3 Reasons Why It Doesn’t Make Sense To Re-Baptize In Jesus’ Name

3 Reasons Why It Doesn’t Make Sense To Re-Baptize In Jesus’ Name August 14, 2023

A number of people who’ve previously been baptized “in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” are having second thoughts about their baptism. They’re now discovering that it was an error, and concluding that they were baptized incorrectly. 

Therefore, they believe they need to do it again, but this time in the name of Jesus Christ, otherwise their baptism is invalid, and they are not saved.

How did such a silly and off-the-wall concept come about? It seems to have originated around 1914 within Oneness Pentecostalism, also known as the “Jesus Only” movement. 

What is Oneness Pentecostalism?

What is Oneness Pentecostalism? You can find out more here, but I won’t waste time examining their entire belief system. I’ll only focus on the one point that’s relevant to our topic. 

Now, please correct me if I’m wrong, as I don’t keep up with the many different denominations and Christian beliefs out there; this is actually fairly new to me. But, from what I gather, Oneness Pentecostals don’t believe in water baptism in the name of the “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,” which is traditionally performed in many congregations. Instead, they practice water baptism only in the name of Jesus.

According to them, water baptism should be performed by reciting Jesus’s name over the person being dipped in water. A baptism received the other way is wrong, and according to false teachers like Gino Jennings, a so-called pastor made popular by weak-minded Christians hiding behind his loud mouth and seemingly righteous but damnable doctrines, you weren’t really baptized.

That’s right. You haven’t been baptized (though technically you have if you’ve gone under the water), you’re not saved, and unless you re-baptize the “right way,” that is, in the name of Jesus Christ only, apparently you’re going to hell. It’s one of the most ignorant things I’ve ever heard from a pulpit.

Oneness people don’t believe in the Trinity, which consists of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—-one God manifested in three persons or essences. Instead, they believe that the “fullness of God” – Father, Son, and Spirit, is manifest in one man, Jesus Christ, who alone serves as the Godhead.

Therefore, according to them, it’s not three persons, it’s one complete person, or God, made from the three original beings. It’s similar to how the original Power Rangers combined their animals to form one big warrior robot; the three essences, or beings of the Godhead merged to form one complete God—Jesus Christ.

How that makes sense when reading the Bible, I couldn’t tell you. How can Jesus also be the Father whom he prayed to and whom the people heard speaking in a thunderous voice? How can he be in physical form, yet with us as a Spirit at the same time? 

Support For the “Trinity”

As I no longer follow man’s teachings, labels, and traditions, I am no longer a Trinitarian. But I trust what the Bible reveals, which clearly depicts the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each as a separate entity. Because they all share the same unique qualities as the one true God, they can all be called “God.” 

As you, your words, and your spirit are a unified whole, making up the complete you, the God of Abraham is one—the Father directing, the Son expressing, and the Spirit showing God’s characteristics.

Somehow, the incomprehensible God manifests in three beings at the same time. It doesn’t matter whether you roll them up into one or break them apart, they still equal three, and it’s still the same God. 

Therefore, undergoing a second water baptism in Jesus’ name after being baptized in Father, Son, and Spirit is absurd and it shows our ignorance. It‘s unnecessary for us to be ignorant, but unfortunately, we’re lazy. We don’t want to read, study, and meditate on the Word for ourselves, but instead rely on everyone else to tell us what to think.

But, I’ve discovered that as I move away from mainstream Christian teachings and allow the Holy Spirit to teach me instead of man, things begin to make more sense. 

And below are three reasons why re-baptism in Jesus’ name makes absolutely no sense.

1. The Scripture does not refer to a literal name.

In Acts 2:38, the Greek word ονοματι (onoma) translated as “name” can refer to a literal name. It can also refer to power, authority, fame, glory, or reputation.

Now, riddle me this. 

How can one baptize, that is, how can they dip or immerse into someone’s literal name? They can’t. It makes absolutely no sense. Rather than being re-baptized, perhaps it’s time we start re-thinking the traditions we’ve been taught so we can move closer to God’s heart, will, and purpose.

Now, I hate to be the one to break it to you, but there is no “power in the name of Jesus.” There is power in the person of Christ. As you may recall, the Seven Sons of Sceva attempted to cast out a spirit from a man by using the name Jesus, or rather in Greek, “Iesou.” Can you recall what happened to them? They got a beatdown by the spirit that was in the man. 

They had the name, but they didn’t have the power. 

Additionally, the Lord’s name wasn’t unique to him. Others had the same name. So, which “Jesus” are you invoking? And contrary to what Jennings says, adding “Christ” doesn’t make any difference as Christ is a title that was claimed by others as well. 

Furthermore, baptism can mean immerse, sink, drown, or figuratively, it can mean to be overwhelmed. We’re not doing something “in the name of” as in “by the authority of” something or someone (ex. In the name of love). Baptism involves actually dipping an object into a substance. What is that substance?

I propose to you that Acts 2:38 and baptism in Jesus’ name has absolutely nothing to do with water.

Neither do the Scriptures state that this baptism is to be done with water. That is an assumption made on our part. Rather, to be baptized, or immersed, in the name of Jesus is to be immersed into the power, authority, or glory of Christ. 

Also, remember that onoma can also refer to one’s fame or reputation. These relate to an individual’s identity. So, taking it all together, we can say that we are immersed into the person of Christ, which is consistent with Scripture.

That’s how we are spiritually buried and risen with Jesus (Rom. 6:4-5). It’s how our lives are hidden in him (Col. 3:3). Water can’t do that folks. If the Bible says we were buried then we were buried. There’s nothing symbolic about this. It’s something that’s done in the spirit. 

This is what happens when we repent. We turn and submit ourselves under the authority of Christ, and as a result we are immersed into him, in which we are surrounded by his glory, power, and majesty. 

Also note that the Greek word ληψεσθε (lambanō) commonly translated as “receive” in Acts 2:38, can also mean “apprehend,” “understand,” or “comprehend.” It is also written in the middle voice.

So, in reality what Peter told the men on the Day of Pentecost was probably more on the lines of: “Turn to God by submitting to the one he has made both Lord and Christ. (the repentance) When you do this, you will be spiritually immersed in the person and power of Jesus, (the baptism) in which you will recognize for yourselves, the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (the Holy Spirit)

It’s not three separate actions. It’s one action—repent. That one action will result in two responses—immersion in the person of Christ and encountering the Holy Spirit as a result of being in Christ. 

It’s similar to saying “Open your eyes and see.” The first action is voluntary. The resulting action is involuntary. If you do the first, the second will automatically follow. Repent and be baptized. 

When you do, you will no longer be confused or have to question a move of the Spirit as the men were doing in Acts 2, accusing the other men of being drunk. You will be able to experience and therefore, comprehend the power for yourselves. That was the whole point of Peter’s sermon.

John’s water baptism was simply used as a symbol, a parallel, or an introduction to spiritual baptism. Our baptism into the Lord Jesus is what matters and it happens automatically through a supernatural move of God when we repent. Saying a name over someone as they go under water means absolutely nothing. 

2. Even if Scripture was referring to a literal name, Jesus is not the Savior’s name. 

The second reason why it makes no sense to re-baptize in Jesus’ name only is because even if Scripture did call for use of the Lord’s literal name when performing a water baptism, Jesus is not the Savior’s name. Jesus is a made up name that’s derived from the Greek name Iesou which comes from the Latin Iesus which comes from the name Jeshua, a form of the Hebrew name Yeshua, Yoshua, or Yehoshua, depending on who you ask. 

So, again, the name means nothing but it all has to do with Christ, the person. Therefore, those who condemn others being adamant about being baptized in the name of Jesus Christ only, condemn themselves since they too are being baptized in the incorrect name according to their own teaching. 

3. Water Baptism is not a requirement for salvation.

A third reason why re-baptizing in Jesus’ name makes no sense is that water baptism has never been a requirement for salvation. So, what exactly are you trying to accomplish? Anyone who insists that it’s a requirement is a liar. It’s either that or they haven’t read the Bible. If they’ve read it, they haven’t read it well. In any case, it may be time to find a new source for your doctrine. 

Both the Old and New Testaments mention water immersion as a method of ritual purity. There is no connection between it and eternal salvation and you won’t find one Scripture that says otherwise.

I’ve written a post on patheos.org titled, “What Was the Purpose of John’s Baptism?” and on my personal blog, titled “Is Baptism Required for Salvation?” that provide a more detailed look at baptism and the true purpose of it according to Scripture.


So, to conclude,  to re-baptize in Jesus’ name makes no sense because number one, the Scriptures don’t refer to a literal name, number two, Jesus is not the Savior’s name but rather a transliteration of a name that has already passed through multiple languages, and number three, water baptism is not a requirement for salvation.  

Throughout the ages, the people of God have practiced water baptism as a cleansing ritual, including John the Baptist and Jesus. Today, we should be baptized only for the same reason – ritual purity and new beginnings.

For those who were baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, a baptism “do-over” reciting Jesus’ name only is not necessary. Faith in the God of Abraham, through trust and submission to the authority of Christ, is all that’s needed for eternal salvation.

If you believe otherwise, then I have a question for you. 

Where is your faith? 

Is it in a pool of water? Or is it in God Almighty?

Let’s stop trusting in man’s foolishness and start actually trusting in the Lord as we claim we do.

**Unless otherwise noted, the thoughts expressed in this post are my own, and are intended to guide, not replace one’s own conviction and study of Scripture.

About Miranda Turner
Miranda Turner is an author, blogger, and podcaster. In her writings, she discusses God, the Bible, and anything else related to glorifying the Lord. Find out more at https://truthtrumpstradition.wordpress.com/. You can read more about the author here.

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