Pentecostal Historical Society
Volume 20, Number 3
ONE NAME, BUT MANY TITLES
By Frank J. Ewart
In the footnotes of his famous Bible, Dr. C. I. Scofield, has written
thus, under Matthew 28:19: “The word is in the singular, the name, not names. Father, Son and Hoy Spirit is the final name of the one true God.” Orthodox theology has accepted the Scofield statement in total. Let us examine it in the light of other scriptures.
It is remarkable that Scofield has no comment on the apostle Peter’s interpretation of the great commission as given in Acts 2:38. As expert as he is at reconciling seeming discrepancies of the Bible, here is one glaring discrepancy that he completely ignores. In this, like all other Trinitarian preachers, Scofield blindly follows the lead of the Roman Catholic Synod of 325 Q.D. who confused a command with its fulfillment. Why evade a palpable truth that bats you in the eye as soon as you open the New Testament: that if the commandment of Jesus was not literally fulfilled on the Day of Pentecost, then it never was fulfilled by the Apostles. In the four records of administering the rite of Christian baptism in the Book of Acts, we have the name Jesus mentioned in every one of them, but the words, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, are conspicuous by their absence. If you take Peter’s interpretation of Jesus’ words given to Him and the other disciples, the absolute harmony of the Scriptures is preserved. If you take the orthodox view as championed by Dr. Scofield, you are faced with the most colossal contradiction of all history.
The Apostle Peter justified his position in baptizing converts to Christianity in the name of Jesus Christ by his declaration in Acts 4:12. The American Revision renders this text: “And in none other is there salvation: for neither is there any other name under heaven, that is given among men, wherein we must be saved.” In the famous translation of Dr. Francis Weymouth, we have this rendering: “And in no other is the great salvation to be found: for, in fact, there is no second name under heaven, that has been given among men through which we are to be saved.” Dr. Weymouth has no comment in his footnotes on this rendering, showing that in his judgment the Greek text is perfectly translated.
The consensus of the most eminent ministers in Protestant Christianity have confirmed Mr. William Phillips Hall’s remarkable Biblical discovery that the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, is Lord Jesus Christ. Matthew 28:19 is discussed by the author with the conclusion that it cannot be deleted from the Scriptures, and the only way to sustain the harmony of the Scriptures is to conclude that Acts 2:38 was the literal fulfillment of Matthew 28:19. He states in this book that the apostles invariably baptized their converts in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and again, the startling statement is made: “In view of the Biblical facts disclosed in this book, it appears that there never would have been any doubt, whatever, among Christians about the absolute Deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, during the Christian era, had the original, apostolic interpretation of Mathew 28:19 in the Greek text been clearly understood and taught by men, from the apostolic age until the present time.”
The scholars of Christendom have confirmed Mr. Hall’s findings in this book, and yet in doing so they declare as plain as words can say that God has one name—not three. When spoken by the reverent Jews, this original name was, and still is, called Adonai, that word being substituted for The Name” in its original form. Ha Shem (Hebrew) or Onoma (Greek) is translated The Name” in English. And in Hebrew this is what all reverent Jews say as a substitute for the original name, called ineffable or unutterable. Mr. Hall says, This expression, “The Name’ absolutely is never used in the Hebrew Scriptures, to designate or represent any other than the Lord God in the totality of His essential and eternal Being and attributes.” Surely this elucidates to the discerning Bible student the reason why the name, when it was adopted by Jesus, and later given to Him by His disciples, met with such bitter hostility There are two passages that forever settle the fact that, in the apostles’ doctrine, Jesus was the visible manifestation of the invisible God, both in name and nature.
In Acts 5:41 we read, “They, therefore departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.” In the third Epistle of John, seventh verse, reads: “For the sake of the name they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles.” Both of these quotations are from the American Standard Revised Version, and in each the term, The Name” is used to designate the Lord Jesus Christ.
The one name of the one true God given to Moses out of the midst of the burning bush was preserved in Him whom the burning bush typified. As a Son He had his Father’s Name (Hebrews 1:5). The burning bush was one of the theophanies, Jesus was God’s final theophany, Hebrews 1:1-2 says, “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us in His Son.” (Greek—”out of a Son.”). The unity of the Scriptures is sustained by the patent fact that no only in Matthew 28:19 but nowhere else in the entire Bible, can the word “Names’ be found as relating to God.
The prophet Zechariah, looking down the v vista of time through the confusion that would prevail about the name and nature of the Deity, prophesied, “In that day shall there be on Lord, and his name one” (Zechariah 14:9). That one name is Jesus. It contains in essential significance all that the original name of God contained. Dr. Scofield admits that Jesus in the Greek is the equivalent of Yahoshua in the Hebrew. This is the name of which the whole family in heaven and earth is name: the only name given under heaven whereby we must be saved; the name which is above every name that is named; the name of the Lord of the universe; the name in which every knee shall bow, in the three realms of heaven, on earth and hell, to the glory of God, the Father; the name of which God said, “This is my name forever and this is my memorial unto all generations” (Exodus 3:15). The one name of the one true God.
Let us not confuse the one name of Jesus with His many titles. Lord and Christ should be coupled with the one name, Jesus I, in Christian baptism; for Peter declared, “that God hath made this same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36). In Hebrew this would read, “both Jehovah and Jehovah’s Anointed.” In the famous passage, Isaiah 9:6, which may be called, the five-pointed star of David, we have five wonderful titles: “wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.” Add to these the thousands of titles that have been mentioned as belonging to Jesus, and then try to realize the fact that all these titles must be subordinated to the one name, which is the name of the Father, Son, and holy Spirit. This name exalts Jesus above angels and archangels, and principalities and powers in the heavenly kingdoms; makes Him King of kings and Lord of lords, yea makes Him, “The Lord of the universe.” At the coronation of the king, the redeemed creation will hail Jesus as “God over all, blessed forever. Amen.”
(Published in “The Voice of Calvary” paper, Raymond Hoekstra, pastor. Indianapolis, IN, January 1943)