Who Are the Saved?
Last week we concluded from the study of God's Word that one that hears the Word of God (Romans 10:17) concerning Jesus Christ and believes Him to be the risen Christ (Romans 10:9-10); repents of their sins and is baptized for the remission of those sins (Acts 2:38), the Lord adds him to the church and is SAVED!
Who are the saved? Are they Christians? Are they members of Christ's church, the church of Christ? Please open your Bibles and hearts to the Truth of God's Word as we study this important subject today.
The Bible teaches that one that is saved is a Christian. God spoke through Isaiah, about 700 B.C., about a NEW NAME (Isaiah 62:1-2). I ask the reader to please turn in your Bible and read each and every passage to see "whether those things were so" (Acts 17:11). By the year 40 A.D. as recorded in Acts 11:19-20 we see Jesus Christ being taught to Jew and Gentile. We learn in Acts 11:21 that "a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord". Who were those people that "turned unto the Lord"? In Acts 11:26 we learn from the context that these people were CHRISTIANS!
From Acts 15:14-17, about 45 A.D., James declared the prophesy of Isaiah fulfilled. The name Christian is the only logical link between Isaiah 62:1-2 and Acts 15:14-17. Thus, the NEW NAME by which God's people are to be called is CHRISTIAN.
Who were these Christians? From Acts 11:26 we see that those Christians were "disciples". A disciple is "one who follows both the teacher and the teaching" (Bullinger, p226.). A Christian is defined as "an adherent of Jesus", (Bullinger, p152). An adherent is simply a follower, thus a follower of Christ. A couple of synonyms of “adherent” are "attendant, disciple", (Roget's Thesaurus, p9). From this we simply learn that a Christian is a disciple, or follower of Christ and His teaching.
The apostles were commanded in Matthew 28:19-20, "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." (NASB). For one to be a disciple or a Christian, one MUST be baptized. Please read Matthew 28:19-20 again. For one to be a true follower of Christ and His teaching he MUST be baptized (Mark 16:15-16).
We learned earlier that one that has obeyed Christ in baptism is saved (Mark 16:15-16; Acts 2:38,41,47). Now we see in our study today that one that is saved is a Christian, a disciple of Jesus Christ. Is he also a member of Christ's church, the church of Christ? More next week.