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Stephen Allen Wrote:Right. I'm wondering whether the term "Christian" referred to another religious group that the secular community in Antioch began to confuse with the Nazarenes since Acts 11:26 does not say that the disciples were actually Christians, just that they were called Christians in Antioch. (The same could be said of the two other appearances of the word "Christian" -- Acts 26:28 and 1 Peter 4:16.)


Shlama Stephen. This is real simple. The disciples were called "Christians" in Antioch by whom? Surely it was Greek speaking people. The Peshitta simply transliterates the speech of these people and what they said about the Nazarenes or the Way (Acts 24:1-14). There is not a single biblical reference of the disciples calling each other "Christians" but they addressed Gentile believers with this title.

In fact, the Catholic Church father Epiphanius, in "Against Heresies" seems to indicate that the Christians and the Nazarenes were two separate groups. If so, when did the "Christians" originate?


"Christians" originated at the same time. They were Gentiles like Cornelius who had been "God fearers" under the old synagogue system (Acts 10). However, Acts 9 and 15 makes it clear that both Jewish and Gentile groups (sometimes they were mixed) were under control of the Jerusalem See, headed by Ya'akov Ha Tzadik (James).

Such an understanding would explain why in these three verses the term "Kristiana" (of Greek derivation) is used in the Peshitta and not Nazarene, wouldn't it?

Any thoughts?


Consider also that while Y'shua used an Aramaic word to call his disciples "branches" that one of the Hebrew words for branch that he would have known was NETZER, from which we gbet both Nazareth and Nazarene. Since Nazareth as a place did not exist in the time of any OT prophets (especially Isaiah, the only prophet to use NETZER in a Messianic context), the lnkage of the word as "Branch" is significant. Hope this helps!

Shlama w'burkate
Andrew Gabriel Roth

Messages In This Thread
Kristiana - by Stephen Allen - 05-23-2005, 10:48 PM
[No subject] - by The Lector - 05-24-2005, 05:13 PM
[No subject] - by Stephen Allen - 05-24-2005, 05:33 PM
[No subject] - by Andrew Gabriel Roth - 05-24-2005, 11:49 PM

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