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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Christ the Saviour (Pantokrator), a 6th-century encaustic icon from Saint Catherine's Monastery, Mount Sinai.

Christ is the English term for the Greek Χριστός (Khristós) meaning "the anointed one".[1] It is a translation of the Hebrew מָשִׁיחַ (Māšîaḥ), usually transliterated into English as Messiah.

The word is often misunderstood to be the surname of Jesus due to the numerous mentions of Jesus Christ in the Christian Bible. The word is in fact used as a title, hence its common reciprocal use Christ Jesus, meaning The Anointed One, or The Messiah, Jesus. Followers of Jesus became known as Christians because they believed that Jesus was the Christ, or Messiah, prophesied about in the Tanakh (which Christians term the Old Testament). The majority of Jews reject this claim and are still waiting for Christ to come (see Jewish Messiah). Most Christians now wait for the Second Coming of Christ when they believe he will fulfill the rest of the Messianic prophecy.

The area of Christian theology focusing on the identity, life, teachings and works of Jesus, is known as Christology.



A series of articles on

The spelling Christ (Greek Genitive: τοῦ Χριστοῦ, toú Christoú,; Nominative: ὁ Χριστὸς, ho Christós) in English was standardized in the 18th century, when, in the spirit of the Enlightenment, spellings of certain words were changed to fit their Greek or Latin origins. Prior to this, in Old and Middle English, the word was usually spelled Crist, the i being pronounced either as /iː/, preserved in the names of churches such as St Katherine Cree, or as a short /ɪ/, preserved in the modern pronunciation of Christmas). The spelling "Christ" is attested from the 14th century.[2]

The term Christ (or similar) appears in English and most European languages, owing to the Greek usage of Khristós (transcribed in Latin as Christus) in the New Testament as a description for Jesus. In the Septuagint version of the Hebrew Bible, it was used to translate into Greek the Hebrew mashiach (messiah), meaning "anointed."[3]

Khristós in classical Greek usage could mean covered in oil, and is thus a literal translation of messiah.

Orthodox Christian views

This section contains views that have generally been agreed upon among Christians for two millennia. The New Testament records that the Messiah, long awaited, had come and describes this savior as The Christ. The apostle Peter, in what has become a famous proclamation of faith among Christians since the first century, said, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."[Matthew 16:16]

Teachings about Jesus and testimonies about what he accomplished during his three-year public ministry are found throughout the New Testament. Core biblical teachings about the person of Jesus Christ may be summarized that Jesus Christ was and forever is fully God (divine) and fully human in one sinless person at the same time.[4] Scripture asserts that Jesus was conceived, by a miraculous work of the Holy Spirit, in the womb of his virgin mother Mary without a human father.[5]

The Jewish historian Flavius Josephus's Antiquities of the Jews says:

Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man; for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was Christ. And when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him; for he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him. And the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.


Various texts titled "Apostles' Creed", dating from the third century A.D., and still in current use among Christians, describe Jesus as

  • The only son of God the Father
  • Having the Virgin Mary as mother
  • Crucified on the authority of Pontius Pilate
  • Having been dead and buried
  • Having "descended into hell" or "descended to the dead" (sometimes omitted)
  • Rising from the dead after 3 days or "on the third day"
  • Having "ascended into heaven"
  • Sitting "at the right hand" of God
  • Destined to return to earth, and then to pass judgment on all humans who have ever lived

Heterodox Christian views

This section contains views and doctrines at variance with an official or orthodox position.


Christian Science

In the theology of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, the religion's founder, wrote in her book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, that:

The invisible Christ was imperceptible to the so-called personal senses, whereas Jesus appeared as a bodily existence. This dual personality of the unseen and the seen, the spiritual and material, the eternal Christ and the corporeal Jesus manifest in flesh, continued until the Master's ascension, when the human, material concept, or Jesus, disappeared, while the spiritual self, or Christ, continues to exist in the eternal order of divine Science, taking away the sins of the world, as the Christ has always done, even before the human Jesus was incarnate to mortal eyes."[7]

Eddy wrote that while Jesus, as a material man, was not the exact ontological or quantitative equivalent to God, he thoroughly embodied the spiritual sonship of God's nature. In Christian Science, the Christ, or divine manifestation of God, continues forever to enlighten humanity and to destroy sickness, sin, and death.[8]


The gnostics generally believed not in a Jesus who was a divine person with a human form, but in a spiritual christ who dwelt in Jesus. Through the spiritual path of gnosticism, followers of these schools believed that they could experience the same knowledge, or gnosis. Many of the Gnostic texts say that in order to be called worthy of the title 'Christian' one must also be anointed with Holy oil and that the water baptism alone is incomplete.[citation needed] The Gospel of Philip states several such instances, one being:

The 'Chrism' is superior to baptism, for it is from the word 'Chrism' that we have been called 'Christians,' certainly not because of the word 'baptism.' And it is because of the 'Chrism' that the 'Christ' has his name. For the Father anointed the Son, the Son anointed the apostles, and the apostles anointed us. He who has been anointed possesses everything. He possesses the Resurrection, the Light, the Cross, the Holy Spirit. The Father gave him this in the bridal chamber, he merely accepted the gift. The Father was in the Son and the Son in the Father. This is the Kingdom of Heaven.[9]

Other Gnostic texts with Jesus Christ include the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Mary.


In Neo-Theosophy, C.W. Leadbeater promulgated a Nestorian/Gnostic Christology that was taught by Alice A. Bailey, is taught by Benjamin Creme, and is accepted today by most Theosophists. This theology asserts that a powerful being from the higher spiritual planes known as the Maitreya overshadowed the being Theosophists know as the Master Jesus during the ministry of Jesus, such that there were two beings (two souls) in one body—Maitreya was the Christ and the Master Jesus was Jesus; the combination of the two beings functioned as Jesus Christ. [10][11] Those adherent to the Ascended Master Teachings, a group of religions derived from Theosophy, believe in the existence of the Maitreya; however, they believe that although he encouraged the mission of Jesus, he did not actually overshadow Jesus. [12]

Western Wisdom Teachings

In the WWT, the Solar System is the Creation[13] of the collective Great Being God - Elohim, its threefold Architect and sustainer; the celestial bodies of this portion of Space, permeated by different planes of existence having varying density and vibration, are home to various life waves of virgin spirits, differentiated within God Himself, and in different evolutionary stages of consciousness. The Sun, depicted above, is seen as the seat of the Christ Spirit, The Son, Who has become partially confined to the Earth, as its Regent, through the Great Sacrifice of Christ-Jesus on Calvary.
See also: Second Coming and Esoteric Christianity

In the Rosicrucian writings of Max Heindel, also known as Western Wisdom Teachings, there is a distinction to be made between Jesus and the Christ.[14] Jesus is considered a high Initiate of the human life wave (the cycle of rebirth) and of a singularly pure type of mind, vastly superior to the great majority of the present humanity. Among the esoteric insights into the composite nature of Christ-Jesus and the uplifting mission of the Christ, the Esoteric Christian philosophy of the Rosicrucians teaches that:

On Golgotha, the physical body of Jesus was destroyed amid certain phenomena recorded in the Bible, and the Christ Spirit drew into the earth. Up to that time the earth had been worked upon FROM WITHOUT. As the group spirits guide animals from without, so the earth had been guided in its orbit and mankind had been led on the path of evolution almost entirely by Jehovah, but from that time the Christ became our indwelling Earth Spirit. He now guides our planet in its orbit, AND IS ENDEAVORING TO REPLACE THE REGIME OF WAR INAUGURATED BY JEHOVAH, ON THE ONE HAND, AND THE MARTIAL LUCIFER SPIRITS, ON THE OTHER, BY A REGIME OF ALTRUISM, a reign of UNIVERSAL FRIENDSHIP. We hear much about UNIVERSAL BROTHERHOOD, but it is not necessary to form societies to proclaim that we are brothers; everyone knows this; there is not need of calling attention to this fact. Brothers and sisters are not always harmonious, but they must be harmonious if they are to be friends, and therefore Christ instituted a much higher ideal when He called His disciples friends: "Ye are my friends if ye do whatsoever I have commanded you."[15]

From the viewpoint of the Rosicrucian cosmology, our home Solar system is God's habitation;[16] the Sun is the indwelling "bright morning-star"[17] of the Christ Spirit -- the "Sun of righteousness," the "Light of the World," the Solar Logos[18] -- Who founded the catholic, meaning 'universal', lofty Christian religion, the only religion that is looking for the “One Who is to come again”; whereas the Moon(s) is(are) the working platform of the lunar God Jehovah, the builder of concrete bodies or forms (and, thus, the giver of children) and the founder of all separative race-religions, that still look for the “One Who is to come”; and Mars (not Venus), the red planet, is the abode of the fallen selfish Lucifer spirits. Further, it is described that the great Sun-spirit Christ became the Regent of our planet at the moment He secured His admission into the Earth[19] through the Cleansing Blood ("... the soul of all flesh is in the blood...")[Leviticus 17:11,14] that flowed at the crucifixion of Christ-Jesus.[20]

Hindu view

Swami Tripurari states:

... in theory the sinners of the world are the beneficiaries of Christ’s sacrifice, but it is God the father for whose pleasure Christ underwent the crucifixion, even when the father’s joy in this scenario lies in the salvation of sinners. Christ represents the intermediary between God and humanity, and his life aptly illustrates the fact that it is sacrifice by which we come to meet our maker. Thus in Christ the Divine teaches us “the way” more than he does the goal. The Christ conception represents “the way” in the sense that the way is sacrifice, out of which love arises. The Krishna conception represents that for which we not only should, but must sacrifice, compelled by the Godhead’s irresistible attributes, etc. depicted therein.[21]


The use of "Χ," derived from Chi, the Greek alphabet initial, as an abbreviation for Christ (most commonly in the abbreviation "Χmas") is often misinterpreted as a modern secularization of the term. Thus understood, the centuries-old English word Χmas, is actually a shortened form of CHmas, which is, itself, a shortened form for Christmas. Christians are sometimes referred to- in a semi-satirical manner- as "Xtians", with the 'X' replacing 'Christ.[22]

Slang usage

The interjection "christ!" is sometimes used as a sign of surprise or anger, without a direct religious reference—that is, as an exclamation. Some Christians understand this usage to be in violation of the commandment against taking the Lord's name in vain, although the severity of the transgression varies among different groups of believers.

The prohibition against use as an interject was generally taken more seriously in the past, to the point where it was not only considered socially improper, but a sin against God. Many maintain this view.

See also


  1. ^ Etymology Online: Christ
  2. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, s.v. "Christ"
  3. ^ Etymology Online: messiah
  4. ^ Grudem, Wayne A. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine. Zondervan, 1994. ISBN 0310286700
  5. ^ Matthew 1:18-25, Luke 1:35, Luke 3:23
  6. ^ Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews, Book 18, Chapter 3, Section 3
  7. ^ Science and Health 334
  8. ^ Template:Http:// sci.htm
  9. ^ Lee, A. D. (2000). Pagans and Christians in late antiquity. Routledge. p. 45. ISBN 9780415138925. 
  10. ^ Leadbeater, C.W. The Masters and the Path Adyar, Madras, India: 1925--Theosophical Publishing House Page 278
  11. ^ Creme, Benjamin Maitreya's Mission—Volume III Amsterdam:1997 Share International Foundtion Page 64
  12. ^ Prophet, Mark Studies of the Human Aura Colorado Springs, Colorado: 1975 - Summit University Press (Claimed to have been dictated from the ascended master Kuthumi") Page 17
  13. ^ Note: see also Formation and evolution of the Solar System
  14. ^ Max Heindel, The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception (Part III, Chapter XV: Christ and His Mission), November 1909, ISBN 0-911274-34-0
  15. ^ Heindel, Max, How Shall We Know Christ at His Coming?, May 1913 (stenographic report of a lecture, Los Angeles), ISBN 0-911274-64-2
  16. ^ Note: cf. Psalm 19:1-6
  17. ^ Note: cf. Revelation 22:16
  18. ^ Note: cf. Matthew 17:2 Revelation 1:16
  19. ^ Note: cf. Ephesians 4:9-10
  20. ^ The Rosicrucian Fellowship. Rosicrucian Bible MysteriesPDF. Compilation, 2001
  21. ^ Tripurari, Swami, Christ, Krishna, Caitanya, The Harmonist, May 31, 2009.
  22. ^ "X". Oxford English Dictionary. Oxford University Press. 2nd ed. 1989.

Further reading

  • De La Torre, Miguel A., "The Quest for the Cuban Christ: A Historical Search," University Press of Florida, 2002.
  • Harpur, Tom, The Pagan Christ: Recovering the Lost Light. Toronto: Thomas Allen Publishers, 2004.
  • McDowell, Joshua and Don Stewart, Handbook of Today's Religions, Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1983.
  • Ott, Ludwig, Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, 1957.
  • Michalopoulos, Dimitris (2006): "Islam and Christendom: The distorted relationship". Entelequia. Revista Interdisciplinar, 2, Otoño 2006. Págs. 201-206.

External links


Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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From Wikiquote

Christ is a Greek word that literally means "anointed" and is used for the messiah.

This is a disambiguation page; that is, one that points to other pages that might otherwise have the same name. If you followed a link here, you might want to go back and fix that link to point to the appropriate specific page.

1911 encyclopedia

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From LoveToKnow 1911

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary



Most common English words: speaking « circumstances « sitting « #787: Christ » begin » wait » laughed


Old English crist, from Latin Chrīstus, from Ancient Greek Χριστός (Khristos), proper noun use of χριστός (khristos), anointed), in translation of Hebrew משיח (māshīaχ), anointed) (see messiah).


Proper noun




  1. (Judaism) "The Lord's 'anointed one' (or 'messiah')" predicted in Jewish prophecy.
    For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. (Matthew 24:24)
  2. (Christianity) (literally) The title given to Jesus of Nazareth, seen as fulfilling messianic prophecy; often treated as a personal name.

Related terms


See also




Christ (plural Christs)

  1. (art) A figure or other artistic depiction of Jesus Christ.




  1. An expletive, whose use is considered blasphemous by most Christians.





Jésus-Christ: IPA: /ʒezykri/ (Catholic), IPA: /ʒezykrist/ (Protestant)

Proper noun

Christ (Catholic) , le Christ (Protestant) m

  1. Christ

Related terms



  • IPA: /kʀɪst/


Christ m. (genitive Christen, plural Christen)

  1. a Christian (male) (female=Christin)
    • 1888: Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, Der Antichrist, § 58
      Nihilist und Christ: das reimt sich, das reimt sich nicht bloss.
      Nihilist and Christian: they rhyme, and do not merely rhyme…


Up to date as of January 23, 2010
(Redirected to Konrad Hermann Heinrich Christ article)

From Wikispecies


Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki

Anointed, the Greek translation of the Hebrew word rendered "Messiah" (q.v.), the official title of our Lord, occurring 514 times in the New Testament. It denotes that He was anointed or consecrated to His great redemptive work as Prophet, Priest, and King of his people. He is Jesus the Christ (Acts 17:3; 18:5; Mt 22:42), the Anointed One. He is thus spoken of by Isaiah (Isa 61:1), and by Daniel (Dan 9:24-26), who styles him "Messiah the Prince."

The Messiah is the same person as "the seed of the woman" (Gen 3:15), "the seed of Abraham" (Gen 22:18), the "Prophet like unto Moses" (Deut 18:15), "the priest after the order of Melchizedek" (Ps 1104), "the rod out of the stem of Jesse" (Isa 11:1,10), the "Immanuel," the virgin's son (Isa 7:14), "the branch of Jehovah" (Isa 4:2), and "the messenger of the covenant" (Mal 3:1). This is he "of whom Moses in the law and the prophets did write." The Old Testament Scripture is full of prophetic declarations regarding the Great Deliverer and the work He was to accomplish. Jesus the Christ is Jesus the Great Deliverer, the Anointed One, the Saviour of men. This name denotes that Jesus was divinely appointed, commissioned, and accredited as the Saviour of men (Heb 5:4; Isa 11:2-4; 49:6; Jn 5:37; Acts 2:22).

To believe that "Jesus is the Christ" is to believe that he is the Anointed, the Messiah of the prophets, the Saviour sent of God, that He was, in a word, what he claimed to be. This is to believe the gospel, by the faith of which alone men can be brought unto God. That Jesus is the Christ is the testimony of God, and the faith of this constitutes a Christian (1Cor 12:3; 1Jn 5:1).

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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