Summary: The word Christian is a two sided coin 1. United to Christ 2. Unction by Christ
Acts 11:26 ...... And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.
- WHEN A COIN has been so long in use that its impression is almost effaced, it is not easy to recapture its appearance as it came from the mint.
- Words are like coins — they are worn down by usage, and not only their appearance, but their meaning is altered — in some cases entirely changed, as in the word "prevent."
Prevent - 15 century
• Pre event
• "to act in anticipation of," "come before”
• Today Prevent to keep from occurring; hinder
"Christian" appears only three times
- Ac 11:26, 26:28, 1 Pe 4:16
- Wearing a cross a piece of jewelry except when it comes to the ACLU
“Christian” – Word usage has worn down
• Someone of European descent?
• A persecutor of Jews?
• Someone who votes for only the most conservative Republicans?
• Born in American or from Christian family
- The NT use of this term indicates that it was a term of derision, a term placed upon Christ's followers by their critics.
- First called Christian at Antioch
- Antioch combined Greek, Roman, and Jewish elements
- "Christian," used here for the first time, was more a mark of universality than any of the other names — such as Nazarenes, Galileans, brethren, disciples
- By "Christian' they were united.
- Recover the markings of the coin. On one face of it may be found the word "Union," for to be a Christian is to be —
1. United to Christ
1. "Christian" is "Christ's Man"
a. Association with Him — points to Person, not system;
Union with Him — is twofold:
(1) Union of Life:
(a) His life becomes ours — Christ in us
Galatians 2:20 (AV)
20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
(b) It begins — we are "born"
John 1:13 (AV)
13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
(c) It grows — we feed "on Him in our hearts by faith"
• He is the showbread in the sanctuary
2 Peter 3:18 (AV)
18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.
(2) Union of Love:
1 John 4:19 (AV)
19 We love him, because he first loved us.
• a Sufficient Sacrifice; In us
• a Living Power; Under us
• a Sure Foundation ; Around us
• a Wall of Fire; Over us
• a Blessed Master ; Beside us
• a Present Friend; Before us
• an Eternal Hope.
The other face of the coin is found the word, "Unction," for a Christian is also to be —
2. Unction by Christ
1. Since "Christ" means "Anointed One," so "Christians" means "anointed ones."
2. Anointing oil in O. T. at consecration of prophets, priests, and kings, symbolizing Holy Spirit;
3. As Jesus was thus anointed
Acts 10:38 (AV)
38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
- So also His followers
1 John 2:20 (AV)
20 But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.
1 John 2:27 (AV)
27 But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.
- Receiving Holy Spirit for —
• Cleansing heart from defilement
• Clearing mind of darkness
• To walk with God — in fellowship and intercession (cf. Mic. 3:8);
(c) For witness and service (cf. Acts 1:8);
• Nothing less than this is to be a Christian.
Flashlight Illustration – Giving power for purpose