Over 11 years ago I published an article on the English word “Christian,” explaining how I had stopped using that term to refer to myself, since it is a term with very many different meanings and understood in probably thousands of different ways.
I wrote how the term “Christian” is only found 3 times in all of the New Testament writings, and it is never used by the believers and followers of Jesus Christ to refer to themselves in the New Testament.
But as things unfold in the current Post-COVID culture, it is time to update that teaching and expand upon it, showing that the larger term of “Christianity” or the “Christian religion” is found nowhere in the Bible, and is actually a religious cult that is part of the Satanic world system, and that can be used to enslave the masses.
So while 11 years ago I wrote:
Should believers of Jesus Christ today use the name “Christian” to describe themselves, even though the earliest disciples did not?
There is probably no right or wrong answer to that question.
I am not sure that is still true today, in the Post-COVID world, because the word “Christian” and “Christianity” is clearly associated today with being Pro-Pharma and Pro-Vaccine, and therefore Pro-Satan and his world system.
COVID has revealed (not caused) the very deep corruption in the American Christian Church and its idolatry in serving the ruler of this world, as opposed to serving the current ruling King who sits on the throne in the Kingdom of God.
Who Were the Followers of Jesus Christ in the New Testament?
The original disciples (students) of Jesus Christ were all men from the nation of Israel, so they were referred to as “Jews” in respect to their nationality as citizens of Israel, and in respect to their religion, the Jewish faith.
As Jesus’s teaching and influence spread, these Jewish believers were sometimes referred to as a “sect” of the Jewish religion, sometimes referred to as the “sect of the Nazarenes” (see Acts 24) because Jesus and many of his followers came from the town of Nazareth.
This was a designation used by those outside the “sect” who were not among the followers of Jesus.
When non-Jews (Gentiles) began to believe in and follow Jesus, they could no longer be called a “sect” of the Jewish religion, and this is the origin of the term “Christian” in Acts chapter 11 where it is first used.
Again, this was a designation given to the believers by those outside their groups, not from those within.
Paul was the apostle (ambassador or emissary) to the Gentile believers, but most of the groups meeting to learn more about Jesus during Paul’s ministry were mixed groups of both Gentile and Jewish believers, and Paul referred them all as a single group belonging to “The Way.”
The Greek word in the original texts is hodos, meaning a “road” or sometimes the “route” or “journey/trip” on that road leading to a destination.
It is used frequently in just its literal sense as a physical “road,” such as this verse:
Now they were on the road going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking on ahead of them; and they were amazed, and those who followed were fearful. And again He took the twelve aside and began to tell them what was going to happen to Him (Mark 10:32)
“The Way” is also used metaphorically. We see it used of John the Baptist, the forerunner to Jesus Christ who was also his cousin.
In those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the Desert of Judea and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.”
This is he who was spoken of through the prophet Isaiah: “A voice of one calling in the desert, “Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’” (Matthew 3:1-3)
It was also used frequently by Jesus himself.
Jesus used it metaphorically to refer to two different “ways/roads” in life that people can follow. Here are two different English translations of the same verses, one using “the way” and the other using “the road”:
Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many.
For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few. (Matthew 7:13-14 – ESV)
Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.
But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. (Matthew 7:13-14 – NIV)
One might be tempted to think that the “narrow” way here is referring to “Christians.”
But Jesus states “few” find and travel down this road, and Christianity today is the most populous religion in the world, and the majority of Americans refer to themselves as “Christians.”
Is it possible that most “Christians” only believe they are on the straight and narrow “road,” but are in fact on the highway to destruction?
Jesus actually answers this question for us a little later in this same chapter in Matthew:
Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’
Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ (Matthew 7:21-23 emphasis added.)
The context here is where Jesus is warning about “false prophets” who appear to be “good” because “They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.” (Matthew 7:15)
This group of people, who claim to be Jesus’s followers, are actually the “majority.”
In John chapter 14 during the upper room discourse on the night before his execution, Jesus makes it very clear that he IS The Way to God and to the Kingdom of God in Heaven.
Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:5-6 emphasis added.)
This term then, The Way, became the term that was used of those who followed Jesus, as it came directly from his own teaching. It has nothing to do with their ethnicity, or religious beliefs, as it was used for both Jews and non-Jewish (Gentiles) believers in Jesus.
In the book of the Acts of the Apostles, the term is used frequently to distinguish the true believers in Jesus.
Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples.
He went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem. (Acts 9:1-2)
Meanwhile a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was a learned man, with a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures.
He had been instructed in the way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervor and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John. He began to speak boldly in the synagogue.
When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately. (Acts 18:24-26)
Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly there for three months, arguing persuasively about the kingdom of God.
But some of them became obstinate; they refused to believe and publicly maligned the Way.
So Paul left them. He took the disciples with him and had discussions daily in the lecture hall of Tyrannus.
This went on for two years, so that all the Jews and Greeks who lived in the province of Asia heard the word of the Lord. (Acts 19:8-10 Note: I emphasized the fact that Paul left the meeting of “believers” in the “synagogue,” a word that is also translated in the English as “assembly” in James 2:2, because they did not belong to “The Way.”)
About that time there arose a great disturbance about the Way. (Acts 19:23)
However, I admit that I worship the God of our fathers as a follower of the Way, which they call a sect.
I believe everything that agrees with the Law and that is written in the Prophets, and I have the same hope in God as these men, that there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. (Acts 24:14-15)
Then Felix, who was well acquainted with the Way, adjourned the proceedings. “When Lysias the commander comes,” he said, “I will decide your case.” (Acts 24:22)
So this common term used in the First Century to refer collectively to the believers in Jesus Christ, was clearly not a new “religion” called “Christianity,” but was used to designate the true believers from the false believers.
Individually, the believers were referred to among themselves by such terms as “disciples,” “brethren,” or just “believers.”
Only those who did not belong to The Way used the term “Christian,” which is only found in 3 places in the New Testament: Acts 11:26, Acts 26:28, and 1 Peter 4:16.
When did the Christian Religion Begin?
The answer to the question “When did the Christian Religion Begin” will depend upon how one defines “religion.” Most Christians will answer this question by stating the Christian Religion began with Jesus Christ in the First Century.
But there is no new religious institution that began in the First Century, according to the Scriptures.
If we define “religion” as an institution with clearly defined doctrines of belief, then the Christian Religion began in the Fourth Century under the Roman Emperor Constantine.
This time period would also be the same time that the Catholic Church and the office of “the Pope” began.
Constantine was a Roman emperor from 306 to 337, and became the sole emperor of the Roman Empire in 324 after defeating his rivals.
He allegedly was “baptized” as a “Christian” around the year 312, and then issued the Edict of Milan in 313 giving protection to “Christians.”
In 325 the First Council of Nicaea met to deal with doctrinal issues, which produced the Nicene Creed, which defined the “doctrine” of “Christianity,” which was then declared to be the official religion of Rome in the year 380.
So for the definition of “religion” that I am using here in this article, which is an “institution” with a set of “doctrines” defining who is part of that religion and who is not, based on some “government authority” who decrees it so, then this is where I would place the beginning of “Christianity” as an officially sanctioned “religion.”
I fully understand that others have different definitions of “religion” and will therefore disagree as to when the Christian religion began.
The Corporate “Christian Church” and the Corrupt English Bible
From the time “Christianity” was declared to be the “religion” of the Roman Empire in the Fourth Century, the history of the Christian Religion for the next several hundred years can be said to be synonymous with the history of the “Catholic Church.”
Of course I have just used two English words, “Catholic” and “Church,” that people today speaking modern English probably never give any thought to, so widespread is the accepted meaning of these two English words.
Of course, English was not spoken or used in the Fourth Century. The Roman Empire was transitioning from the Greek language to the Roman language, which was “Latin,” during the First Century when the New Testament was written in Koine Greek (the common Greek language of the people.)
The word for “catholic,” which is not found in the New Testament writings of the Bible, comes originally from the Greek word katholikos, which means “according to the whole.” It developed into the Latin as catholicus.
Today it is used as an adjective describing “church,” or as a noun referring to people who belong to the “Catholic Church” (Catholics.)
The English word “church,” is found in very many verses in today’s English Bibles, but you might be surprised to learn that it actually does not exist in the original language, Koine Greek, of the New Testament portion of the Bible.
The history of the English word “church” starts with the Greek word kurios and its cognates, which means “Lord” or “Sir” or in the feminine case “Madam” or “Lady.”
The Greek word kurios is found throughout the New Testament writings, as well as the Greek translation of the Old Testament, the Septuagint, but it is never translated “church,” but in most cases “Lord.”
It is most often used for Jesus, and in the Septuagint is often used to translate the “Divine Name” of God, Yahweh or Jehova. In the English translations of the Old Testament, “lord” is in all caps (LORD) when referring to the “Divine Name” of God, although some translations do use “Yahweh” or “Jehova.” (The Hebrew has no vowels.)
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. (Psalms 23:1 – King James Version)
Jehovah is my shepherd, I do not lack. (Psalms 23:1 – Young’s Literal Translation)
Yahweh is my shepherd: I shall lack nothing. (Psalms 23:1 – World English Bible)
But the English word “church” does not come from “kurios” in the Bible. It apparently comes by way of the Germanic languages, Old English cirice, circe, from Proto-Germanic *kirika (source also of Old Saxon kirika, Old Norse kirkja, Old Frisian zerke, Middle Dutch kerke, Dutch kerk, Old High German kirihha, German Kirche). (Source.)
So when we read the English word “church” in the English translations of the Bible, which word in the original Greek is it being used as a translation?
The word in the original Greek is ekklesia, which has the meaning of an “assembly,” specifically a “called out” assembly, such as is used in legal terms to meet to conduct legal business.
It is the word used in Acts 19:32, 39, 41 where it is translated “assembly” because there is no “church” here. It was an assembly, an unruly mob actually, gathered together to try and kill Paul.
Wycliff is credited with first using the English word “church” as a translation not of the Greek text, but from the Latin Vulgate used in the Catholic Church at that time.
Another translator who did translate into English from the Greek and Hebrew texts, was William Tyndale in the early 1500s.
He rejected the word “church” for ekklesia and used “congregation” instead because:
Of grievous concern to Tyndale was the misuse of ill-gotten wealth by clergy, monks, and prelates (whom Tyndale often called the ‘spirituality,’ as here):
“What good conscience can there be among our spirituality to gather so great treasure together, and with hypocrisy of their false learning to rob almost every man of house and lands … seeking in Christ nothing but lucre?”
Tyndale said the monks and clergy crept into people’s consciences, robbed them of the faith of Christ, and caused them to give their money to build new churches and cloisters through a false faith in such works, by which all suffered:
“… the building of [churches and steeples] and such like, through the false faith that we have in them, is the decay of all the havens in England, and of all the cities, towns, highways, and shortly, of the whole commonwealth.
For since these false monsters crept up into our consciences, and robbed us of the knowledge of our Saviour Christ, making us believe in such pope-holy works, and to think that there was none other way unto heaven, we have not ceased to build them abbeys, cloisters, colleges, chauntries, and cathedral churches with high steeples, striving and envying one another, who should do most.”
Therefore, by using ‘congregation’ in his New Testament, Tyndale was both being faithful to the Greek and avoiding a usage that would contribute to the continuing exploitation or deception of the people.
Indeed this, Tyndale’s translation, together with his books and writings, have led some to credit him with “breaking the spell attached to the word church,” and “breaking the suffocating power of the medieval church.” (Source.)
However, just to make a point, Tyndale did use the word “church” to translate ekklesia in one place: Acts 19 and the unruly mob assembly. Everywhere else he used “congregation” which of course references the people, the true believers, and not an institution or corporation.
The King of England presiding over the Church of England and the Pope presiding over the Catholic Church were not amused.
Tyndale was considered a heretic and eventually was burned at the stake.
So James Charles Stuart, the King of England (King “James”), decreed in 1611 that the only “authorized” English translation of the Bible must use the word “church” to translate ekklesia, because it reinforced his authority over the “Church of England,” as well as the Pope’s authority over the “Catholic Church.”
This error in the English translation of the Bible continues on to this day in most modern translations of the English Bible, because the largest segment of our society purchasing bibles today are those employed by the American Corporate Christian Church, and their clergy, which is a $TRILLION dollar industry.
A study conducted in 2016 estimated that religion in America (which is primarily the Christian religion) was “worth $1.2 trillion, more than the combined revenue of the top 10 technology companies in the country, including Apple, Amazon, and Google.” (Source.)
Ekklesia in the New Testament is simply the congregation or assembly of those who belong to The Way.
So whenever you see the incorrect word “church” used in the Bible, you can use the word “congregation” or “assembly” instead.
A few English translations (those not copyrighted by the large Christian publishing houses), such as the World English Bible, and Young’s Literal Translation, will dare to translate ekklesia without using the word “church.”
The False Church Leaders versus The Head of The Body of Christ
Not only is the concept of a “Christian” religion and the institute of the “Church” not found among the followers of The Way in the New Testament congregations, neither is there any centralized authority figure as we find today among the “clergy,” the professional Christians referred to as “pastors,” “priests,” and other honorary titles.
All the leaders in the early meetings of those belonging to the way, including the “apostles” who spent the most time with Jesus while he walked on the earth, were referred to by their first names, with no official title before them.
But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one Master and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven.
Nor are you to be called ‘teacher,’ for you have one Teacher, the Christ.
The greatest among you will be your servant. For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. (Matthew 23:8-12)
“Rabbi” was the common title put before a religious leader’s name during the days of Jesus, but today you can substitute “Rabbi” (a Jewish term) for the Christian ones, such as “Pastor.”
The English word “Pastor” is typically only used in one verse in the New Testament, in Ephesians 4:11 (we can thank King Jimmy and his “authorized version” for that word too), and it is mistranslated, because every other place where the Greek word in that verse is used, poimēn, it is translated as “Shepherd.”
Jesus used it to refer to himself:
I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep.
So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.
I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father, and I lay down my life for the sheep.
I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. (John 10:11-16 – emphasis added)
I have an entire article on this topic which conclusively shows from both the Old Testament and New Testament usage of the word “Shepherd,” that human shepherds always fall short and are usually corrupt, and that God has always desired to be the sole Shepherd of his people. See:
Is “Pastor” A Biblical Title for Church Leaders?
We have also documented over the years that there are just as many pedophiles and predators among these Christian leaders as there are among the general population, if not more.
Southern Baptist Church: Leader in Foster Care and Adoption – Home to Pedophiles
Pedophilia Crimes Against Children Inside and Outside the Church – Time to Acknowledge the Child Sex Trafficking Problem
The Catholic Church and Pedophilia: Trafficking Children as Sex Slaves
In contrast, the New Testament portion of the Bible teaches that all believers who are part of The Way are members of a “body” where Jesus Christ is the “Head.”
He is the head of the body, the assembly, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. (Colossians 1:18)
He has lost connection with the Head, from whom the whole body, supported and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows as God causes it to grow. (Colossians 2:19)
Christ is the head of the assembly, his body, of which he is the Savior. (Ephesians 5:23)
For as the body is one, and has many members, and all the members of the body, being many, are one body; so also is Christ.
(1 Corinthians 12:12)
The human leaders within the Body of Christ who belong to The Way, are referred to as “elders” (older men who showed maturity and wisdom) and “deacons” (literally “servants” who were trustworthy, especially with handling finances), but they never ruled in an official “office” or carried a “title” before their name.
They are to lead by example, as servants.
But Jesus summoned them, and said, “You know that the rulers of the nations lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them.
It shall not be so among you, but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. Whoever desires to be first among you shall be your bondservant, even as the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:25-28)
And then, on his last night together with his disciples, just before his execution, he demonstrated this kind of leadership by example.
Now before the feast of the Passover, Jesus, knowing that his time had come that he would depart from this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.
During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he came from God, and was going to God, arose from supper, and laid aside his outer garments.
He took a towel, and wrapped a towel around his waist. Then he poured water into the basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
Then he came to Simon Peter. He said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?”
Jesus answered him, “You don’t know what I am doing now, but you will understand later.”
Peter said to him, “You will never wash my feet!”
Jesus answered him, “If I don’t wash you, you have no part with me.”
Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head!”
Jesus said to him, “Someone who has bathed only needs to have his feet washed, but is completely clean. You are clean, but not all of you.”
For he knew him who would betray him, therefore he said, “You are not all clean.”
So when he had washed their feet, put his outer garment back on, and sat down again, he said to them:
“Do you know what I have done to you? You call me, ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord.’
You say so correctly, for so I am.
If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.
For I have given you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you.” (John 13:1-15)
Is It Time to Leave the Christian Cult?
As I wrote in the introduction of this article, the word “Christian” and “Christianity” is clearly associated today with being Pro-Pharma and Pro-Vaccine, and therefore Pro-Satan and his world system.
I know there are still good people who belong to the Christian religion and churches, just as there are still some honest and good people probably still working in the Satanic medical system.
But just as the medical system is thoroughly corrupt, so too is the Christian religion and their “churches” thoroughly corrupt as a “religious system.”
And so many people, especially those who earn their living from being leaders in the corporate Christian church, are so dependent on corporate Christianity, that it is very difficult to break away, even if they do see the corruption and acknowledge some of the things I have written here today as true.
If you are comfortable with your associations within your Christian organization, then this article is not for you. You need to continue seeking God’s specific direction and plan for your life from Jesus Christ himself, and not something that Brian Shilhavy writes.
But this article is for those of you who are standing firm against the medical tyranny around you, and you see it in your church as well, but you feel guilty about leaving the church, because you have been taught your whole life that to be a good “Christian,” you need to join and be part of a local church.
I hope that what I have written here today will show that you are NOT bound to that false teaching, and that not only are you free to leave the Christian Cult called “The Church,” but God may very well be calling you to shake the dust off of your shoes as you leave, as a testimony against the idolaters, and the judgment that soon awaits them.
Everything that has been prophesied for the end of the ages seems to now be coming true, especially Revelation 18:23:
The light of a lamp will never shine in you again. The voice of bridegroom and bride will never be heard in you again. Your merchants were the world’s great men. By your magic spell all the nations were led astray. (Revelation 18:23)
The English words “magic spell” used here represent pharmakeia in the original Greek, which should be translated medicine/drugs/vaccines.
And the “merchants” are clearly the Globalists and Big Pharma who are committing mass murder and genocide in order to reduce the world’s population.
If we want to escape the judgment that is soon coming, there is only One Way forward.
I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many.
For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few. – Jesus Christ
Have you received Salvation from Jesus the Messiah? Time is running out. Jesus will return very soon. The signs of His return are everywhere in this crazy world we are living in. Please read below so that you can be saved. Jesus is the only way to Heaven. The Words below are directly from the Bible, so you can trust them.
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14:6)
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. (John 3:16-17)
If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture says,“Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all )is rich to all who call upon Him. For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:9-13)
“As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. IF YOU KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. (John 15:9)
For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)
For those of us who persevere and do what Jesus says to do, we have this to look forward to in eternity: And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
The Bible – New King James Version, NKJV