January 27, 2002


Text: I Corinthians 1:10-25

Title: "The Name"

Introduction: Tracing the trail of our origins through genealogy and the critical function of "names." The Peter Gunsolus story and the phenomenon of being "born into a family"/"being born into a name."

I. This text is serious about apostolic admonition "through" the name of the Lord Jesus Christ; about finding common ground in speaking/confessing that same name; about remembering the dawn of Christian beginnings for every child of the covenant when we were "baptized into the name."

II. Although not in the sense of a direct quotation as in the case of his Epistle to the Philippians (2:6-11), Paul here would seem to be very much dependent upon the hymnic tradition and its confession of Jesus as Lord...the name which is above every name. It is a name given to the "son in whom I was and am well pleased" by God at his resurrection/exaltation. It is "into" this name that Christians are baptized and who then make regular and public confession regarding that name.

III. Is there a reason for being baptized "into the name" rather than "in the name"? In this same epistle (12:12ff) Paul speaks of the body of Christ in such a way that those who are baptized become the parts of the body beneath the one head, the Lord. "Into" is the place to begin to think about (cf. 1:10) how Christians become "one" with their Lord (cf. also the picture of the Spirit like a dove descending "into" Jesus in the gospel baptismal traditions as analogy)...into his dying and rising> tracing origins forward for a new kind of genealogy.

Conclusion: Mr. Park's story about the "expensive" name given his son. Once "into" the name via baptism our lives are literally "wrapped up" in that name and we wear the name that - to use the vision of the Book of Revelation - is written by God into the Lamb's book of life...a very expensive/costly entering of the baptismal record forever.