The questions are often asked, “Who is a Christian? How do I know a Christian if I meet one? Does Matthew, Luke, or John pass for a Christian? Is everyone who raises up his hand in response to a preacher’s call to repentance a Christian?
Does everyone who passes through the church isle to the altar pass for a Christian? Are all those in church pews during church services Christians? Who is a Christian? Finally you may ask, “Am I a Christian?”
A soul winner on evangelism met a drunk drifting down a lane. In his attempt to help him discover the true purpose of living’ he asked, “Are you a Christian?” The answer came quick and sharp “What do you think I am? A Pagan?” This is a pitiful point.
A brilliant preacher full of energy and zeal got the pass mark of his congregation. But his life at home showed a pattern of pride and jealousy found in the fallen angel – Lucifer.
A gifted and talented lady-soloist sings like an angel and prays like a prophet but she talks and acts with thunder and volcano in her voice. Her red-hot temper, contentiousness and confusion are marks of her presence at home or at work. Are these Christians? A ‘Niagara’ of stormy words is an indication of the absence of Christ in the heart.
Being a Christian is not a new label: It is a new life. The word ‘Christian’ first occurred in the New Testament. It was not in the Old Testament. “The disciples were called Christians first in Antioch” (Acts11: 26). From the first use of a word, the true meaning and significance of the word become clear. Disciples were called Christians.
‘Disciple’ is a prominent word in the New Testament. It did not have any place in the Jewish Religion. One of the disciples in Antioch referred to as a Christian was in Jewish religion (Galatians 1:13) before he became a Christian. Living by the Mosiac code of “ordinance, touch not, taste not, handle not,” the ceremonial washing in holy water is ignorance of true discipleship and Christianity. Christianity centres on Jesus Christ – His love, life and light. A Christian therefore is the person who lives the life of Christ as revealed in the New Testament.
The New Testament opens with Jesus Christ who saves from sin (Matthew 1:21) and closes with Jesus Christ, the King who will come quickly – Revelation 22:20. Christ died to make you a Christian. He did not have to die to make you a churchgoer; you can do that on your own. But you cannot overcome sin in your natural human nature. Christ died to suffer for you-through Christ’s merit.
If you confess your sins and ask for pardon and grace you will be forgiven. Peace and joy will come into your heart. You will never be the same again. Christ died to make you live – through definite faith in His precious Blood; your heart and life are changed.
Christ died to reconcile you to God. Through His meritorious sacrifice, a love relationship is established between you and God. Christ died to give you a new heart and life like His. You can only enjoy a new heart at the expense of another.
The Christian life radiates the beauty of Christ’s lifestyle – humility, obedience, love, integrity and newness of life. Check up if you are a Christian. If not, why not? “Be not deceived: God is not mocked: For whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” (Galatians 6:7).
Remember that “not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven: but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in Heaven.”
You can decide to confess your sins to God today and repent – make a wholehearted change of life. Ask for pardon from God in the Name of Jesus, the only one Mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5). Believe God for His mercy. Changed and transformed, begin to live a Christian life.
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