Monday, 8 August 2016


True disciples were called Christians, first at Antioch, according to the Bible. But not only at Antioch...
Peter, writing to a much wider audience, which would have included Jewish believers, didn't tell them to shrug off the term Christian - rather, he commended suffering as a Christian. He told them to treat it an honour.
So widespread did the term become, that even a secular ruler Agrippa said he felt almost persuaded by Paul's testimony to become a Christian himself.
And Paul, rather than deny the term, said he wished everybody was like himself.
So there is every evidence early disciples accepted and embraced the term.
The etymology of the word includes nothing undesirable.
Christian = follower of Christ
Christ = Messiah
Messianic = Christian
Certainly, anyone who names the Name of Christ has an obligation to depart from iniquity...
But if some other individual falls short, that's not a reason for us to despise a Biblical term which by all indications the early Church accepted.
To despise the term and persecute it would be to act differently to the Apostles, differently to early Gentile-believers, differently to early Jewish-believers, differently to the secular community of that time - and differently to the witness of the Bible.

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