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BAPTISM “IN THE NAME OF JESUS,” OR “IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER, SON, AND HOLY SPIRIT?”
Jesus is God Himself, therefore He commanded His sincerely believing disciples to be baptized in “the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,” which is also the Name of Jesus, The Godhead of the Bible. Paul explained in Col. 2:9-10, “In Him [Jesus] dwells [present tense] all the fullness of The Godhead bodily...” In the context of the whole New Testament, the Man Jesus Christ Himself is the sum or total of The Inseparable Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit! Heb. 1:1-3 explains that during the Old Testament dispensation, God spoke to His physical nation Old Israel through human prophets like Moses and Elijah, but in the New Testament/Covenant age, “God has spoken to us, [His spiritual nation of believers] by His Son, [Who did not simply ‘speak’ God’s Word, but always was and will be God and God’s Word Himself,] Whom He appointed Heir and lawful Owner of all things… Being the brightness of God’s glory and the express Image of His Person, [when we look at the Man Jesus, we see The Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit;] upholding all things by the Word of His power…” (Jn. 1:1-3; Heb 1:1-14.)
However, Modulist Oneness Pentecostals, (or Jesus Only teachers,) reject the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as One God. They say the Father is God, and Jesus and the Holy Spirit were only ‘attributes’ or visible signs of God like wind and fire. This is why they disobey Jesus’ commandment to baptize disciples in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Instead, they baptize in the “Name of Jesus Only.”
We can be certain that all the instances, described in the Book of Acts, where believers were water baptized “in the Name of Jesus,” referred to Jesus’ commandment in Mt. 28:19-20. Hence, the early believers all baptized in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, which is ‘the Name of Jesus.’ This is so because the One God, The Godhead of the Bible Himself, (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) is completely inseparable, omnipresent, all knowing, and almighty.
Heb. 7:3 testifies to the following immovable fact, “[Melchizedek, king of Salem or the One God, “The (Biblical) Godhead,” is] without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made [to look, in a physical sense,] like the Son of God [or the Man Jesus Christ…]” All these and other contextual verses prove that Jesus did not, and in fact could not leave the “complete, indwelling fullness of the Godhead” (Father and Holy Spirit) in heaven when He took on human form. God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is inseparably everywhere in the universe at the same time.
Therefore, The Godhead is and always will be One God, and His Name is Jesus!
And Jesus Himself commanded us to baptize sincere believers “in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.”
Should we be dunked three times in baptism or only once?
Scriptural baptism occurs by a short submersion of the disciple in ordinary water, (a river, the sea, swimming pool, bath, etc.) and it occurs once with the context of the following the words, “On your own confession of Jesus Christ as your personal God, Lord, Savior and Redeemer, and at your own request, I baptize you in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!” (Mt. 28:19-20.)
Jesus, the True God of the Bible, is One God: The Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. As said, God can never be separated into three distinctly different people, ‘persons,’ or gods. However, many Pentecostals baptize believing disciples, submerging them three times in water - once for the Father, once for the Son, and once for the Holy Spirit as if the Godhead can be separated into three gods.
Of course, this is impossible. Jesus is One God: the inseparable Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
THE LITTLE CHILDREN – WHAT IS SCRIPTURAL?
Jesus declared in Mark 10:13-16 and Mt. 19:13-15 that little children, who are too young to know right from wrong and who are therefore not accountable for their actions, naturally belong to Him. Jesus never ‘christened’ or ‘baptized’ little children; He laid His hands on them and blessed them – despite their background or ‘church-affiliation.’ Of course, older children or teenagers, who can really understand the Gospel of Christ and the responsibilities of discipleship in Him, and choose to accept Jesus as their personal God, Lord, and Savior, are a different matter.
All that is necessary for the babies or young children of sincere believers is to be dedicated to God, “to lay hands on them and to bless them.”
To ‘baptizo’ little ones is completely out of the question, as the real baptism means to submerge genuine believers completely into water as a symbol of their Scriptural and personal rebirth in Christ. As said, babies cannot believe, understand Jesus’ Gospel, repent from religion, and accept and follow Jesus according to God’s Word. Hence, all those who were christened in an unscriptural, so-called ‘saving’ ritual, were definitely not baptised at all. They were merely incorporated into a political-religious order; an idolatrous system. As in all unscriptural practises, this religious ritual contains no spiritual value, Holy-Spirit-power or the blessing of God. It merely brings people into bondage to a manmade, cultic system of religiosity without the truth of Jesus Christ, (Mt. 22:29; Mark 7:13; 2 Pet. 2:19.)
Jesus Himself promised in Mark 16:15-18, [Old Bible translation,] “He who believes and [then] is [water] baptized, will be saved… And these signs [1 Cor. 12:5-11; 14:22-25,) will follow those who believe [and was baptized as born again believers.] In My Name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means harm them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.’ [Concerning the sprinkling of babies in a so-called ‘saving,’ ‘holy-spirit filled’ sacrament: why don’t one see any of these babies (or adults) perform any of these signs, which are gifts of the Holy Spirit that “follow” His disciples, as described in the truth of the Bible - and which have never ceased since that day at Pentecost until now?]
No wonder all the Holy Spirit’s miracles and powerful gifts (or signs) have completely disappeared from those who practice the ‘baptism of regeneration’ and other false church norms and forms. Their clergy (the clergy of the Dutch and other Reformed churches too,) actually had the audacity to preach that, like Jesus’ true water baptism, these miracles and gifts of the Holy Spirit have ‘ceased,’ because they were ‘only for that time while the apostles were alive!’
No, none of the Scriptural gifts or signs of the Holy Spirit have ‘ceased’ at all. Sadly, Charismatic churches have perverted His power and signs through their many false doctrines and occult practices, but the Holy Spirit of the Bible remains “the same yesterday, today and for all eternity!” What happened to these church systems that they do not manifest the gifts of the Holy Spirit, is that they have grieved the Holy Spirit and quenched His Scriptural work and power by denying it all, although they supposedly confess Him in their dogmas. They have literally ‘snuffed out’ His work in their assemblies through their pagan, Christianized sacraments, which substitute the Scriptural atonement, truth, and power of the Lord Jesus Christ! Thus, the Holy Spirit has written ‘Ichabod’ over them and departed from their churches.
THOSE WHO BAPTIZE THEMSELVES SCRIPTURALLY MUST CONTEND WITH THE HATRED OF SATAN AND HIS DISCIPLES
We are and remain spiritually alive only through personal faith in Christ, and we can be certain that obedience to the real water baptism carries the special anointing and power of the Holy Spirit, (Mt. 3:16-17.) Therefore, the thief and father of all lies (Jn. 10:10,) never lets go of a soul without a real and rowdy fight. Jesus said a servant is not above his master. If Jesus Himself “was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil” after His water baptism, all earnest believers, once baptized, will have to face the temptation to turn back to the easy, religious world, which they declared they have left behind. Such temptation can be strong. I have seen many believers, once on fire for the Lord; turn their backs on Christ to return to their oppressing spouses, family members, and their dark but nonresistant world of church religion. Better then that such double-minded believers never accepted Jesus, than to fail this first and most important test, to “crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame,” (Heb. 6:1-6.)
This is the real, Scriptural ‘baptism of fire;’ the incredible test(s), which Jesus warned, every true disciple would have to face: persecution for righteousness sake and especially for obedience to the truth of God’s Word, (Mt. 3:11; Lu. 12:50.) The Scriptural baptism of fire is not Jesus’ baptism with the Holy Spirit or the so-called “evidence” of speaking in tongues “with the laying on of hands.” This strange ‘tongues-baptism of fire’ is not found in the true context of the Bible, or in the practical implementation of the gifts of the Holy Spirit of the Bible, (1 Cor. 14:22; Mark 16:16-17.)
The following is an extract from the book, ‘Relationship Versus Religion:’
“We all heard how Catholicism persecuted its Calvinist ‘heretics’ of Roman Catholicism. It is enlightening, however, to note that during the 16th century, the German Kaiser aided Martin Luther’s Protestant Reformation, which was born directly from Catholicism, with his troops. The Kaiser’s motive, naturally, was similar to that of his predecessors - he establishing this ‘new’ Christianity to further his political goals.
From time to time, Luther, Calvin and their contemporaries joined forces with their Roman Catholic ‘enemies’ to rid the world of those who opposed their many unbiblical, Roman-Catholic inherited doctrines. Just as the Roman Catholic crusades during the Dark and Middle Ages, their inexpressibly violent crusades spread through Europe like wildfire, as Catholicism and Protestantism both contended for the hand of the reigning monarch in each country.
As early as 1527, Luther declared the death penalty for all those who obeyed Jesus’ commandment to baptise His disciples or adult followers, (Mt. 28:19.)
The Baptists stated that Jesus died for every person and the human spirit must be reborn through a personal and willing acceptance of Christ, (Jn. 1:12-13; 3:3-5.) Once the human spirit is reborn, baptism by submersion is a symbol of the believer’s inward, spiritual regeneration. Hence, Scriptural baptism only pertains to sincere, adult believers – Acts 8:36,37,38. [The vital verse, Acts 8:37, was omitted by the NU.]
Although the Baptist’s interpretation of the Word did not remain pure throughout the centuries, they were massacred because they also believed the true “church” [actually the true body of Christ] is a gathering of sincere believers, united through their faith in Christ and through their obedience to the Word, (1 Cor. 3:16-17.) They rejected the deception that the body of Christ consists of ‘predestined’ people who ‘inherit’ salvation. Parallel to this ran their Biblical belief that true believers should reject all state-involvement in the “affairs of God.” They saw the body of Christ as God’s master plan for salvation, (2 Tim. 2:3; Jn. 18:36.) They taught, the assemblies of believers, as defined in the Book of Acts, fell under the rule of Caesar Constantine and complete restoration of primitive life in Christ should be the Body’s only form. As the Baptists rejected the so-called rejuvenating power of the Catholic/Protestant christening, they were unjustly called “Ana-Baptists,” which means they were christened as babies, but as adults they supposedly baptised themselves ‘again.’
Both the Vatican and the Protestant Reformers hated this Scriptural truth. Accordingly, Luther and Calvin joined forces with the German Kaiser and their Roman Catholic ‘enemies’. Together they turned their fury on the Baptists, who ‘kept on interfering’ with their goal of worldwide Christian union and political control, and marked the Baptists for extermination, (Jn. 18:36; 2 Tim. 2:3-4.)
During the battle of FRANKENHAUSEN in 1525, Luther and the Kaisers murdered 100,000 farmers – 100,000 people in one battle, because the German government and the Protestant church would not grant them their God-given right to serve Jesus Christ in spirit and in truth, and to proclaim His real Gospel.
Servetus is only ONE of John Calvin’s victims, whom he callously tortured to death on a fiery stake.
With the battle of MÜNSTER in 1535, Catholics and Lutherans marched against the Baptists and murdered hundreds more in cold blood.
The Catholic/Protestant sword of Christianity drenched 16th century Germany in human blood. Europe followed; and eventually, its razor-sharp blade scourged islands, the Americas, Australia, Africa and even Asia.
Yet, Christians still admire these unscrupulous persecutors and murderers of thousands of martyrs; even ascribing the title of ‘father’, ‘reverend’ or ‘minister’ to them, (Rev. 16:5-6; 19:2.)
Generation after generation, mesmerised by the false ‘power’ of both Roman Catholicism and Reformed Protestantism, followed their soul-consuming doctrines, (Rom. 1:32.) Wilfully, either through a lack of knowledge or through a lack of love for the truth, the descendants of these callous crusaders continue to associate themselves with the atrocities of their spiritual ancestors; kneeling at the altars and pulpits that were and still are being soaked in the blood of the innocent.
‘BAPTIZED FOR THE DEAD;’ WHAT DOES IT MEAN? (1 Cor. 15:29.)
Uncontextual application of verses, and the two different Testaments/Dispensations/Covenants of the Bible, (Eph 1:10; 1:1-6,) is where all false doctrine originates. Many churches still “baptize [themselves] for the dead,” and some actually baptize the deceased themselves because of this once-off verse in the Bible, (1 Cor. 15:29,) which states, “What will they do who are baptized for the dead, if the dead do not rise at all…”
In this passage, Paul is not saying we must baptize the deceased to inherit eternal life. He is defending the truth of Scriptural salvation, water baptism, Jesus’ resurrection, and the resurrection of deceased believers at Jesus’ return, because the Judaist sect of the Sadducees did not believe in the resurrection. Yet, they were, (as their spiritual descendants still do,) baptizing themselves ‘for the deceased.’
In verse 30, Paul asked, “Why stand in [danger] every hour… [bringing the truth to all those who believe false doctrine,] if the deceased is not raised [incorruptible] at Jesus’ return, [with incorruptible human bodies, similar to Jesus’ glorified body, which could appear through walls, eat physically, and ascend into heaven?]”
So, at first glance, it seems Paul was referring to those churches who still ‘stand in for the deceased’ to identify with their church and ‘suffer persecution,’ supposedly just like “those church members before them did; willing to die for Christ,” but he was not. These churches baptize themselves for the dead because, [other than the Sadducee sect of Paul’s day,] they believe that “resurrection is real.” This ‘standing in for the deceased’ doctrine points to just another unbiblical ‘baptism rite,’ not to Jesus’ Scriptural water baptism or His “baptism with fire,” (Mt. 20:22-23.)
1 Cor. 15:30, Paul wasn’t referring to those who ‘stand in’ for the deceased through their baptism for the deceased, to willingly make themselves into ‘martyrs.’ The Sadducees of Paul’s day did not believe in the resurrection at all. Where Paul asked in 1 Cor. 15:29, “What will they do who are baptized for the dead, if the dead are not raised at all? Why then are they baptized for the dead?” It seems even Paul was baffled by this baptism, as it could not accomplish anything. The Sadducees did not believe that the deceased will be raised at all — so what could be the point of their baptism, even if it could have had an effect on the dead? Even if their dead would be raised, this baptism for the dead would still be totally worthless, as it cannot change anything for the deceased, or for those who baptized themselves for them or in their place as “the dead [are either in heaven or in hell,] and knows nothing; they have no more part in anything done in this life,” (Eccl. 9:5-6.)
The suffering Paul refers to in verse 30 is his own suffering and 'dying daily' to sin and self-centeredness, (v. 30.) He actually asked, 'Why am I suffering so much (as described in v. 31-33,) and why do I die daily to sin if there is no resurrection, (he was suffering for righteousness and truth, like all true believers do,) for if there is no resurrection, our faith (and suffering) is in vain and we can live like those who have no hope in the resurrection at Christ's return. (1 Cor. 15:30-34,) "Do not keep evil company, which corrupts your good [understanding of the truth.] For if the dead will not be raised, Christ was not raised. Then, our faith is futile. Let us then eat and drink and enjoy life in sin, for tomorrow we die [without any consequences and hope of the resurrection.]”
It is confounding that people allow themselves to be 'baptized for the departed,' seeing that we cannot communicate or reach the deceased in any way. As said, they are either in heaven or in hell; their time to worry about things on this earth is over, (Eccl. 9:5-6.) I think its mainly because people so desperately want to know that their departed loved ones are in heaven, but in reality, their loved ones also had to choose eternal life in Christ before they died. It's as Paul said, why would he suffer for Jesus’ truth and die to sin if the dead will not be raised incorruptibly? If they are not raised, Jesus was not raised, and our faith means nothing. We can baptize ourselves 'for' them or “in their place” as much as possible, but we will never change anything about the eternal fate of the deceased.
In baptizing themselves ‘for the deceased,’ the Latter Day Saints, (‘church fathers’ of the ‘Assemblies,’) who came from ancient Mormonism, stated, “Baptism for the dead is central to Jesus’ Gospel, because He said, “The dead shall hear My voice and live…” [Jesus was not talking about the deceased; He was referring to those in spiritual death without Him; not in ‘hell’ after death, but in ‘Hades,’ the grave.] The Latter Day Saints, as other Sadducees, still practice substitute or proxy baptism by immersion or sprinkling a living person on behalf of someone who died, like family members who never accepted, or got the chance to accept the doctrines of that church, and even for those who refused to accept Jesus.
Furthermore, there are some in the Apostolic churches and elsewhere, who actually baptize their deceased, because they believe the ‘power of the water’ or the “water god,” applied by their ‘anointed’ clergy, can ‘save’ the deceased after death.
Roman Catholics and others still practice ‘death bed baptism’ by sprinkling the dying, as they did to their great church father, Caesar Constantine on his death bed. However, other churches’ members are also baptized ‘for’ deceased relatives outside the church who refused, or never got the chance ‘to be saved.’
Still others, with the corpse still warm in the bed, get under the bed, answering the questions of a priest concerning salvation “for” the deceased, supposedly accepting Christ and then being sprinkled-baptized [some dunk these stand-ins in water] on behalf of the dead person.
What “foolish faith!” Everyone is “destined to die once, and thereafter the judgment,” (Heb. 9:27.) God gave us all the incredible privilege to choose our eternal destiny. Personally, while minister to the dying, I have not witnessed a single ‘death bed’ salvation. God gave us a whole lifetime to make our decisions, and He Alone is the Judge of those, who seemingly did not have the chance to know and accept Him. All our efforts to ‘save’ our loved ones and church members stem from senseless faith, because only those who decidedly believe in, accept, and follow Jesus, belong to Him for all eternity, (Jn. 1:12-13; 3:16-17.)
Repent from false doctrine and accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior
Casting Lots to Determine the Will of God for a Particular Situation — is it still valid under the New Covenant?