1st Century Baptism

1st Century Baptism


The question EVERY Christian needs to ask themselves is:

How did the Apostles teach?

Because they were those chosen by Jesus to propagate the Gospel message.

So if they didn't have it right when it comes to sound doctrine, no one does.

We happen to find a record of their enacting the doctrines of Jesus in the history book of the 

1st Century Church, the book of Acts.



"I find your study & work (on 1st Century Baptism) to be outstanding. I see research & time well spent in Theological Study with proper discernment with proper methodology in backing up your position & choose to study your work.

With much appreciation, Great Work!"

--Duane Martin, DD, Oneness

"I do agree 100% with your article on baptism with the invocation of the name of the Lord by the person being baptized. I know that people can say that they have called upon Jesus when they repented. However, the scriptures seem very clear that the invocation of the name of Jesus must also be by the one being baptized....While it is unlikely that God will reject baptism in which only the minister invoked the name of Jesus, I have always taught that I would rather be safe than sorry when it comes to full obedience to God's word."

--Steven Ritchie, Apologist, Oneness

" I have examined and reviewed the study by Mark August on 1st Century baptism. I have found his study to be Biblically sound and fully documented. I can see the time and research Mr. August has done to present this subject of 1st Century baptism. I appreciate all his comments and historical research that he presents to show the truth of invoking the name of Jesus Christ in Christian baptism, as practiced by the original Apostles of the first century. Mr. August is to be commended for such scholarship of researching on this most important subject. "

--Bishop D.R. Vestal, PhD, ThD, Oneness,

Chancellor, Cypress Bible Institute

" I have reviewed Mark August’s treatise on First Century Water Baptism and found it to be Biblically accurate, theologically sound, and historically correct. It is a study in Apostolic Praxis that will bless multitudes and is already changing lives, causing them to align themselves with Biblical truth. It is my desire that all of our ministers be equipped with this powerful teaching. It is essential to anyone called to ministry in the 21st-century. " 

--Dr. Larry L Yates, PhD, ThD, DMin, Oneness,

Professor, International Apostolic University

" There is always one that stands out in pursuit of truth that sets us free. I personally find Mark August's expository work as a quintessential example of a true scholar. His work on First Century Baptism and calling on the name of the Lord is outstanding. As you read, have an open mind for in-depth insights. "

--Dr. Lambert Agama, DD, DETh., Trinitarian,

Professor of Expository Theology, South Florida Bible College and Seminary



I would say, the events recorded in the Acts of the Apostles chapter 2 occurred about 30ad.

Matthew 28:19 was written about 70ad.

Matthew was standing side by side in 30ad. There with Peter, at that time, as Peter preached Acts 2:38.

There is no evidence of Matthew being in non agreement with what Peter was preaching in 30 ad.

In fact, the church continued to baptise in Jesus Great Name up until the book of Matthew was written and circulated in about 70ad.

Matthew 28:19 is read by the masses, 40 years AFTER Peter preached in Acts 2.

There is NO evidence to suggest that the 1st Century Church changed their baptismal formula in 70ad. after reading Matthew 28:19. 

In fact, the Church continued to baptise in Jesus Name up until the late 2nd Century, 170 ad., a full 100 years AFTER Matthew 28:19 was written and circulated. 

So lets re-cap:

Jesus taught the Apostles, 25-30ad.

The Apostles taught their students, 30-90ad.

(Jesus Name baptism is exclusive, even AFTER circulation in 70ad. of Matthew 28:19)

The students of The Apostles teach students of their own, etc... 90-170ad.

(Jesus Name Baptism is STILL exclusive until 170ad., Justin Martyr.)

Justin Martyr was the first to baptise in the titles, 170ad., it is worth noting here that evidence exists showing Justin Martyr did also in fact baptize in the Matthew 28:19 formula combined with the Acts 2:38 formula.

It is notable that there exists within ancient writings and SCRIPTURE, evidence (ie: Romans) that suggests the recipient would make a statement of faith before the death ritual of Christian Water Baptism. 

Additionally, It is debated as to if questioning the candidate into statements is historically correct. 

Note: Before the 18th Century the theological consenses was in favor of baptismal regeneration, meaning that baptism is necessary for salvation.

1st Century Baptism also included 


"This appeal may refer especially to the invocation of the Name by the candidate in answer to the baptizer's interrogation as to his acceptance of ex animo of the true allegiance"

-Ref: Hastings Encyclopedia of Religion and EthicsVolume 2 Page 378



i would point out that obedience played a huge role in one receiving what one was seeking from YHWH.

Obedience also played a huge role in the fulfillment of YHWH's purpose for a man.

Salvation is no exception.

"and, once made perfect, HE became the source of eternal salvation for ALL who OBEY him"

--Hebrews 5:9 NIV

The Apostle Paul would explain it this way:

"Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?"

(Righteousness comes from OBEDIENCE !!!)

"But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you."


"Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness."

--Romans 6:16-18


Scripture COMMANDS that the baptismal RECIPIENT  "INVOKE", G1941, the Name of Jesus during the actually act of being Baptised. 

(Ref Acts 22:16)

Acts 22:16 proves when and how The Name of Jesus is applied:

1) When?...At baptism

2) How?...The Recipient should "Invoke"

A man MUST believe that calling on Jesus's Name during baptism saves him.

(Ref John 1:12, Acts 2:21, Acts 4:12)

Scripture NEVER says:

"Those who the Name of The Lord is CALLED OVER shall be saved"

Scripture ALWAYS says:

"They that CALL ON the Name of the Lord shall be saved". 

(Ref Acts 2:21, Rom 10:13)

"How then shall THEY (the convert) "invoke" Him..."

-Ref: Romans 10:14

NOTE: A.C.T.S. does NOT teach self baptism, ministers are commanded to baptize in Math 28 and Biblical examples can be found in abundance showing the role of ministers baptizing peoples, being in the water with them. 

A.C.T.S. encourages the minister to remain in tradition and invoke Jesus Name over the recipient, though we can find no Biblical example of a direct command to do so.

A.C.T.S. Church baptizes in Jesus Name, exactly like any Oneness Pentecostal Church, accept we follow after the example of Ananias in Acts 22:16 and purposefully instruct the convert to "invoke" Jesus Name in baptism. 

The Minister should preside over the ritual, and ensure proper understanding of the recipient and genuine repentance is met and belief. 



On Acts 22:16, G1941:

"…calling on the name of the Lord" (epikalesamenos to onoma autou). The word "calling" (epikalesamenos) is nominative case, singular in number, masculine in gender, participle, aorist 1 in tense, and middle voice (The Analytical Greek Lexicon, pg. 157). The participle form (the "ing") shows ongoing action and a relationship to baptism and the middle voice indicates that this is something the subject (Saul or Paul) is doing to benefit himself....."

-Ref: BibleTruths.net

On Acts 22:16, G1941:

"Now comes probably the most important phrase of this verse.....First off, the word "calling" (G1941) is a present participle. As with the preceding imperatives, it is also in the middle voice. It is also in the second person.....the ALT uses "you yourself." Again, Ananias is emphasizing it is Paul himself who must call on the Lord.....And finally, the ALT includes a cross reference to Acts 2:21. The verse reads in the ALT, “And it will be [that] every[one] who himself shall call on the name of [the] LORD will be saved!” And this verse in turn is being quoted from Joel 2:32. So earlier in the Book of Acts and in the Old Testament the idea of calling on the name of the Lord as being the means by which one is saved is seen." 

-Ref: Gary Zeolla, ALT Chairman, on Acts 22:16 ALT

GREEK LEXICON, on G1941 in Acts 22:16:

calling on

ἐπικαλεσάμενος (epikalesamenos)

Verb - Aorist Participle Middle - Nominative Masculine Singular

Strong's Greek 1941: (a) To call (name) by a supplementary (additional, alternative) name, (b) mid: To call upon, appeal to, address

KJV LEXICON, on G1941 in Acts 22:16:

επικαλεσαμενος  verb - aorist middle passive - nominative singular masculine 

epikaleomai  ep-ee-kal-eh'-om-ahee:  to entitle; by implication, to invoke (for aid, worship, testimony, decision, etc.) -- appeal (unto), call (on, upon), surname.

THAYER'S LEXICON, on G1941 in Acts 22:16:

5. Hebraistically (like יְהוָה בְּשֵׁם קָרָא to call upon by pronouncing the name of Jehovah, Genesis 4:26; Genesis 12:8; 2 Kings 5:11, etc.; cf. Gesenius, Thesaurus, p. 1231{b} (or his Hebrew Lexicon, under the word קָרָא); an expression finding its explanation in the fact that prayers addressed to God ordinarily began with an invocation of the divine name: Psalm 3:2; Psalm 6:2; Psalm 7:2, etc.) ἐπικαλοῦμαι τό ὄνομα τοῦ κυρίου, I call upon (on my behalf) the name of the Lord, i. e. to invoke, adore, worship, the Lord, i. e. Christ: Acts 2:21 (from Joel 2:32 ()); ; Romans 10:13; 1 Corinthians 1:2; τόν κύριον, Romans 10:12; 2 Timothy 2:22; (often in Greek writings ἐπικαλεῖσθαι τούς Θεούς, as Xenophon, Cyril 7, 1, 35; Plato, Tim., p. 27 c.; Polybius 15, 1, 13). 

"Acts 22.16 is a narrative of Paul's conversion. He is instructed to be baptized, and have his sins washed away by calling on the Lord's name."

-Dr. Daniel Wallace; Grammarian,

Professor of New Testament,

Dallas Theological Seminary


On Matthew 28:19:

"The mistake of so many writers on the New Testament lies in treating this saying as a liturgical formula (which it later became), and not as a description of what baptism accomplished."

-Boora, Yale Divinity School

Ref: Apostolic (Acts 2:38) and Post- Apostolic (Matthew 28:19) Baptism, Vol. 1

"Baptism was in fact performed in New Testament times, as far as our records go, in the name of Jesus, which is surprising if Jesus had laid down an explicit trinitarian formula before his ascension. An explanation for this may be found in the argument that these words, (Matt 28:19), which later came to be used as a liturgical formula, were not originally so intended and used."

-R.F. France, Oxford University, 

Ref: The Gospel of Matthew

"Traces of an older formula, preceding the one under discussion [Matthew 28:19], are found.... This older form of the baptismal formula must have been something like 'baptizing in the name of (the Lord) Jesus."

-L.J. Lietaert Peerbolte, VU University of Amsterdam, Yale Divinity School

Is Matt 28:19 legit the way we recieved it?

After examination of the facts, I happen to have the opinion that Matt 28:19 is legitimate the way we have it currently.

However, here is what the vast majority of Trinitarian Theologians say about Matt 28:19,

"Jesus, however, cannot have given his disciples this trinitarian order of baptism after His resurrection....the formal authenticity of Matthew 28:19 must be disputed...."

-Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, pg435

" Matthew 28:19 in particular only canonizes a later ecclesiastical situation, that it's universalism is contrary to the facts of early Christian history, and it's trinitarian formula is foreign to the mouth of Jesus"

-International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, vol4, pg2637

" modern critics claim this formula is falsely ascribed to Jesus and that it represents later (Catholic) Church tradition, for nowhere in the book of Acts is baptism performed in the name of the trinity...."

-New Revised Standard Version

" all but the most conservative Scholars agree that at least the later part of this command was inserted later.... thus it is argued that the verse originally read 'baptizing them in My name' and then was expanded to work in the Dogma..."

-Dr. Tom Harper, "For Christ's Sake", pg103

" the command to be baptized into the three fold name is a late doctrinal expansion.... Instead of the words baptizing them in the name of the father and of the son and of the Holy Ghost we should probably read simply 'into My name'."

-Dr. Peake, The Bible Commentary, pg 723

" it is often affirmed that the words 'in the name of the father and of the son and of the Holy Ghost' are NOT the ipsissima verba [exact words] of Jesus but a later liturgical addition."

-Tyndale New Testament Commentaries, vol1, pg275

Father=common noun

Son=common noun

Holy=adjective modifying Ghost

Ghost=common noun


The proper name JESUS 

(Acts 4:12, Acts 22:16)

is what is described by The Master in Matthew 28:19.

The Singular Name of Yeshua, (Jesus).

To teach that one does not have to "Invoke", G1941, Jesus's Name for one's self during the ritual conscience washing of Christian water baptism, is directly opposed to the teachings of scripture.

(Ref: Joel 2:32, Acts 2:21, Acts 22:16, Rom 10:13-15)

--John 1:12

"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:"



A.C.T.S. views Peter's sermon reference in

 Acts 2:38 on Jesus Name baptism much like we view another of Peter's sermons in

 Acts Chapter 10: 43,48.

"To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins."

-Acts 10:43

Here in this one verse Peter is preaching salvation to converts and remission of sins is the goal and it's the Name that accomplishes the goal.

But there is no mention of how to apply the Name in the verse.

If i only have this verse i say...remission of sins is from believing in the Name.

But in a SEPERATE verse, (48) the Bible explains how the Name is applied at baptism.

Now in Acts 2:38, as above, remission of sins is the goal but contrary to Peter's sermon above in Acts 10, this time Peter included in the verse (38) the explaination that the Name is applied at baptism, thereby providing the goal and application in one single verse. 

In one case when Peter is preaching, Chapter 10, the Bible says the application of the Name is the means by which the goal is achieved but it takes 2 seperate verses to explain the thought because Peter's sermon got interupted by The Holy Spirit.

In other cases the thought comes together differently.

Acts chapter 10

1) Goal (verse 43) 

remission of sins

2) Application (verse 48)  

Jesus Name baptism

3) Method 



2 verses to express thought,

No mention of method.


Acts Chapter 2 

1) Goal (verse 38)

Remission of sins

2) Application (verse 38)

Jesus Name baptism

3) Method (verse 21)

Convert invokes Jesus Name


2 verses to express thought,

Method identified.


Acts 22:16

1) Goal 

(wash away sins)

2) Application 

(Jesus Name baptism)

3) Method 

(convert invokes)


1 verse to express thought,

All 3 identified in one verse.




Remission (Acts 2:38, 10:43) and to 

"wash away" sins (Acts 22:16)


Jesus Name baptism (Acts 2:38, 10:48, 22:16)


Convert "invokes" (Acts 2:21, 22:16)



-John 1:12, 3:5,7,18= Baptism necessary

-Acts 10:43= "Prophets" bear witness

-Joel 2:32= HOW the Prophet bears "witness"

-Acts 2:21,38= Enacting Prophet's doctrine

-Acts 22:16= Instructs Convert to "Invoke"

-Rom 10:13-15= "They" hear and "invoke"

Conclusion: Convert invokes Jesus Name 



Charles Simeon's Horae Homileticae


"Baptism however, of itself, could avail nothing to the salvation of his soul. It was the blood of Jesus Christ alone that would cleanse him from his sins: in that fountain, therefore, he must “wash,” in order to be purged from his guilt: and this process was the work of faith only. And hence was that further direction given him to “call upon the name of the Lord.” The Lord Jesus Christ it was who had appeared to him, and had sent him to Ananias for instruction:..."

-On Acts 22:16, G1941

Adam Clarke Commentary

"Let this washing of thy body represent to thee the washing away of thy sins: and know that this washing away of sin can be received only by invoking the name of the Lord."

-On Acts 22:16, G1941

-Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges

(On Acts 22:16)

"calling on the name of the Lord] The oldest authorities give “calling on His name,” which refers back to “the Just One.” Probably the Textus Receptus is due to a desire to make the phrase accordant with Acts 2:21."

-Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(On Acts 22:16)

Calling on the name of the Lord.—The better MSS. give simply, “calling upon His name,” i.e., the name of the Just One whom St. Paul had seen. The reading in the Received text probably arose from a wish to adapt the phrase to the language of Acts 2:21.

-Barnes' Notes on the Bible

(On Acts 22:16)

"Calling on the name of the Lord - For pardon and sanctification, Romans 10:13, "Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." It was proper that this calling on the name of the Lord should be connected with the ordinance of baptism. That ordinance was emblematic of a purifying which the Lord only could produce. It is proper that the rite of baptism should be attended with extraordinary prayer; that he who is to be baptized should make it the occasion of special and very solemn religious exercises. The external rite will avail nothing without the pardoning mercy of God."

-Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

(On Acts 22:16)

"calling on the name of the Lord; the name of the Lord is not only to be used by the administrator of baptism in the performance of it; but it should be called upon by the person who submits to it, both before and at the administration of it, for the presence of Christ in it; and this invocation of the name of the Lord in baptism, signifies an exercise of faith in Christ at this time, a profession of him, and obedience to him."

"In Acts 22:16, Saul was commanded to arise and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, (how?) calling on the name of the Lord....(calling on the name of the Lord), in water baptism, washes away our sins....Of great importance, and concern for the believer in water baptism, is to call (invoke) on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ."

-D.R. Vestal, PhD, Chancellor, CBI,

The Truth of the Oneness Doctrine, pg69



Acts 22:16

King James Bible

"And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord."

Revised English Bible

"Do not delay. Be baptized at once and wash away your sins, calling on his Name"

Today's English Version

"And now, why wait any longer? Get up and be baptized and have your sins washed away by calling on His Name."

Aramaic Bible in Plain English

“And now why do you wait? Arise, be baptized, and be cleansed from your sins while you call upon his name.”

International Standard Version

"So now, what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized, and have your sins washed away as you call on his name."

New Living Translation

"What are you waiting for? Get up and be baptized. Have your sins washed away by calling on the name of the Lord."

Holman Christian Standard Bible

"And now, why delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins by calling on His name."

God's Word Translation

"What are you waiting for now? Get up! Be baptized, and have your sins washed away as you call on his name."

Douay-Rheims Bible

"And now why tarriest thou? Rise up, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, invoking his name."

Amplified Bible

"Now, why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins by calling on His name [for salvation]."

Orthodox Jewish Bible

"And now what do you intend to do? Get up and receive Moshiach's tevilah of teshuva and wash away your averos (sins) by calling upon SHMO.' [VAYIKRA 8:6; TEHILLIM 51:2; YECHEZKEL 36:25; YOEL 3:5(2:32) ZECHARYAH 6:12]"

Analytical-Literal Translation

"And now, why are you delaying? Having gotten up, get yourself baptized, and get yourself washed [or, purified][of] your sins, you [or, sins by you] yourself calling on the name of the Lord.' [cp. Acts 2:21]"


Is baptism necessary for salvation?


"Happy is our sacrament of water, in that, by washing away the sins of our early blindness, we are set free and admitted into eternal life! A treatise on this matter will not be superfluous; instructing not only such as are just becoming formed (in the faith), but them who, content with having simply believed, without full examination of the grounds of the traditions, carry (in mind), through ignorance, an untried though probable faith. The consequence is, that a viper of the Cainite heresy, lately conversant in this quarter, has carried away a great number with her most venomous doctrine, making it her first aim to destroy baptism. Which is quite in accordance with nature; for vipers and asps and basilisks themselves generally do affect arid and waterless places. But we, little fishes, after the example of our ΙΧΘΥΣ Jesus Christ, are born in water, nor have we safety in any other way than by permanently abiding in water; so that most monstrous creature, who had no right to teach even sound doctrine, knew full well how to kill the little fishes, by taking them away from the water!"

-Turtullian, origin of the treatise, chapter 1, 2nd Century

"Then we bring them to a place where there is water, and they are regenerated in the same manner in which we ourselves were regenerated. They then receive the washing with water in the name of God"

-Justin Martyr, 2nd century

(First Apology, Chapter 61).

"And when we come to refute them, we shall show in its fitting-place, that this class of men have been instigated by Satan to a denial of that baptism which is regeneration to God, and thus to a  renunciation of the whole [Christian] faith."

-Irenaeus, Against Heresies, Book One, Ch. 21, 2nd century

"water is sure; ye shall see the King in His glory and your soul shall meditate on the feat of the Lord."

"that baptism which leads to the remission of sins."

-Barnabas, The Epistle of Barnabas:XI, 

2nd century

 "was born and baptized, that by His passion He might purify the water." 

-Ignatius, 1st century

“'And dipped himself,' says [the Scripture], 'seven times in Jordan.' It was not for nothing that Naaman of old, when suffering from leprosy, was purified upon his being baptized, but it served as an indication to us. For as we are lepers in sin, we are made clean, by means of the sacred water and the invocation of the Lord, from our old transgressions; being spiritually regenerated as new-born babes, even as the Lord has declared: 'Except a man be born again through water and the Spirit, he shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.'" 

-Irenaeus, (Fragment, 34, A.D. 190).


 "The Church received from the Apostles the tradition of giving Baptism.... For the Apostles, to whom were committed the secrets of divine mysteries, knew that there is in everyone the innate stains of sins, which must be washed away through water and the Spirit." 

-Origen, 3rd Century, Commentary on 

Romans, 5:9


“When, however, the prescript is laid down that 'without baptism, salvation is attainable by none" (chiefly on the ground of that declaration of the Lord, who says, "Unless one be born of water, he hath not life.'" 

-Turtullian, On Baptism, 12:1, A.D. 203


“The Church was redeemed at the price of Christ's blood. Jew or Greek, it makes no difference; but if he has believed, he must circumcise himself from his sins [in baptism (Col. 2:11-12)] so that he can be saved . . . for no one ascends into the kingdom of heaven except through the sacrament of baptism . . . "Unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God" 

-Ambrose, 4th Century, on 

Abraham 2:11:79-84

"Jews and Gentiles, fully believing as they ought, are in like manner baptised", by, "invoking the Name of The Lord Jesus."

-Anonymous Apologist, writing against Cyprian, 3rd Century

" It (water baptism) works forgiveness of sins, delivers from death and the devil, and gives everlasting salvation to all who believe, as the word and promise of God declare..."

-Martin Luther, Small Catechism, 1529

" The anti-type whereof - the thing typified by the ark, even baptism, now saveth us - that is, through the water of baptism we are saved from the sin which overwhelms the world as a flood: "

-John Wesley, 18th century, Commentary on 1 Peter 3:21


"He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned."

-Mark 16:16

"The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:"

-1 Pet 3:21

"Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God."

-John 3:5


JESUS NAME Water Baptism ;

Encyclopedia References


11TH edition, Vol 3, Pg 365-366 

The baptismal formula was changed from the name of JESUS CHRIST to the words Father, Son, & Holy Ghost by the Catholic Church in the second century.


Vol 3, Pg 82

Everywhere in the oldest sources it states that baptism took place in the name of Jesus Christ.


Pg 53

The early church always baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus until development of Trinity doctrine in the 2nd century.


Vol 2, Pg 263

"The Baptismal formula was changed from the name of Jesus Christ to the words Father, Son and Holy Spirit by the Catholic Church in the second century."




Vol 2, Pg 377

Christian baptism was administered using the words “In the name of Jesus”.

Vol 2, Pg 378

The use of a Trinitarian formula of any sort was not suggested in early Church history.

Vol 2, Pg 389

Baptism was always in the name of Lord Jesus until the time of Justin Martyr when Triune formula was used. 



Vol 2, Pg 377 on ACTS 2:38

NAME was an ancient synonym for “person”. Payment was always made in the name of some person referring ownership. Therefore one being baptized in Jesus Name became his personal property. “Ye are Christ’s.” 




(1951), II, 384, 389

The formula used was ‘in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ’ or some synonymous phrase; there is no evidence for the use of the trine name… The earliest form, represented in the Acts, was simple immersion….in water, the use of the name of the Lord, and the laying on of hands. To these were addedm at various times and places which cannot be safely identified, (a) the trine name (Justin)….



(1962) I, 351

The evidence … suggests that baptism in early Christianity was administered, not in the threefold name, but ‘in the name of the Lord Jesus’.



(1965), I, 53

At first baptism was administered in the name of Jesus, but gradually in the name of the Triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.



(1898), I, 241

[One explanation is that] the original form of words was ‘into the name of Jesus Christ’. Baptism into the name of the Trinity was a later development.



Williston Walker, (1947), Pg 58

The Trinitarian baptismal formula … was displacing the older baptism in the name of Christ.



(1957), I, 435

The New Testament knows only baptism in the name of Jesus …, which still occurs even in the second and third centuries.



(1970), Pg 53

Persons were baptized at first ‘in the name of Jesus Christ’ … or ‘in the name of the Lord Jesus.’… Afterwards, with the development of the doctrine of the Trinity, they were baptized ‘in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost.



(1899), I, 473

It is natural to conclude that baptism was administered in the earliest times ‘in the name of Jesus Christ,’ or in that ‘of the Lord Jesus.’ This view is confirmed by the fact that the earliest forms of the baptismal confession appear to have been single – not triple, as was the later creed.



11TH edition, (1910), Vol 2, Pg 365

The Trinitarian formula and trine immersion were not uniformly used from the beginning… Bapti[sm] into the name of the Lord [was] the normal formula of the new Testament. In the 3rd century baptism in the name of Christ was still so wide spread that Pope Stephen, in opposition to Cyprian of Carthage, declared it to be valid.




Acts 22:16 Insert:

Biblical Application:


-Acts 2:21

"And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved."


-Acts 4:12

"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved"


-Acts 8:12

"But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women."


-Acts 10:43

"To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins."


-John 1:12

"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:"


-1st John 2:12

"I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name's sake."



"but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God"


-Acts 22:16

" And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord."



King James Concordance 



FROM G1941 we find thusly:

Verses containing G1941 concerning Christian Baptism

Rom 10:13,14  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

14 How then shall THEY call on him

(WHO ARE THE -THEY  ??? We assert it is referring to the convert.


Act 2:21  And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Act 22:16  And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.




Literally: to "entitle" onesself

Thayer Definition:

1) to put a name upon, to surname

1a) to permit one’s self to be surnamed

2) to be named after someone

3) to call something to one

3a) to cry out upon or against one

3b) to charge something to one as a crime or reproach

3c) to summon one on any charge, prosecute one for a crime

3d) to blame one for, accuse one of

4) to invoke

4a) to call upon for one’s self, in one’s behalf

4a1) any one as a helper

4a2) as my witness

4a3) as my judge

4a4) to appeal unto

5) to call upon by pronouncing the name of Jehovah

5a) an expression finding its explanation in the fact that prayers addressed to God ordinarily began with an invocation of the divine name

Part of Speech: verb

A Related Word by Thayer’s/Strong’s Number: middle voice from G1909 and G2564

Citing in TDNT: 3:496,*

Strongs Definition:

Middle voice from G1909 and G2564; to entitle; by implication to invoke (for aid, worship, testimony, decision, etc.): - appeal (unto), call (on, upon), surname.

King James Concordance:


Total KJV Occurrences: 38

call, 9

Act_2:21, Act_9:14, Rom_10:12-14 (3), 1Co_1:2, 2Co_1:23, 2Ti_2:22, 1Pe_1:17

on, 6

Act_9:21 (2), Act_22:16, Rom_10:14, 2Ti_2:22, 1Pe_1:17

surname, 6

Mat_10:3, Act_10:5, Act_10:32, Act_11:13, Act_12:12, Act_12:25

surnamed, 5

Luk_22:3, Act_1:23, Act_4:36, Act_10:18, Act_15:22

appealed, 4

Act_25:12, Act_25:21, Act_25:25, Act_26:32

called, 4

Act_9:21, Act_15:17, Heb_11:16, Jam_2:7

appeal, 2

Act_25:11, Act_28:19

calling, 2

Act_7:59, Act_22:16.



example of direct instruction to INVOKE (G1941) 


Act 22:16  And now why tarriest thou? Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling (G1941) on the name of the Lord.

The minister is sent by Jesus to command Paul, the RECIPIENT, to "invoke" (G1941) Jesus Name in water  BAPTISM.

Though, there are many examples in the Bible given of Christian Baptism in JESUS NAME and 

THE COMMAND GIVEN to perform it, we will explore the two most comparable to Acts 22:16 when it comes to a direct command to invoke. 

Mathew 28:19     and     Acts 2:38

Mathew 28:19:

Instructs the ministers to baptize “in the name of” but 

NEVER instructs to INVOKE (G1941).

Acts 2:38:

Instructs the recipients to be baptized “in the name of” but     NEVER instructs to INVOKE (G1941).



Dr. David K. Bernard of the UPCI, when examined on Acts 22:16, affirms that Acts 22:16 could depict the convert being instructed by scripture to invoke Jesus Name in water baptism in addition to the administrator.

"I think it can and should be both." [the administrator and the convert invoking Jesus Name in baptism.]

-Dr. DK Bernard on Acts 22:16 and baptism

Ref: "Religious Hard Talk" t.v., Jamaica

The preponderance of the evidence, both grammar and hermeneutics, supports our view of Acts 22:16.

When Trinitarians are arguing FOR our view of  Jesus Name baptism, Oneness folks should take notice and mark the potential for worldwide Apostolic Revival.


-The Prophets bear witness-

"To him give all the PROPHETS witness, that through HIS NAME whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins."

-Acts 10:43 (the chief Apostle)

+ (PLUS)

-Joel 2:32 (our Prophet giving witness)

"And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on THE NAME of the LORD shall be saved. "

------------- (EQUALS)

"And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on THE NAME of the Lord."  

-Acts 22:16 (a Jesus sent preacher)

=======(BOTTOM LINE)

After a careful study of Acts 22:16, One must place the Apostolic practice that this verse contains, back into the commands of Acts 2:38 and Matthew 28:19 where it belongs.

Acts 22:16 identifies how and when the saving Name of Jesus is applied to a new believers life.


At water baptism.


The recipient should,

"Invoke", (G1941), 

The Name of JESUS. 

The ONE INSTANCE of direct instruction to INVOKE (G1941) the Name of Jesus in Christian Baptism is given in: 

Acts 22:16  which commands the recipient to invoke The Name as opposed to the administrator.

The Bible NEVER says:

"Those who The NAME of The LORD is invoked over shall be saved." 

The Bible ALWAYS says:

"Those who invoke The NAME of The LORD shall be saved."

(--Ref: Acts 2:21, Romans 10:13,14)

"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."

--Acts 4:12

John 1:12 AMP

But to as many as did receive and welcome Him, He gave the right [the authority, the privilege] to become children of God, that is, to those who believe in (adhere to, trust in, and rely on) His name--

We find that BOTH the administrator AND the convert should invoke Jesus Name in the Christian rite of water baptism.

"Can One obey Acts 2:38 without obeying 

Acts 22:16?"

"My answer is No"

--Steven Ritchie; Apostolic Apologist

That is the pressing question of our time.

"I said in my haste, All men are liars.

What shall I render unto the LORD for all his benefits toward me?

I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD."

-Psalms 116:11-13

Obey Acts 2:38 & Acts 22:16

Mark August; M.Div

writing for:

Academy of Christian 

Theological Studies



"Bridging the Gap Between

Oneness and Trinitarianism"