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Bible Commentary Adam Clarke

In the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit?

(Read PDF Version)

Every Roman Catholic, making the sign of the cross, states, "In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit," when they begin a prayer. Christians are baptized using this same phrase. We must ask ourselves, "Did Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, the Prophets, Mark, Luke, John, Peter, Paul etc. etc. ever pray with, baptize in or ever use this phrase, as recorded in the Word of Yahweh? Did Jesus ever pray in this manner?  The answer is, No! Then what premise is this aspect of the Christian Faith based on? One verse, which is Matthew 28:19, "Go ye, therefore, and disciple all the nations, Immersing them into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." The interesting truth is that no one, in the Word of Yahweh, was ever immersed in this manner, or prayed in this manner, which makes the above verse problematic. A verse which was never used by anybody in the Word of Yahweh, should never be a doctrine. Would the Christian faith ever rest on Luke 14:26, which states, "If anyone cometh unto me, and hateth not his own father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brothers, and sisters, further also, even his own life, he cannot be my disciple," even though this also, as Matthew 28:19, is a single verse of scripture? We must set aside the above two verses and practice the hundreds of clear verses that have been given to us, ones that have actually been practiced by the prophets, as recorded in the Word of Yahweh.

This article will not address the Trinity, but rather examine the none implementation of Matthew 28:19 by the Apostles. Peter, on the day of Pentecost,  did not baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit but, "...immersed, in the name of Yahoshua Christ, into the remission of your sins" (Acts 2:38); "And he commanded them in the name of Yahoshua Christ to be immersed" (Acts 10:48). The Apostle Paul did the same in Acts 19:5, which states, "And, when they heard this, they were immersed into the name of the Lord Yahoshua;" " Or know ye not that, we, as many as were immersed into Christ" (Rm. 6:3); "The Christ is divided! Was, Paul, crucified for you? Or, into the name of Paul, were ye immersed" (1 Cor. 1:13)? The evidence is conclusive that baptizing in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit never existed in the Word of Yahweh but rather, people were immersed in the name of Yahoshua Christ!  

Did the prophets, apostles or Christ ever pray in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit? No but rather they prayed to Yahweh:

Nu 11:2  ...Moses prayed unto Yahweh, and the fire sank down.
1Sa 8:6  ...So Samuel prayed unto Yahweh.
2Ki 6:17  Then prayed Elisha, and said, O Yahweh!
2Ki 19:15  And Hezekiah prayed before Yahweh...
Jer 32:16  Then prayed I [Jeremiah] unto Yahweh...
Da 9:4  yea I [Daniel] prayed unto Yahweh my God...
Jon 2:1  Then prayed Jonah, unto Yahweh, his God...
Mt 6:9  Thus, therefore pray, ye: Our Father,
Mt 26:42  Again, a second time, departing he [Yahoshua] prayed, saying: My Father!
Ac 26:29  And, Paul, answered—I could pray unto God
2Co 13:7  But we pray unto God,

Other interesting observations are that Father, Son and Holy Spirit are all common nouns rather than names, which are proper nouns, such as are Yahweh and Yahoshua. (There is no proper noun for Holy Spirit.) Should not Paul's epistles have stated, "Favour unto you and peace, from the Father, Son and Holy Spirit rather than from God our Father, and Lord Jesus Christ? Why was the Holy Spirit always left out of his addresses? James should have said, "James, a servant, of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit rather than a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ" (Ja. 1:1). Peter should have said, " Blessed be the Father, Son and Holy Spirit rather than Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ" (1 Pe. 1:3).
If the Apostle Paul could see the Church today, he would say, "O thoughtless Brethrens! Who hath bewitched you?" Well, one of these persons would be Basil of Caesarea, a.k.a, Saint Basil the Great.

Basil (330-379 AD) helped create God the Holy Spirit. His treatise, "On the Holy Spirit," based it's foundation upon a single scripture, which was Matthew 28:19. Giving evidence for this is the following statement, which states, "The baptismal command of the Lord, "go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit ... " (Mat. 28:19), is one of St. Basil’s key scriptural references in establishing the divinity of the Holy Spirit since it comes out of the mouth of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. Who, as a Christian, would question the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ? If the pneumatomachoi refused to rank the Holy Spirit together with the Father and the Son due to a different nature and inferior dignity, how could they deal with this verse wherein the Lord Jesus Christ Himself did not disdain divine fellowship with the Holy Spirit? If they insist that the Holy Spirit is inferior to God the Father and God the Son, are they not disobeying God’s own command? If they will not admit that the arrangement in this verse testifies to their union and fellowship, how could Father, Son and Holy Spirit be united in a better way? If the Lord Jesus Christ Himself did not rank the Holy Spirit with the Father and the Son, let one accuse St. Basil of innovation in ranking the Holy Spirit likewise. But since the Lord did rank the Holy Spirit as divine, let St. Basil be exonerated. Any notion of the natural subordination of the Holy Spirit to the Father and the Son may therefore be discarded since the Holy Spirit is ranked with the Son as is the Son with the Father. So if the Holy Spirit ranks with the Son, He must also rank with the Father since that is logically implied. No one denies the divinity of the Father. Therefore one must admit logically, and on the basis of Matthew 28:19, that the Son and the Holy Spirit also are divine. Therefore this verse establishes both the divine dignity and essence of the Holy Spirit. As noted earlier, St. Basil uses this verse to establish His own doxology based on the logical equivalence of the conjunction and with the preposition with." Thus, although one will never read that "the Holy Spirit is God" in Basil's treatise, one will find numerous statements that "the Holy Spirit partakes of the fullness of divinity. His treatise resulted in, "We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, and Giver of life, who proceeds from the Father; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified." So states the creed employed by the fathers who met in Constantinople in 381. Half a century earlier, at Nicaea in 325, the Holy Spirit had been mentioned almost as an afterthought: "We believe in the Holy Spirit," the original Nicene creed simply stated, and that was all.

So, there we have it, "In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit," is based upon one scripture; a commandment not followed by Peter or Paul, and a phrase not known by any of the prophets and apostles, according to their writings. Praying to Yahweh, as a whole, does not exist in today's Church. Baptizing in the Name of Yahoshua Christ, also, as a whole, does not exist in today's Church. What more needs to be said than what was written concerning the Beroeans, which states, "and, these, were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they welcomed the word with all readiness of mind, daily, searching the Scriptures,—whether these things could be so" (Acts 17:11)!

(When quoting scriptures, from the Rotherham Emphasized Bible New Testament, I will substitute the Hebrew words
Yahoshua (yeh-ho-shoo’- ah) for Jesus, Yahweh and Elohim for God and the LORD and ruah for pneuma (spirit).)

(For footnotes and Appendix A, see PDF version.)


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