Read: Why Christians Need A Stage Name by Brian Jones.
Brian Jones makes a proposal that made the rounds at the Boar’s Head Tavern a couple of years ago: Let’s stop using the label Christian to refer to ourselves. Brian’s nomination is that we say we are disciples and he gives some excellent reasons. One of them is at the heart of what it means to have Jesus shaped spirituality: We are always learning from Jesus.
As I’ve reworked my concept of God through the Jesus shaped grid, it is inevitable that I think about how I want to present myself to the world. The term “Christian” has content, but it doesn’t have strong Biblical warrant. It’s, frankly, strange how some people will defend the word “Christian” as if it is one of the Ten Commandments, when it’s actually a term of derision from the start.
Brian says that saying we are disciples reminds people that we have neither arrived nor are we postponing being Jesus followers. We are in the process now, and to believe is to follow. These are both part of the same journey of faith, not two separate experiences.
That’s not to confuse faith and works, by the way. It’s the way to solve that long standing argument. Believers in Jesus are believers of Jesus’ teachings and example. The gospel isn’t one dimensional, but puts us in the mode of believers, receivers and followers all at the same time. Already and not yet is as true about us as it is about anything else in Christian experience.
I am a student of Jesus. I trust him to be the one from whom I learn all about the meaning and purpose of my life and ultimate reality. I am in class to learn about him and from him. I believe in him and I seek to believe what he believed. He is my trust, but he is also my way.
An outstanding post from a Jesus shaped guide and fellow disciple.