Acts of the Apostles-The Gospel Message in Antioch

I am writing tonight from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Acts of the Apostles Chapter 16.

This chapter is based on Acts 11:19-26; 13:1-3.

  It was in Antioch that the disciples were first called Christians. The name was given them because Christ was the main theme of their preaching, their teaching, and their conversation. Continually they were recounting the incidents that had occurred during the days of His earthly ministry, when His disciples were blessed with His personal presence. Untiringly they dwelt upon His teachings and His miracles of healing. With quivering lips and tearful eyes they spoke of His agony in the garden, His betrayal, trial, and execution, the forbearance and humility with which He had endured the contumely and torture imposed upon Him by His enemies, and the Godlike pity with which He had prayed for those who persecuted Him. His resurrection and ascension, and His work in heaven as the Mediator for fallen man, were topics on which they rejoiced to dwell. Well might the heathen call them Christians, since they preached Christ and addressed their prayers to God through Him.  {AA 157.1} 

To me, the boldest claim anyone can make is that they are a Christian. When you call yourself an elder you are just saying that you are older. When you call yourself a preacher you are just saying that you speak in public. A theologian just claims to study the Bible, but a Christian claims to be like Christ! Wow! Christ wants to give us His name, but He does not want us to take His name in vain. In sign language the word “Christian” is made up of two signs. The “Christ” sign and the “person” sign. When you sign to a deaf person that you are a Christian what they literally see is that you are claiming to be a “Christ person” or a person like Christ. There is no higher title, label or honor that the Church can bestow than the name that Christ gave you when He calls you a Christian.

you may find more studies and devotionals at In Light of the Cross.

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