HOLY SPIRIT, BAPTISM AND MATTHEW 28:19
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This message was generated by a question emailed to my personal email
C. OLIVARES MAR-13-2007
Reviewing the Catholic version “Biblia del Peregrino” (New Testament, study edition, volume III. Editorial Verbo Divino), particularly the text of Matthew 28:19: “Therefore go and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” There is an explanation at the footnote that mentions: “As consecration rite of baptism you will administrate, with the Trinity explicit invocation (Compare with the formula of Acts 2, 38; 8, 16; 1Corinthianss 1, 13; Galatians 3, 27)...”
The text of Acts 8 says: 14 And the apostles in Jerusalem hearing that Samaria had received the Word of God, they sent Peter and John to them; 15 who when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. 16 For as yet He had not fallen on any of them, they were baptized only in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then they laid their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.
Is this argument reinforcing the idea that the Holy Spirit is a different person of Jesus?
When we are baptized in the name of Jesus, did we receive the Holy Spirit at that time?
Why they had to impose them the hands after baptism?
Thank you for your help, Brother, it will be to building up. Peace
O. MATA MAR-14-2007
My dear Brother:
Before answering your questions, let's review what the Holy Spirit is.
In Catholic, Protestant and other religious movements’ doctrine, the divinity consists in Father, Son and Holy Spirit (trinity). At Holy Spirit, as a divinity, they attribute demonstrations and pronouncements of God: Modern prophecies, visions, screams, dances, health, laughing, crying, languages and so on.
Regarding, the Scriptures show us:
Ephesians 4:30. “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you are sealed until the day of redemption.” The Holy Spirit is of God, not other god in himself.
Luke 24:49. “And behold, I send the promise of My father on you. But you sit in the city of Jerusalem until you are clothed with power from on high.” Jesus promised power from on high. Juan 14:16-17. “And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, so that He may be with you forever, the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive because it does not see Him nor know Him. But you know Him, for He dwells with you and shall be in you.” The Spirit leads to the truth, is the Comforter of God. To the disciples, the Spirit dwelled with them and shall be in them. What does it mean? They already had the Spirit, but he would still be there for demonstration of the power of God. When this was accomplished?
Acts 2:1-4. “And in the fulfilling of the day of Pentecost, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly a sound came out of the heaven as borne along by the rushing of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And tongues as of fire appeared to them, being distributed; and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled of the Holy Spirit, and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” This was accomplished after they received the power of God through the Holy Spirit.
John 16:12-15. “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of Truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth. For He shall not speak of Himself, but whatever He hears, He shall speak. And He will announce to you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will receive of Mine and will announce it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and will announce it to you.” The Holy Spirit also is of Christ, because everything that is of the Father also is of the Son. The Father and the Son are also of the Spirit? Such a thing is not written in the Word, because the Spirit belongs to them.
Acts 6:8. “And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people.” The Holy Spirit does that the servants of God do what is not natural, but spiritual.
How and when is received?
Ephesians 1:12-14. “for us to be to the praise of His glory, who previously had trusted in Christ; in whom also you, hearing the word of truth, the gospel of our salvation, in whom also believing, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the earnest of our inheritance, to the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.” Spirit is received from the moment that we believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, as a seal, a sign of promise. We must note that when we believe, the baptism has not yet happened. At this stage, the Spirit is constituted as an earnest, a sign that God will fulfill His promise, but still depends on the believer do his/her part.
Acts 5:32. “And we are His witnesses of these things. And so also is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey Him.” God gives the Holy Spirit to those who obey Him. In addition to the foregoing, the conversion involves obedience, which is why the Spirit acts on the believer.
Acts 2:38 says: “Then Peter said to them, Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ to remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Peter invites them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, not in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Did Peter break the commandment of the Master? In no way, because Peter was clear that the baptism is in the name of the Lord, because there is not other name (Let's remember what was written in Acts 4:12: “And there is salvation in no other One; for there is no other name under Heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”) When we are baptized, we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit to dwell in us as his temple (1 Corinthians 6:19 “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit in you, whom you have of God? And you are not your own” Note that the Holy Spirit comes from God).
Regarding your question, let’s consider:
In Textus Receptus (Greek) version, in Matthew 28:19 says: “poreuqentej <go> oun <therefore> maqhteusate <teach> panta <all> ta <to> eqnh <nations> baptizontej <baptizing> autouj <them> eij <in> to <the> onoma <name> tou <of> patroj <Father> kai <and> tou <of> uiou <Son> kai <and> tou <of> agiou <Holy> pneumatoj <Spirit>”
In Byzantine (Greek) version, in Matthew 28:19 is written: “poreuqentej <go> maqhteusate <teach> panta <all> ta <to> eqnh <nations> baptizontej <baptizing> autouj <them> eij <in> to <the> onoma <name> tou <of> patroj <Father> kai <and> tou <of> uiou <Son> kai <and> tou <of> agiou <Holy> pneumatoj <Spirit>"
Literally, the Biblia del Peregrino version in Matthew 28:19 is wrong, because it reflects a criteria more than an appropriate version.
Let's analyze the cited texts in the commentary to which you are referring.
Acts 2:38. We have already analyzed.
Acts 8:14-17 says: “And the apostles in Jerusalem hearing that Samaria had received the Word of God, they sent Peter and John to them; who when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. For as yet He had not fallen on any of them, they were baptized only in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then they laid their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.” In this case, however they had been baptized, the power of the Holy Spirit not yet dwelled in them.
The general rule regarding the Holy Spirit is to receive him as an earnest at the time that we believe, but he is received to dwell in us as a temple at the time when we are baptized. The case of believers from Samaria, who did not receive the Holy Spirit after baptism, it is the only exception that the Word records, but this does not override the general rule.
1 Corinthians 1:13: “Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you, or were you baptized in the name of Paul?” Let’s note that in the questions there are 3 important elements in our analysis:
1. Christ is not divided.
2. Paul was not crucified for us. Who was crucified for us? Christ.
3. We were not baptized in the name of Paul. What name? If we relate the previous two questions, the answer is: Christ.
Galatians 3:27: “For as many as were baptized into Christ, you put on Christ.” The baptism into Christ does that we be put on Christ. That does possible that the Holy Spirit dwell in us.
What happens then with Matthew 28:19?
Let's analyze the context (Matthew 28:16-20): “And the eleven disciples went into Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw Him, they worshiped Him. But some doubted. And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, All authority is given to Me in Heaven and in earth. Therefore go and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things, whatever I commanded you. And, behold, I am with you all the days until the end of the world.”
The 11 disciples went into Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw Him, they worshiped Him. In first person, Jesus said him that all authority is given to Him; with that authority He send them to teach all nations, baptizing them and teaching them to observe all things whatever He commanded them.
What is strange in these texts? Jesus talks in first person, but regarding the baptism, He said “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”, which is in third person. Thus, it is not convincing that Jesus had actually said that, because he had spoken in first person: “Therefore go and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of my Father, in my name and of the Holy Spirit”. We have not the original manuscripts, but the Greek texts that already contain the known formula.
None of the apostles ever baptized in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, but only in the name of Jesus Christ.
We follow the example of the apostles.
Answering your three questions, this is my opinion:
1. “Is this argument reinforcing the idea that the Holy Spirit is a different person of Jesus?” Answer: No, that argument is based in a trinity criteria established far from God’s will, because the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son.
2. “When we are baptized in the name of Jesus, did we receive the Holy Spirit at that time” Answer: Yes. All we were baptized in His name, and we already received the Holy Spirit. You and I have that wonderful power (to God be the glory!), because we were baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.
3. “Why they had to impose them the hands after baptism?” Answer: The case of believers from Samaria is the only exception regarding the general rule to be clothed with power after baptism. That exception was only to them, and there is not other case.
I hope this be to help you, Brother of mine.
Peace be with you and your family.