What does it mean to be a Christian?

Home / What does it mean to be a Christian?


BeAC

Being a Christian is more than identifying yourself with a particular religion or affirming a certain value system. Consider the following truths found in Scripture.

God Is Sovereign Creator. Contemporary thinking says man is the product of evolution. But the Bible says we were created by a personal God to love, serve, and enjoy endless fellowship with Him. The New Testament reveals it was Jesus Himself who created everything (John 1:3; Colossians 1:16). Therefore, He also owns and rules everything (Psalm103:19). That means He has authority over our lives and we owe Him absolute allegiance, obedience, and worship.

God Is Holy. God is absolutely and perfectly holy (Isaiah 6:3), therefore He cannot commit or approve of evil (James1:13). God requires holiness of us as well. 1 Peter 1:16 says, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

Mankind Is Sinful. According to Scripture, everyone is guilty of sin; “There is no man who does not sin” (1 Kings 8:46). That doesn’t mean we’re incapable of performing acts of human kindness. But we’re utterly incapable of understanding, loving, or pleasing God on our own (Romans 3:10-12).

Sin Demands a Penalty. God’s holiness and justice demand that all sin be punished by separation from Him (Isaiah 59:2) death (Ezekiel 18:4). That’s why simply changing our patterns of behavior can’t solve our sin problem or eliminate its consequences.

Jesus Is Savior and Lord. Even though God’s justice demands death for sin, His love has provided a Savior who paid the penalty and died for sinners (1 Peter 3:18). Christ’s death satisfied the demands of God’s justice and Christ’s perfect life satisfied the demands of God’s holiness (2 Corinthians 5:21), thereby enabling Him to forgive and save those who place their faith in Him (Romans 3:26).  Romans 10:9 says, “If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved.”

The Character of Saving Faith. True faith is always accompanied by repentance from sin. Repentance is agreeing with God that you are sinful (confessing your sins to Him), making a conscious choice to turn from sin (Luke 13:3, 5; 1 Thessalonians 1:9) to pursue Christ (Matthew 11:28-30) and obey Him (1 John 2:3). It isn’t enough to believe certain facts about Christ. Even Satan and his demons believe in the true God (James 2:19), but they don’t love and obey Him. True saving faith always responds in obedience (Ephesians 2:10).

If you have questions about how you can become a Christian, or want help in knowing how to live the Christian life, please write to Hope Bible Church or call (443) 200-HOPE.