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The Name "Christian"

by Robert J. Young
©, 2001, Robert J. Young
[permission is given to reprint with credit noted]

"If any may speak, let him speak as the oracles of God...." (1 Pet. 4:11). Every Christian who loves the truth of God's Word should be concerned with speaking the truth in love (Eph. 4:15). Our vocabulary and terminology ought to reflect the truth of Scripture. The songs we sing must be biblically accurate just as should the sermons we hear.

Consider the name "Christian." Fewer and fewer seem content to simply wear and use this biblical name. Some will refer to the Lord's church as "one of the denominations," seemingly oblivious to the plea for unity of believers and the truth that all believers have been added by God to the body of Christ. Periodically, someone will speak of another person as "Church of Christ" in the same way that our Baptist friends say "I am Baptist." Most have heard references to Church of Christ buildings, Church of Christ preachers, and Church of Christ members. At a time when many of our religious neighbors are attempting to move toward biblical words, let us not depart!

Through the ages, men of many religious persuasions have urged the use of the simple name "Christian."

These simple pleas reflect Peter and Luke as they wrote the Word of God. "If any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed" (1 Pet. 4:16). "...And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch" (Acts 11:26). "Almost though persuadest me to be a Christian...." (Acts 26:28).


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Last updated November 28, 2001.