What is a Christian?
To be a Christian is to bear the name of Jesus: the one, the only true Christ.
Our English word Christ, comes from the Latin “Christus”, from the Greek “Khristos” meaning anointed. The Hebrew word was Messiah, our modern word today is Christ which some take to mean any anointed one, or any religious icon. No, Christ is not a pagan word, but even if it was, could not God redeem a pagan word for His purpose as He did our pagan hearts?
Christ, in our modern culture and the present day world is defined as this:
Christ (n.): the title, also treated as a name, given to Jesus of Nazareth.
–New Oxford American Dictionary
I know the New Oxford isn’t the good old Noah Webster, but this is how our world defines the word Christ: rightly so. To the world, a Christian is a follower of Christ. There is never a doubt which Christ, for there is and will only ever be one true Anointed One, one Messiah, and that is Jesus.
Should we call ourselves Christians?
And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.
–Acts 11:26 (KJV)
Coming upon the heels of tremendous gospel acceptance among the gentile Greeks in Antioch, a church was establish and Barnabas sent to survey and instruct the believers further in how to be disciples and faithful witnesses. Barnabas oversaw the church at Antioch for a year, teaching as they saw much increase. And the disciples of Jesus were first called Christians in Antioch. A thriving church in a gentile city, that’s where they were first called Christians.
Some scholars say it was a negative name, the people mocked the disciples by calling them little-Christs. But rather than become indignant or ignominious, they embraced the persecution. It didn’t bother them to be called Christ-like because that was their goal. Even if the world thinks it is, it’s never a negative to be likened unto our Lord Jesus. A Christian is unafraid to bear the name of Christ and defend Him as the One and Only.
Are you a Christian? Do you identify with Christ? Are you willing to bear His name?
Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God:
–Luke 12:8 (KJV)
If we do not confess Him, He will not confess us. What better confession and identification than wearing the name of the very Christ we worship. I’m not condemning those who do not call themselves “Christians” for personal reasons and issues they have with that title and designation, but I am saying our lives should be a testament of Jesus Christ and what He has done. Let the world mock us by calling us Christians. If we live to please men and do it, we fail. If we live to please God and do it, we succeed. Our earthly reputations don’t amount to much in light of eternity save the glory of God only.
Should we call ourselves Christians? Should we identify with our Savior: the one and only Christ that will ever be? I am a Christian, no matter what the world may say of me.
As always, thanks for reading.
—the anonymous novelist