The Father's Name
Do We Have the Father's Name? In the book of Revelation we read a remarkable
prophecy about those who have the Father's name.
"And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Zion, and with him a hundred
forty and four thousand, having His
written in their foreheads."
When does a Christian receive the Father's name? Are we born with it? Do we take
it on at the resurrection? How and when does a converted person acquire the
The responsibility for those of us who would seek to understand the truth of
scripture, particularly the very words of Jesus Christ, is an awesome one
indeed. The Church of God has long known that the Authorized Version of the
Bible contains spurious language. An example we all remember is 1 John 5:7 which
contains the Trinitarian insertion - "the Father, the Word and the Holy
The apostasy that has come to the full since the death of Herbert W
Armstrong, the twentieth century Church of God leader, has brought renewed
attacks on every facet of true doctrine. Some men are saying, "We will not
baptize the way Herbert W Armstrong baptized." To bolster their contention they
even bring into question the Holy Bible itself.
The absolute doctrinal authority of the Bible itself must be upheld. Those men
reason that since non-scriptural material found its way into the Authorized
Version of the Bible, similar sounding material must be removed. Thankfully,
many ancient manuscripts remain in existence which pre-date the Authorized King
James Version of the Bible, and which are able to authenticate Scripture. Those
ancient manuscripts do not contain the material added in 1 John 5:7 No man is
permitted to pick and choose verses they would like to delete.
"Ye shall not
unto the word which I command
you, neither shall ye
ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I
There are serious spiritual consequences for violation of God's clear
instructions not to tamper with the Holy Scriptures.
"For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this
book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues
that are written in this book: And if any man
shall take away from the words of the book
of this prophecy, God shall
take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from
the things which are written in this book."
The word "Name" carries a number of different connotations. It sometimes means
"authority," as in: "Stop in the name of the law!" It can mean reputation, as
in: "He has a good name." It can mean first name or family name. A father's son
carries his sir-name.
When Jesus Christ commanded His disciples to baptize men and women into or in
the NAME of the "Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, " He meant that they
should baptize them into the "NAME OF GOD." A Christian receives the Father's
name at baptism. It is the same name that Jesus, the Son of God, possesses. At
baptism, a convert is also baptized into the Spirit of God - the spiritual life
of God. "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body... and have
been all made to drink into one Spirit." (1Co 12:13) At baptism, we become
children of God - possessing the Father's name.
be a Father unto you,
and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty."
A correct baptism includes: Baptism into the Father's name, baptism into Jesus
Christ's name (same name), and baptism into the Spirit (same spiritual life as
God - "God is Spirit." (John 4:24).
When we began our physical life we took on our dad's name. At baptism and the
receiving of God's Holy Spirit we begin to put on God's spiritual life. The
night before He died, Jesus prayed for us. To be kept in the Father's
name - we must already have the Father's name.
"And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to
Holy Father, keep through thine own name
those whom thou hast given
me, that they may be one, as we are."
An old heresy of baptizing, "In the Name of Jesus Only," which was addressed by
Herbert W Armstrong in 1948 has again come to the fore. The traditional teaching
of the Church of God with regard to baptism was given in the booklet: All
About Water Baptism 1948 in a chapter by that name: In Name of Jesus
Only pg. 7 (1972 edition)
"Since some today are being baptized over again "in the name of Jesus ONLY" in
order to eliminate the Father, and the Holy Spirit, this should be considered
here. The contention of these people is that this passage in Matthew 28:19 is
the only place in the Bible where the names of the Father and the Holy Spirit
are commanded. They argue that a biblical command must be established "in the
mouth of two or more witnesses," and since they claim there is but this one
witness to this command, it must be rejected. All other passages mention
only the name of Jesus.
The explanation is that two or more witnesses are required only in the
case of HUMAN testimony -- where one accuses another. That instruction does not
apply to the divine Witness, as inspired by the Holy Spirit, and to assume it
does is surely close to blasphemy against the Holy Spirit! On the contrary, "ALL
scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable ...." And, THE
SCRIPTURE CANNOT BE BROKEN! If you can break, disprove, reject, or throw out
this one scripture, you can reject all the rest!
In this passage, the word translated "in" should properly be translated
"into." The meaning, then, is that repentant believers are baptized
INTO God the Father, and into Christ the Son, and into the Holy Spirit. But the
one who plunges the new believer under the water performs the act IN THE NAME OF
-- that is, by authority of, JESUS CHRIST. Why?
Because Jesus said "ALL POWER" -- and that includes all authority -- "is given
unto me in heaven and in earth." He has ALL authority! Either we do it by His
authority, or else we are doing it without any authority." Not Baptized
into a Denomination pg. 11 (1972 edition)
"Notice carefully, too -- we are "BAPTIZED INTO JESUS CHRIST" (verse 3, above),
or, as Jesus expressed it in Matthew 28:19, into the Father, Son, and Holy
Spirit -- NOT INTO SOME CHURCH ORGANIZATION OR DENOMINATION." In the BAPTISM
CEREMONY that has been used by the church for half of a century it is stated in
part, "I now baptize you, not into any sect or denomination of this world..."
In Lesson 25 of the 58 Lesson Bible Correspondence Course we read:
1. What further instruction does Christ give His ministers concerning baptism?
COMMENT: Many have misunderstood this important scripture. Let's understand
exactly what it means.
In Matthew 28:19 the original Greek word translated "in" is "eis", and actually
means "into." Therefore, this verse should be translated, "... baptizing them
INTO THE NAME of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy
In other words, when a person is baptized and receives God's Spirit, he becomes
the begotten SON of God -- God places HIS OWN NAME on the newly baptized
believer! He now carries the name of GOD. He belongs to God. He is God's SON!
This scripture simply means we are baptized or immersed INTO the DIVINE FAMILY
NAME CALLED "GOD"! And it is done "in the name" -- by the AUTHORITY -- "OF Jesus
At present, the literal spiritual Family of God consists only of the Father and
the Son, Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit is the divine nature and power of the God
Family -- not a "third person" as some erroneously assume.
When Jesus told His disciples to baptize people in or into the NAME of the
"Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,” surely He meant that they should baptize them
into the "NAME OF GOD."
The contrary argument against our long practiced form of baptism appears to be:
Because there is no specific record in the Bible that the disciples baptized "in
the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit", then they never
did so. If that is the case, then the conclusion can only be that Christ never
instructed them to do so.
Therefore, it must also be concluded that: Matt 28:19 is NOT an accurate record
of precisely what Jesus Christ said and the verse is, therefore, spurious.
The "argument of silence" is used in this instance. Those who would change
baptism argue, since there is no example of the disciples actually using the
Matt 28:19 formula, then the disciples never baptized the way we do today. To
bolster their argument, they give Matt 29:19 the disparaging title of "a
Trinitarian formula." Ample evidence exists that the apostles did baptize in the
"name of the Lord".
What we need to consider closely is exactly what this statement, "Baptism
in the name of the Lord," really entails.
Jesus Christ, in two instances, told us exactly which authority and name He came
"I am come in my Father's name,
and ye receive me not"
"Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in
my Father's name, they bear witness of me...
"I and my Father are one."
In practice, the disciples did baptize, "in the name of the Lord,"
meaning the Father. The term, "Lord," does not refer to Jesus Christ
"...Then answered Peter, Can any man forbid water, that these should not be
baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? And he commanded
them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry
certain days." (Acts 10:46-48)
The Greek word for Lord, which is invariably used in this and similar instances,
is according to Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, (2962) Kurios:
supreme in authority. Kurios has been traditionally
referred to as the "Almighty" within the Church and has usually inferred or
included the being whom we refer to as "The Father".
"Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye
loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for
my Father is greater than I."
In Christ’s own admission, it would follow that the Father is and will remain
the supreme authority into which name the faithful must be
baptized. Unless it can be demonstrated beyond question that Christ did not use
these words, then we cannot and should not accept the significant change in the
administering of baptizing in Jesus' name only.
Lacking the authority to change the Bible - we must not change baptism from the
exact method Jesus commanded of the disciples in Matthew 28:19. A Christian
receives the Father's name at baptism when he is baptized into the
name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy
Spirit. (Matt 28:19)
One last point, "Name" here in Matthew 28:19 is onoma. It is singular,
indicating that the Father, Jesus Christ and us - have one and the same
"The Spirit itself
beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God."