When you diagram a sentence, something not taught in schools today, it can reveal things about the sentence which go unnoticed by simply reading it. A lot can be revealed about this next section of Matthew 28 by diagramming it.
We start with our simply diagram Subject | Verb What is the subject of the sentence and what is the verb. In the case of Mathew 28, the answer is You | disciple Now let’s break down this next section of the verse,
“immersing them in the Name” or originally “βαπτιζοντες αυτους εις το ονομα“Matthew 28
We will have to grab some pieces from the entire verse, but for now, our focus is just this section.
The questions which will be asked while diagramming this section:
- “How do I/You disciple?”
- “Who do I/You βαπτιζοντες?”
- “How do I/You βαπτιζοντες αυτους?”
- “What do I/You βαπτιζοντες αυτους εις?”
Question #1: “How do I/You disciple?” The answer is by “βαπτιζοντες .” So what does that word mean? I’m sure you have a preconceived idea but let’s pretend you don’t and let’s find out what it means.
When we look into this word, we find out it is in the present tense. It is a present state of action/being. The next thing we find out is that it is a plural word. hmmm interesting, why is it plural? Making note to come back to that.
What does this word mean? The root word is: βαπτίζω: dip in, wash, bathe, to affect thoroughly. This same word is used in the Old Testament such as here:
My heart reeled, horror overwhelmed me; the night for which I longed He turned into fear for me.Isaiah 21
We have our definition, on to the next question.
Question #2: “Who do I βαπτιζοντες?” The answer is ‘αυτους’ or ‘them.” Who are them? The nations. Last post we learned the meaning of ‘nations’ carries with it the idea of a group of a like natured people. An ethnic group.
Ah, so the plurality of the word immersing makes sense now. It isn’t about immersing one person, but a group of people.
Question #3: “How do I/You βαπτιζοντες αυτους?” The answer is ‘εις’
into, unto, to, towards, for, amongOutline of Biblical Usage
εἰςεἰς, a preposition governing the accusative, and denoting entrance into, or direction and limit: into, to, toward, for, among. It is used:Thayer’s Greek Lexicon
I. of place, after verbs of going, coming, sailing, flying, falling, living, leading, carrying, throwing, sending, etc.;
1. of a place entered, or of entrance into a place, into; and
a. it stands before nouns designating an open place, a hollow thing, or one in which an object can be hidden: as εἰς (τήν) πόλιν, Matthew 26:18; Matthew 28:11; Mark 1:45, and often; εἰς τόν οἶκον, Matthew 9:7; συναγωγήν, Acts 17:10; πλοῖον
The ubiquitous preposition εις (eis) describes a motion into any place or thing, and can often be translated with “in”, “into” or “at”. … In a temporal sense, our word reflects arriving at a certain point in time, and can hence be translated with “up to” or “until”. As such, it may also be used to describe the final result of a process (bind them into bundles, MATTHEW 13:30) or the upper limit of a clause or condition (guilty as hell, MATTHEW 5:22).https://www.abarim-publications.com/DictionaryG/e/e-i-sfin.html
Interesting how assuming a common word such as in or into can lead us to miss out on so much more meaning to a simple scripture. What I see here is much more than an introduction to Christ as Christians are encouraged to do. It isn’t about getting people to meet Jesus, find Jesus, or accept Jesus. Question #4 is still out there, so I am getting just a bit ahead of myself, but yeah, this is sinking in deep. Is it for you?
Question #4: “What do I/You βαπτιζοντες αυτους εις?” The answer is “the ονομα.”
This word is singular not plural. There is one here, not several. This same word is used in Exodus 3:
15And Elohim said further to Mosheh, “Thus you are to say to the children of Yisra’ĕl, ‘יהוה Elohim of your fathers, the Elohim of Aḇraham, the Elohim of Yitsḥaq, and the Elohim of Ya‛aqoḇ, has sent me to you. This is My Name forever, and this is My remembrance to all generations.’Exodus 3 (The Scriptures)
This is My Name – the word here is Name. And it means the same thing then that it means today.
What did we find out then?
We are told to immerse the nations into the name. A more richer versions might be something like this:
I/You disciple/teach by dipping in, washing, bathing, affecting thoroughly, overwhelming all the groups of peoples into, unto, to, towards, entrance into, as the final result of bind them into the name.
I don’t know about you but I’m realizing this doesn’t involve a pastor – since it is something I am to do. It isn’t something done to one person, because it is plural and about nations/groups of people. It has nothing to do with getting someone saved, or meeting Jesus. And water isn’t involved because it’s into a name.
I think we should just let this one marinate for a bit before moving on.
NOTE: I used many sources for this one, and many statements are a combination of those. Sometimes, you should do some of your own research. If you google these words, you will find a lot of information to look through. Happy Digging into the Word.