Labels

3 08 2010

“A Christian in many American circles, for example, means ‘right-wing, gun-toting fanatic who hates Democrats.’ As such, a pacifist Democrat who called himself a Christian in those circles, would be lying, albeit unwittingly. To most of this world, America is Christian, just as to most Americans being an Arab means being a Muslim. Both labels have only limited usefulness.

I have been called a Christian writer, but I’m not a right-wing, gun-toting fanatic who hates Democrats, not by a long shot. So am I a Christian? Yes and no – it depends on what Christian means to you. . . But labels are almost impossible to shed.” (Ted Dekker, Tea with Hezbollah).

Two things stick out to me in this part of the book (which I’m reading online through the library).

1. How do you define Christian? What does it mean? Maybe I’m not a Christian if you follow the definition that Dekker gives above. If not, what am I? I believe in Christ and aim to understand and follow his word. What does that make me?

2. “Labels are almost impossible to shed.” What labels have I given people? Am I aiming to see beyond people’s labels or am I reinforcing them?

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