Christians – Faithful Followers of Jesus

Christians - Faithful Followers of Jesus

Word of God
Acts 11:25-27 (KJV) 25 Then departed Barnabas to Tarsus, for to seek Saul:
26 And 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.
27 And in these days came prophets from Jerusalem unto Antioch.
Devotional Insight
By Frances Taylor

Sometimes people wonder why we are called “Christians” since Jesus was a Jew. There are a couple of reasons. One is that originally they were in fact a sect of Judaism until they were thrown out of the temple. Now, Messiah is the Hebrew name for the “anointed one.” In Greek, this is “Christ.” So it follows that they would be called Christians by those who spoke Greek and were Gentiles, not Jews.

We are also “anointed ones” because of our Baptism. We often call the day of our Baptism the day of our Christening. We are anointed with the faith of Christ – The Anointed One. Christ is sometimes thought of as Jesus’ last name.

Actually, it is his title. In Jesus’ time, the last name usually referred to something descriptive, one’s occupation, the place where a person came from, or his father’s name. The people of his time would have called him, Jesus bar Joseph, and Jesus the Nazorean. Remember, Joseph was called “the carpenter.” Names were considered to be very important. In many cultures, a person may have four or five names. The relatives may have some say in the naming. A person may have names that include blessing, merciful, gift or beautiful, qualities that they either believe the child has, or will develop, as well as the name he or she will be called and then the family name. Different cultures even put the family name first. Our names are so important that the Jews will not call God by the name he gave to Moses. This is why the Jewish leaders were so upset when Jesus called himself “I Am.” The people of Antioch were convinced by Paul and Barnabas that Jesus was in fact the Messiah, the Christ, and so the followers were now named “Christians.”

Let us pray

Almighty God, you promised that you would send a Messiah to save your people. You sent us Jesus, the Christ, now we bear his name as Christians. Please also give us the graces and strength that we need to be worthy of the name. Amen.

Source: iDailybread Co., Limited

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