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Author Topic: What's in a name?  (Read 3894 times)

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Little Joe

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What's in a name?
« on: January 19, 2008, 08:38:03 AM »

Maybe I'm being silly, and perhaps a bit of a snob, but I've been thinking about the designation "christian" for quite a while now.  We read in Acts:

Acts 11:26  (KJV)
 26And 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.


Now, it seems to me that that name was given to the disciples by pagans so, should we as Christ's followers call ourselves Christians? or perhaps disciples of Christ, or does it matter.  Perhaps I just got up too early and have nothing better to think about.  What do you all think?
« Last Edit: January 19, 2008, 08:43:16 AM by Little Joe »
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musicman

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2008, 10:41:20 AM »

I think you're right.  I refuse to be called a Christian by this world.
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STORM

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2008, 10:59:12 AM »

Hey, I don't see anywhere in Acts 11:26 where it says that pagans coined the term "christians."
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rjsurfs

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2008, 11:21:27 AM »

No doubt that the "majority" have misused the name... I don't use the name myself either, but don't see anything wrong with it per se' as it means "follower of Christ" in the Greek.

G5546
Χριστιανός
Christianos
khris-tee-an-os'
From G5547; a Christian, that is, follower of Christ: - Christian.

Also used:
1Pe 4:16 yet if as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, yet let him be glorifying God in this name,...



Bobby

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Little Joe

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2008, 11:54:07 AM »

Hey, I don't see anywhere in Acts 11:26 where it says that pagans coined the term "christians."

I get this from inference, "..they were first called Christians at Antioch."  They meaning people other than the disciples (assuming the pagan culture), otherwise  it would have read, "they called themselves Christians first at Antioch".

ciao,

Joe
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Little Joe

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2008, 12:08:34 PM »

No doubt that the "majority" have misused the name... I don't use the name myself either, but don't see anything wrong with it per se' as it means "follower of Christ" in the Greek.

G5546
Χριστιανός
Christianos
khris-tee-an-os'
From G5547; a Christian, that is, follower of Christ: - Christian.

Also used:
1Pe 4:16 yet if as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, yet let him be glorifying God in this name,...



Bobby



From G5547; a Christian, that is, follower of Christ: - Christian.

Also used:
1Pe 4:16 yet if as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, yet let him be glorifying God in this name,...

Bobby



You are right, the word Christian in that verse translates the same in every version of scripture I looked up including Young's literal translation.  So, apparently the disciples even used it. I guess I'm just trying to distance myself from Babylon, since that name is almost meaningless anymore used more to represent a culture than a faith.

Little Joe
« Last Edit: January 19, 2008, 12:10:47 PM by Little Joe »
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Truth101

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2008, 01:32:02 PM »



I agree, The name has somewhat been perverted since all mormons JW's and Catholics all use the name.

I find myself struggling to explain to someone that I'm a Christian but not in the sense of the popular image of a Christian.

I usaully just say I am a follower of Christ and I believe the true gospel. Sometimes that doesnt help my explaination  ???.

Anyway I have a hard time using the name now in any case.

God Bless, Dave
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moshe

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2008, 03:00:41 PM »


I just usually say that i am not a 'church person' (since i am not agree with the most of what they say) but that i believe on the first manuscripts of the bible, and that i think that there is alot of interesting stuff on there that is on the most contrary to the normal ''christian culture''.

I like it to don't be called by an specific name because of my believes,  it may can gives opportunity to people to jugde you wrong faster, before even hear what you have to say if the opportunity comes.

Anyway once somebody called you nickname, the best think to do is dont get bothered, just like elementary school , the most you get bother about it, the more time you have your new name.ha.



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chuckt

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2008, 08:48:27 AM »

Interesting for sure plus the fact  we disscussed this the other week  at a gathering, the same thing was brought up
about it being ""pagans"" whom did the LABELing.


I have come to despise labels, try talking to some one about freewill and they automatically accuse of of being a
calvinist  :'( , once you are labeled they will read or hear everythng you say from prejudice!.....sad indeed.

we are followers of the WAY. ;D


chuckt


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Little Joe

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2008, 10:42:35 AM »

Interesting for sure plus the fact  we disscussed this the other week  at a gathering, the same thing was brought up
about it being ""pagans"" whom did the LABELing.


I have come to despise labels, try talking to some one about freewill and they automatically accuse of of being a
calvinist  :'( , once you are labeled they will read or hear everythng you say from prejudice!.....sad indeed.

we are followers of the WAY. ;D
chuckt




Yeah, I considered myself a "Calvinist" before joining BT.  I do not want to be associated with that name anymore, though.  John Calvin was an evil man.  He had people burned at the stake for "heresy', and had children stoned for disobeying their parents in the model "Christian" city he established in Geneva.  I think anyone who did a little research on church history would flee organized religion in a heart beat.  In you are right, early believers followed "the Way"

Acts 24:14 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)

Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society
[NIV at IBS] [International Bible Society] [NIV at Zondervan] [Zondervan]

14However, I admit that I worship the God of our fathers as a follower of the Way, which they call a sect. I believe everything that agrees with the Law and that is written in the Prophets,








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hillsbororiver

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2008, 11:22:01 AM »

Hi Everyone,

I think it is a tough call to use any labels at all since some group somewhere has probably already hijacked it, I remember hearing or reading about "The Way" some time back, here are some of the beliefs of what is now called "The Way International."


 The Bible, the Word of God
The Way believes the Bible is the written Word and revealed will of God.


 Nature of Jesus Christ
The Way teaches that Jesus Christ had no existence before his birth except in the mind (foreknowledge) of God. Although Jesus was a perfect sinless man, he was only a man, 'the second Adam', not God. This is similar to the ancient heresy of Arianism in that it denies the Trinity and rejects the Deity of Jesus Christ, as the modern day Jehovahs Witnesses do, however it is unique in its denial of the Pre-existence of Jesus Christ before the Incarnation, which the Jehovahs Witnesses affirm. Wierwille asserted that God and Jesus Christ are separate, independently-thinking entities who are literally father and son. But he also holds that Jesus Christ did not exist until God created sperm which fertilized an ovum in Mary's womb; he did not have any consciousness until she gave birth to him.


 Holy Spirit vs. holy spirit
Regarding the Holy Spirit, Wierwille taught that there is a distinction between "The Holy Spirit" and "holy spirit". The former refers directly to God the Father (hence his argument for capitalization of those sections), while the latter refers to the gift from God (a.k.a. "the gift of holy spirit"). In his book Receiving the Holy Spirit Today he discussed his view of the lack of care given when English translators chose which phrases to capitalize and which to not.


 Manifestations of Holy Spirit (including Speaking in Tongues)
The Way teaches that there are nine "manifestations of holy spirit" (not "gifts" as other denominations describe them) and that every Christian has the inherent ability to operate all nine. They derive the list of "manifestations" from 1 Corinthians 12:7-10 King James Version. The Way maintains that speaking in tongues energizes and enables the "effectual operation" of the other 8 manifestations.

According to Wierwille, speaking in tongues is " ... the believer's external manifestation in the senses world of the internal reality and presence of the power of the holy spirit". According to The Way, speaking in tongues can only be interpreted in a meeting where other believers are present and can never be interpreted in a believer's private prayer life. Numerous benefits that TWI claims derive from speaking in tongues are taught.

TWI holds some beliefs about "receiving the holy spirit" that are similar in many ways to the Classical Pentecostal belief in the "Baptism in the Holy Spirit", in that they teach that the "initial evidence" of receiving "the gift of the holy spirit" is Speaking in Tongues (often abbreviated as "SIT"). Speaking in Tongues is seen as one of the primary ways in which members of the Way express and grow in their spirituality.


 Four Crucified with Christ
The Way teaches, Jesus was raised on Saturday and there were four people crucified with him, not two. Wierwille points out different Greek words were used for those crucified with Jesus in the different gospel accounts, as well as discrepancies in timing, statements, and actions of the characters in the narrative.


 The Cross
The Way also teaches and insists that the "Cross" upon which Jesus was crucified was not the traditional "T-Shaped" Cross, but rather a "stake" or "tree".


 Death & Resurrection
Only those born-again (i.e., believers who lived after Pentecost), will be gathered together with Jesus Christ upon his return in the sky. Everyone who died before the day of Pentecost (including the men and women of the Old Testament), everyone who has lived after Pentecost and are not born-again, and those who live in the tribulation period will be raised in the "Resurrection of the Just" or the "Resurrection of the Unjust". Until that time the dead are not conscious or in any way "alive" until the resurrections or "gathering together".

Regarding Luke 23:43 ...And Jesus said unto him, "Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise." The Way teaches it is more accurately translated, "Verily I say unto thee today, thou shalt be with me in paradise" (note the placement of the comma). They point out, the resurrections of the just and the unjust, as well as the gathering of the Church to Christ, are still future events.


 Baptism
The Way International insists that water baptism was never intended as a continuing practice in the Church after Pentecost. They believe that water baptism belongs only to the "Gospel Age" from John the Baptist's ministry until the day of Pentecost. The belief is that water baptism was meant as a symbol only, a sign of the coming promise of the gift of the holy spirit, which was fulfilled at Pentecost. Therefore, the only "baptism" that is for us today is "the Baptism of the holy spirit", and since the reality of the promise of the spirit has already been fulfilled, the symbol of water baptism is no longer needed.


 Eternal Life Cannot Be Lost
The Way also teaches, once a person is saved, he cannot lose the spirit through any sinful acts since it is eternal life. A principle called "renewing your mind" (from Rom 12:2) is taught as a way for a person to discipline his thoughts and actions in alignment with the Bible. To illustrate this The Way refers to the "adoption of children" spoken of in Ephesians 1:5 which they teach is a reference to a Roman law stating that biological children could have their inheritance revoked, but adopted children could not (see : Adoption in Ephesians and Galatians, Ref. #30).

Their fathers could never (and most would never) take their inheritance away (because of the sacrifice, cost, and love invested in making them legally their own). They maintain this verse says, once a person is born-again they can never lose eternal life. They assert rewards can be lost, but not eternal life.


 Tithing
The Way teaches tithing (giving 10% of one's income) as a minimum requirement of giving. Additional giving is called "abundant sharing". An additional term, "plurality giving", was coined to refer to calculating the amount of money you need to live on, and giving all the rest. There was no "official" requirement to tithe or abundantly share, but the concept was strongly promoted, and those who didn't were not considered to be "doing the Word". Wierwille included his booklet on abundant sharing, "Christians Should Be Prosperous", in his foundational class materials. Martindale frequently promoted increasing one's proportion of giving in Sunday Teachings.


 Five Gift Ministries
The Way teaches there are five "gift ministries", or abilities of service, Jesus Christ gave to the Church. They derive their list of "ministries" (apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers) from Ephesians 4:11, although the exact term "gift ministries" is not found in the bible. The Way holds these five "abilities of service" are inherent capabilities in every believer, and are gifts from God to the church.


 The Seven Administrations
The Way teaches there are seven administrations, or distinct periods of time governed by certain promises and commands God has given Man at key points in history. Therefore, there are parts of the Bible which are written to us in this "administration" and other parts which are not, but are "for our learning".


 Five Sonship Rights
The Way teaches, every Christian has five basic rights as sons and daughters of God. These fundamental rights are righteousness, redemption, justification, sanctification, and the ministry of reconciliation.


 Paul's Thorn in the Flesh
The Way maintains the "thorn in the flesh" referred to in 2 Corinthians 12:7:

(7) And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.

... refers to an individual sent by Satan to disrupt his ministry. They assert the thorn in the flesh was not an illness.


 Cry of Triumph
The Way teaches this phrase was left in the verse Mark 15:34 because the King James translators were unsure of its meaning:

(34) And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?" Which is, being interpreted, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
They maintain this phrase is better translated, "My God, my God, for this reason I was preserved!". Wierwille based this teaching largely on his familiarity with George Lamsa's translation from the Peshitta Aramaic text, but the Aramaic Interlinear and Concordance published by The Way's American Christian Press (after Wierwille's death) gives a different translation: "My God, my God, why hast thou spared me?" This disagreement is especially peculiar, since Wierwille stated that Aramaic does not have a word "lama", but only "lemana", and that "lemana" would only be used in an exclamation, in a "cry of triumph", and would not be used in a question.


 Without Form and Void
Wierwille taught that in Genesis 1:2 ...

(2) And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
... the Hebrew word for "was" [hayah] is better translated "became". Joseph Rotherham's Emphasized Bible also holds this view. As well, Strong's concordance notes, "hayah" means "to become" or "to come to pass". Therefore, the earth was not made without form and empty of life, but it became that way (by a cataclysmic event ... the fall of Lucifer and 1/3 of the angels).

Second Way President L. Craig Martindale, in his class "The Way of Abundance and Power", (WayAP) taught, the "becoming without form and void" was related to the "face of the deep" being frozen. He taught the fall of 1/3 of the angels with Lucifer was physically to "the face of the deep" and their absence of light froze it. This was so catastrophic, all light in universe was extinguished and all life wiped out until God commanded "Let there be light".

Martindale's view was, the universe was surrounded by a salt-water solution. He based this on:

Job 38:8 Or [who] shut up the sea with doors, when it brake forth, [as if] it had issued out of the womb?

and

Job 38:29 Out of whose womb came the ice? and the hoary frost of heaven, who hath gendered it?


 The Original Sin of Mankind
Regarding Genesis 3:6ff...

Wierwille, in his class "Christian Family and Sex", taught the literal original sin of mankind was masturbation. He reasoned, the "tree of life" from Genesis could be compared to verses where people were figuratively referred to as trees. He further compared the "fruit" of the tree of knowledge with the human genitalia, from whence human fruit, i.e, children, proceeds and came to the conclusion that Adam and Eve's sin was a sexual sin, masturbation. He supported his view with the statement "they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons" in Genesis 3:7.

Martindale, in the Foundational Class on The Way of Abundance and Power, changed this Way doctrine, concluding virtually every word in Genesis 3:6 had a sexual connotation. Since (according to him) homosexuality was the lowest degradation of sexuality, the original sin of mankind was Eve having lesbian sex with the Devil, who had "come into concretion" in the form of a beautiful woman.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Way_International#TWI_Beliefs_and_Doctrines

Amazing stuff isn't it?

Peace,

Joe



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Little Joe

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #11 on: January 21, 2008, 12:04:58 PM »

Indeed amazing stuff Joe.,

I've known at least two people who were in that cult.  Like most cults, it was all about money and control. I still keep in contact with one of these people from my college days when she was big into it.  I guess you really can't win with labels  :-\
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musicman

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2008, 12:46:18 PM »

Wow, so Eve's sin was having lesbian sex with Satan.  I guess Adam got involved in a three way.
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Phil3:10

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2008, 02:50:18 PM »

I do so want to be in the Body of CHRIST and a follower of HIM. Christian is to broad a term and includes the Babylonian System. If we could only understand,  it is Just HIM and nothing else.
Phil3:10
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gmik

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2008, 07:45:00 PM »

I really have a hard time "naming" or "labeling" myself, but Christian is harder and harder to say.  I let people think it sometimes, but in my own mind I am not a christian.  I liked 'the way' till I just read Joes post.  Dang!!  Just a believer in Jesus and His Word.  I dunno. 


Musicman, I used to believe Eve had regular sex w/ Satan and they had Cain.  Adam and Eve had Abel.  I got over that one pretty quick. That teaching had cult all over it.
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Little Joe

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #15 on: January 21, 2008, 09:09:18 PM »

I do so want to be in the Body of CHRIST and a follower of HIM. Christian is to broad a term and includes the Babylonian System. If we could only understand,  it is Just HIM and nothing else.
Phil3:10

Right on Philthreeten! I think I am going to settle for "Follower of Jesus".  ;)  That says it all, I think.
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Arthyron

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #16 on: January 22, 2008, 01:54:44 AM »

I tend to refer to myself as a Follower of Christ rather than a Christian, simply because I don't want to be identified with all that passes for "Christianity."  I want it to be known that I do not serve some institution, but Christ and His Word.
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Akira329

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Re: What's in a name?
« Reply #17 on: January 22, 2008, 07:19:54 PM »

If you have to label yourself as something why not a child of the living God?
A servant of his son Jesus?
I come to find myself using these terms. I even have to admit that God has become
a father to me when I talk to other people. The term god seems generic but has its place in describing him and his son.
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