no formula after all, Trinitarian or Oneness! (p. 143). These formulas are very ethereal- first they exist “side by side”, then one is “dominant” over the other, and then we learn they weren’t there at all! Under what lack of evidence must a writer labor who resorts to such an argument? Phantom formulas that appear and disappear like apparitions in the night!

Please Login to Comment.

Subscribe Today!

Archives