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Ask The Pastor

March 27, 2003

Hi Eric,

Good to hear from you.

> My question is, when did the baptism formula change?

There is no history on when baptism changed. It seems that as long as early Christianity was still in the matrix of Judaism, baptism would have continued name of Jesus. Early Jewish believers transferred everything that pertained to Yhwh in the former testament, to the Lord Jesus Himself. The most viable record is in Acts. I think that the change took place largely among Gentile conversions. Gentiles did not have the same understanding as did the earlier Jewish believers.

> Also another question, the Didache is seen as a early church document
> (sometimes contested for however) and it shows baptism in the titles
> (Matthew 28:19).

The Didache cannot be fixed as to its writing. However it is quite early. (After the apostles.)

> To me it seems that it was baptism in Matthew 28:19 and not in just
> Jesus name. Of course we baptize in the name of the Father, and of the
> Son, and the Holy Spirit because Christ commanded it... It was in His
> name!

When Jesus said to baptize in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, His Jewish disciples understood what He was saying. They connected this statement with "all authority" now resting in Jesus. The name above every name in the former testament was YHWH. The apostles knew that God had placed Himself in the name of Jesus.

But all of this has to be qualified in regard to those coming to Jesus. For anyone who has called upon the name of Jesus in the sense of saving faith, their water baptism is valid, regardless of what the minister may say over them. It is not what the minister says, it is what the baptismal candidate says.

> "Since it was discovered in a monastery in Constantinople and
> published by P. Bryennios in 1883, the Didache or Teaching of the
> Twelve Apostles has continued to be one of the most disputed of early
> Christian texts.

It will always be disputed. The Didache was more likely an early Church confessional. As for it being from the apostles themselves, this would hardly be the case.


Bro. Buddy Martin - Ask the Pastor

Lawrence "Buddy" Martin

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