This is probably going to end up being an ongoing debate between me, myself and I.
For a long time after I left my former church, I believed that baptism in Jesus' name was right. Then I thought it was better. Then a Oneness Pentecostal argued with me about baptism in Jesus' name, thinking I was Trinity. And I realized how wrong some of their arguments were. Reading back through some of my blogs tonight, I realized just how much my thinking had shifted even since then-in a good way.
Now, I'm considering getting rebaptized, and think I may keep notes of some of what I'm studying and some of what I've learned here.
OK, for starters, I've considered rebaptism for a number of reasons since leaving, some good and some not so good. One of the first reasons I considered was making a clean break from the Oneness movement. That was not a very good reason for me. For starters, baptism isn't meant to be used as a way to take a stand against a group of believers. Also, a "clean break" is really not possible when you still live amongst the group you're breaking from. They wouldn't even know I'd gotten rebaptized--any "break" would only be in my own mind.
Separating myself from them eventually came in the form of wearing pants and short sleeves even when they might see me. Curiously, most of them have been more accepting of me since I changed the way I dressed. Even just tonight, riding my bike, one drove by, smiled, waved and called my name. No disgust--he actually looked happy for me! (Which makes me wonder how many of them truly believe what they're living... but that's another blog for another time.)
Again, I considered it simply because there's so much division caused as a result of the debate (of baptism in the name of Jesus). Yet getting rebaptized won't stop the debate, and I've already shown whose side I'm on by where I attend church, how I live my life, and so forth. Yet it might be done for unity's sake. That one I need to think about more.
Rebaptism can definitely be a public testimony and witness. But of what? If my testimony is "I'm not one of THEM," indicating another group of believers, that's not a good enough reason for me, personally. However, if my testimony is an answer of a good conscience toward God, a way to say, "yes, I truly believe," then it might be right. Motive is the key in that case.
I also have to consider historically and Biblically if rebaptism is acceptable or right. I don't find anything in the Bible that says people were rebaptized, except in the case of the disciples of John in Acts 19. My personal feeling is that these disciples, not "having heard whether there be any Holy Ghost" probably were not familiar with Jesus' death, burial and resurrection. They had been baptized to...