What is a Christian?
Some believe it’s a wedge to use against believers!
For example, I won’t hand church money over to a family for their electric bill. This is because both parents have cell phones on their sides, both have an automobile, and their home is equipped with Dish Network and Hughesnet.
When I refuse to give them anything the response is something like, “and y’all call yourselves Christians!”
Hmm, let’s see what the Handbook for Christians – Volume 1 says; you know it as the Bible.
Nowhere does it say “handeth over thy money to anyone that asketh thee!”
Let’s start with where the term “Christian” comes from?
Both the King James and New King James have only 3 references for the term and both start with Acts 11:26 – So it was that for a whole year they assembled with the church and taught a great many people. And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch. NKJV
I understand that being a Christian is associated with several things just by this verse.
First, Christ, which is the root of Christian and derives from the Greek word Christianos (khris-tee-an-os’) which means a Christian, i.e. follower of Christ.
Now I said that the previous versions have 3 references for Christ. However the New Living Translation contains 34 but most are implied by the use of words like “believing” or “brother”.
Regardless, neither translation says “hand over money to others when they ask!”
Second, I understand from the verse that a Christian is associated with a church fellowship; an assembly of believers.
And third, a Christian is a disciple of Christ; a disciplined believer, which is someone that is being taught in the instruction of a relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
I cannot find any place in scripture where Jesus handed out money or a commandment to do so.
The Book of Acts gives us this account; Acts 4:32-35 – All the believers were united in heart and mind. And they felt that what they owned was not their own, so they shared everything they had. The apostles testified powerfully to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and God’s great blessing was upon them all. There were no needy people among them, because those who owned land or houses would sell them and bring the money to the apostles to give to those in need. NLT
Notice there were no needy people among them. They weren’t just handing their possessions or finances over to just anyone. They were taking care of fellow believers in their church fellowship.
I don’t have a problem with helping those in my church and have occasionally done so.
Also the Apostle rebuked those in the church that had come together for a feast by saying, “But if anyone is hungry, let him eat at home,” 1 Cor 11:34 NKJV
It was not the responsibility of the church to feed everyone.
The Handbook for Christians – Volume 1 also says this nifty little verse – “Those unwilling to work will not get to eat.” Yet we hear that some of you are living idle lives, refusing to work and meddling in other people’s business. We command such people and urge them in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and work to earn their own living. 2 Thess 3:10-13 NLT
So you really don’t have the right to throw my Christianity in my face just because I won’t hand over to you the finances of others that have been given to the church.
One other thought; several years ago someone stole $60 from me, right out of my wallet.
I won’t go into details but this was witnessed by another person.
But the day came when the same young man’s car broke down and he and a friend wandered up to my house in a downpour and wanted a ride to town.
I told him I would take him – for $60!
He was quite surprised.
I said to him, “You took $60 from me that time, didn’t you?”
He admitted that he did.
“So that is my price for taking you to town!”
They both walked off down my driveway, the whole time he was shouting back at me, “And you call yourself a Christian!”
Yes, I do. If I were not I would have hit him upside the head with a 2×4 years ago.
It is my Christianity that keeps me praying for others and not doing them harm; not that I am a violent person, mind you, but in my flesh I can understand why people go postal or have road rage.
Christ keeps us from following our sinful, fleshly impulses and frees us to follow Him.
I call myself a Christian!
What is a Christian?