Acts 4:12 (Misinterpreted Scriptures)

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

Misinterpretation: This Scripture is often quoted by Oneness Pentecostals as a proof for the importance of baptism in Jesus’ Name. Their reasoning is that no one will be saved except by the Name of Jesus, so that means that people must be baptized in the Name of Jesus to be saved.

Facts: No true Christian doubts that a person will only be saved by the Name of Jesus. However, Peter was not talking about baptism in Acts 4:12. He was answering the question that the high priest had just asked him, "By what power, or by what name, have ye done this?" (Acts 4:7 KJV). Peter answers that the power, or Name, that he has done these things through is the Name of Jesus, "[F]or there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."

Some members of the UPC would probably continue to debate this point with me. They might claim that the Bible says "we must be saved" by the Name of Jesus. My response would be that it is God’s grace working through our faith that saves, not baptism, and I agree that if a person does not believe in the Name of Jesus then they will not be saved. However, I do not believe that a person must be baptized in the Name of Jesus to be saved. To believe that is the equivalent of teaching that Jesus will send people to hell for obeying Him (cf. Mat. 28:19).

Is Jesus really going to send people to hell for taking him literally when he commanded his disciples to baptize in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost? People who baptize this way are not denying Jesus, they are actually doing their best to obey Him! You see, it is not what is said during baptism that saves you, it is God’s grace working through faith.

3 thoughts on “Acts 4:12 (Misinterpreted Scriptures)

  1. Yellow

    My pastor would have explained it like this: matthew 28:19 is like a formula (for Jesus name baptism) “.. baptizing them in the name of the Father(Jesus) and of the Son(Jesus) and of the Holy Ghost(Jesus)”

  2. jacob

    I am so thankful for sites like this so christians can unite…i was raised oneness too and still attend a upc after not going for 7 years and it seems like the old teachings are dieing with the old preachers but the upc has a lot more to go through if they want to effectively change one life at a time

  3. Bernie Yeater

    Is Acts 2:38 really talking about what the minister is saying? Could it be what the believer is saying?

    Could Acts 2:38 really be talking about a confession of faith in our Lord?

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