t is very common to think of Paul as a Christian. After all, so much of what is called Christian is based on his teachings which are a part of the Scriptures all Christians recognize. But surprisingly Paul did not actually refer to himself as a Christian. That is a misnomer. Defending himself before procurator Felix Paul he said the following:
“I admit to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect I do serve the God of our fathers, believing everything that is in accordance with the Torah and that is written in the Prophets” (Acts 24:14 NASB).
“The Way” was the name of the movement that the Jewish Apostle mentioned. Standing before another a council, Paul identified himself as “a Pharisee, son of Pharisees”. Surprisingly in this passage, he does not say he was Christian who once used to be a Pharisee (Acts 23:6). Paul implied that he was still a Pharisee. Defending himself before King Agrippa Paul insisted that he always “lived as a Pharisee according to the strictest sect” (Acts 26:5). Once again Paul says he was a Pharisee! Was he trying to mislead the king? Did he lie to the council in Acts 23:6? The Apostle spoke these words long after his encounter with the risen Christ on the road to Damascus. Somone may argue that Paul lied, others will insist that he told the truth. But one thing is clear, Paul does not call himself a Christian in the New Testament.