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Who Is A Christian?

Kyle_the_Heretic
Posts: 748
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7/31/2015 3:21:02 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
There is a bit of disagreement on what is required to be a Christian. One commonly accepted requirement is that one must believe that Jesus Christ is God. Well, I believe that Jesus Christ is God, and yet nearly all Christian fundamentalists and many Catholics insist that I am not a Christian. Another requirement is that one must believe that Christ is the only name under Heaven by which one can be saved. I believe that , but they still say I'm not a Christian. Yet another requirement is to obey and follow Christ. I do that, and yet they still insist that I am not a Christian. Why?

Well, here's the trick. You have to believe Christ is God the way they say He is God, and you have to believe He is your Savior the way they say He is your Savior, and you have to obey and follow Him the way they say it must be done. They often condemn other churches for claiming to have the only truth, and then hypocritically do the same themselves, denying the term "Christian" to all who oppose them.

Well, here's the deal, Christian fundamentalists don't get to decide what a Christian is and is not. God never gave them permission to do so. As such, we must get our definition from the source of the word "Christian": The Bible.

The word "Christian" can be found in the (KJV) New Testament twice: Acts 26:28 and 1 Peter 4:16. And its plural can be found just once: Acts 11: 26. In none of those three verses is "Christian" defined to the least degree, save to say that it was the name given to the disciples of Christ.

"Disciple" is found in the KJV 29 times, and its plural 243 times, and in the context of all of them, a disciple can be defined as nothing more than a "follower". Not just a follower of Christ, but a follower of anyone. In Mathew 9:14 and 11:2 we read about the disciples of John the Baptist.

So, if we're going to use "disciple" as a definition of "Christian", then to be Christian, one must simply follow Christ. No where does it say that one must believe he is God or the Son of God, or a resurrected being. They need only "follow" him to be Christian.

One can quote the following passage, "Then said Jesus to those Jews who believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed." (John 8:31), and insist that to be a disciple, one must also believe on Jesus, but that isn't true. In fact, Jesus doesn't recognize those who believe on him in this passage as disciples until they follow him (continue in His word). Well then, let's support that last passage with, "But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you." (John 10:26). Clearly this means that those who follow him, like sheep, must also believe on him. Right? Not really, Jesus makes it clear in the context of that passage that sheep know the master's voice. But one does not necessarily need to know the master's voice to follow. In John 10:38 Jesus says, "But if I do [the works of my Father], though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him." Jesus makes it clear that one need not believe Him to believe "the works". We can follow Him without believing Him, and thereby eventually come to believe.

I believe I have given sufficient biblical proof that a follower of Christ can be called Christian without necessarily believing in Christ.

Now, to be clear, I'm not saying that one can be saved without believing in Christ. Belief is a must for salvation. But one may call himself/herself a Christian without believing in Christ.

Finally, the early disciples of Christ did not call themselves "Christian", that was a name derogatorily given to them by their persecutors. They simply adopted the name, because, despite it's persecuting nature, it was nevertheless a flattering term for "follower of Christ." The name by which the early disciples of Christ called themselves was "Saints." Which now seems to be an exclusive club in the Catholic church.
Thinking is extremely taxing on the gullible, and it takes hours to clear the smoke.
clickclock
Posts: 18
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7/31/2015 3:28:47 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 7/31/2015 3:21:02 AM, Kyle_the_Heretic wrote:
There is a bit of disagreement on what is required to be a Christian. One commonly accepted requirement is that one must believe that Jesus Christ is God. Well, I believe that Jesus Christ is God, and yet nearly all Christian fundamentalists and many Catholics insist that I am not a Christian. Another requirement is that one must believe that Christ is the only name under Heaven by which one can be saved. I believe that , but they still say I'm not a Christian. Yet another requirement is to obey and follow Christ. I do that, and yet they still insist that I am not a Christian. Why?

Well, here's the trick. You have to believe Christ is God the way they say He is God, and you have to believe He is your Savior the way they say He is your Savior, and you have to obey and follow Him the way they say it must be done. They often condemn other churches for claiming to have the only truth, and then hypocritically do the same themselves, denying the term "Christian" to all who oppose them.

Well, here's the deal, Christian fundamentalists don't get to decide what a Christian is and is not. God never gave them permission to do so. As such, we must get our definition from the source of the word "Christian": The Bible.

The word "Christian" can be found in the (KJV) New Testament twice: Acts 26:28 and 1 Peter 4:16. And its plural can be found just once: Acts 11: 26. In none of those three verses is "Christian" defined to the least degree, save to say that it was the name given to the disciples of Christ.

"Disciple" is found in the KJV 29 times, and its plural 243 times, and in the context of all of them, a disciple can be defined as nothing more than a "follower". Not just a follower of Christ, but a follower of anyone. In Mathew 9:14 and 11:2 we read about the disciples of John the Baptist.

So, if we're going to use "disciple" as a definition of "Christian", then to be Christian, one must simply follow Christ. No where does it say that one must believe he is God or the Son of God, or a resurrected being. They need only "follow" him to be Christian.

One can quote the following passage, "Then said Jesus to those Jews who believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed." (John 8:31), and insist that to be a disciple, one must also believe on Jesus, but that isn't true. In fact, Jesus doesn't recognize those who believe on him in this passage as disciples until they follow him (continue in His word). Well then, let's support that last passage with, "But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you." (John 10:26). Clearly this means that those who follow him, like sheep, must also believe on him. Right? Not really, Jesus makes it clear in the context of that passage that sheep know the master's voice. But one does not necessarily need to know the master's voice to follow. In John 10:38 Jesus says, "But if I do [the works of my Father], though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him." Jesus makes it clear that one need not believe Him to believe "the works". We can follow Him without believing Him, and thereby eventually come to believe.

I believe I have given sufficient biblical proof that a follower of Christ can be called Christian without necessarily believing in Christ.

Now, to be clear, I'm not saying that one can be saved without believing in Christ. Belief is a must for salvation. But one may call himself/herself a Christian without believing in Christ.

Finally, the early disciples of Christ did not call themselves "Christian", that was a name derogatorily given to them by their persecutors. They simply adopted the name, because, despite it's persecuting nature, it was nevertheless a flattering term for "follower of Christ." The name by which the early disciples of Christ called themselves was "Saints." Which now seems to be an exclusive club in the Catholic church. : ;'

Only a saint understands what a saint is. Christians have never understood what a saint is.
Kyle_the_Heretic
Posts: 748
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7/31/2015 3:32:09 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 7/31/2015 3:28:47 AM, clickclock wrote:

Only a saint understands what a saint is. Christians have never understood what a saint is.

Well, then I guess it's a good thing no one here believes I'm a Christian, eh?
Thinking is extremely taxing on the gullible, and it takes hours to clear the smoke.
clickclock
Posts: 18
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7/31/2015 3:33:25 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 7/31/2015 3:32:09 AM, Kyle_the_Heretic wrote:
At 7/31/2015 3:28:47 AM, clickclock wrote:

Only a saint understands what a saint is. Christians have never understood what a saint is.

Well, then I guess it's a good thing no one here believes I'm a Christian, eh? : :

LOL !!!!!! No one in here believes I'm God's last saint, either.
UniversalTheologian
Posts: 1,078
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7/31/2015 4:00:29 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
"...teach no other doctrine, nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith. Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith, from which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk, desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say nor the things which they affirm."

Being accused of heresy doesn't mean you are right, but you aren't doing it right unless they accuse you of heresy.
"There are trivial truths and the great truths. The opposite of a trivial truth is plainly false. The opposite of a great truth is also true." ~ Niels Bohr

"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident." ~ Arthur Schopenhauer