What The Bible Teaches: Who is a Christian?

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(Last Updated On: May 4, 2016)

The meaning of Christianity and what it means to be a Christian has greatly been distorted in this day and age. As of such, many people are of the view that regular attendance to services, or believing in Jesus Christ and that there is a or simple professing to be Christians actually means they are Christians.

This couldn’t be more further from the truth.

The word ‘Christian’ can only be found three times in the New Testament (Acts 11:26; 26:28; 1 Peter 4:16). Followers of Jesus Christ were first called “Christians” in Antioch (Acts 11:26) because they believed in Christ and followed His example and teachings. The word was initially used by their detractors in a derogatory sense, but believers embraced the term as a badge of honor.

While it is true that the first-century Christians did follow the teachings, practices and example of Jesus Christ, since then the term has virtually lost its meaning—as it’s usually not accompanied by the same way of life and understanding. Today many claim to be Christians yet don’t really follow Jesus’ teachings.

So who really is a Christian?

A Christian is an individual that

  1. Practices or obeys the teachings of the Bible
  2. Surrender and dedicate his/her life to Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior
  3. Has repented of his/her sins and is baptize by immersion in water
  4. Lives to please God by forsaking the sinful lifestyles of the world
  5. Expresses an inner-change
  6. Attends church regularly
  7. Imitate Christ, the prophets and holy of the Bible
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  1. Practices or obeys the teachings of the Bible

 

Many people profess to be Christians but their lifestyle and beliefs are contrary to what the Bible teaches. Christianity is not just something you say, but it is an action.

 

 

As a Christian, you therefore not only read the Bible on a regular basis, active in prayer and fasting so as to build a closer with God, but you also practices and believe what the Bible teaches.

Christianity is therefore a lifestyle.

We are in a sinful and unfriendly world that is fill with many temptations which makes it very difficult for someone to follow Jesus Christ, but it is not impossible. Every generation has its share of temptations and difficulties in serving God, but in every generation you have people that have fully dedicated their lives to Christ. They did not do so by their own strength but they drew from the strength and encouragement of other believers and God himself.

You can also if you truly want to be a Christian.

  1. Surrender and dedicate his/her life to Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior

 

As a result of their vow to serve God, a Christian therefore surrenders and dedicates his or her life to the teachings of the Bible.

 

As a sign of surrender, Christians refuses to live their lives contrary to the Word of God which is the Bible. At times they will make mistakes, but when they do they quickly repent and continue their Christian journey.

 

Christianity is a journey that ends when you die or the coming of Christ, whichever comes first.

 

  1. Has repented of his/her sins and is baptize by immersion in water

 

Repentance means that you have acknowledged that you have sinned against God, or the life you have been living is contrary to the teachings of the Bible, and therefore seeks to make a change.

When you repent it means that you have made a change.

 

Repentance therefore is the first process of being a Christian. Repentance is not only something you say, but is an action. You show that you repent by being baptize. Baptism is not only an outward sign that a person have accepted Christ, but according to Romans 6:3-6, baptism is also a burial. It is a ceremony in which we crucify or put to death the old sinful nature.

Being a Christian is also much more than professing to be a Christian. Many people get up and say that they are Christians and that they have been Born Again (meaning a new person), but they are not. The biblical meaning of being Born Again is that you have been baptize and fill with the Holy Spirit according to St. John 3: 5

“Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God”

See also:What Must I Do To be Saved?

This means that a person cannot simple get up and say he or she is a Christian, you must go through the process, and simple asking for forgiveness and saying a little prayer is not it. YOU MUST BE baptized to start the process. Acts 2:38 tells you

Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the
Holy Ghost.”

  1. Lives to please God by forsaking the sinful lifestyles of the world

 

We are living in a world that has its fair share of temptations and being a Christian does not exempt one from facing temptations, on the contrary it is when you give your life to God you will face the most temptations as you can no longer satisfy the sinful nature of the flesh.

Your flesh will always want satisfaction, for example Christians are often tempted to have sexual intercourse outside of ; while some Christians may find it very difficult to control their temper at times.

Being a Christian is therefore a struggle to live for God. What you want to do may not be the right thing to do even if other people are doing it. We must understand that we are in the world, but not of the world (John 17:16). Because we are not of the world, we cannot do what the world does. For example, as a Christian you may be out with your friends and they want to rob someone or break into a store. As a Christian you may be tempted to go along with them, but you can’t. Even if it was a practice you and your friends use to do.

Whatever you do, it must be pleasing to God. A Christian whole purpose is to please God (2 Timothy 2:4).

  1. Expresses an inner-change

 

Because a Christian whole purpose is to live a life that is pleasing to God, he therefore by studying his Bible, will try to adapt his life to the teachings of the Bible. As he does that there is a change that begins to take place from the inside then it shows on the outside.

People start witnessing that this person is different, a child of God.

  1. Attends church regularly

 

The Bible tells us that we should not neglect the gathering together of the saints (Hebrews 10:25). What this means is that the individual will attend regular church services as by doing so will grow spiritually and emotionally. The main purpose of attending church services is to:

  1. To worship and praise God
  2. To learn about God
  3. For strength and encouragement

In my experiences, Christians who rarely attend church services after sometime becomes spiritually weak.

  1. Imitate Christ, the prophets and holy men of the Bible

As a result of all the above, Christians will start to imitate Christ and his servants as he learns about them.

See also: Is there a heaven and hell?

Conclusion

Going to church occasionally, and on special occasions such as Christmas, New Year’s Day, Easter Sunday does not make you a Christian. It is much more than that and even much more than attending church regularly, going to Bible Study and doing missions work.

It is a lifestyle!

Christians are expected to be different from people in the world, they are called to be separated from the sinful actions of the world and to serve God and him only.

Christianity can be very challenging but it is one that is very rewarding. Being a Christian for over 10 years is the best life I could ever live. Honestly, I would not exchange my life another person who is not a Christian. As a Christian I am always aware of God’s provision and protection. I can freely say that if God was not on my side I would have died long time ago as many times I came close to death but because of his protection I was delivered. My personal experiences with God have led me to believe that being a Christian is the best life anyone could ever live.

See also:What Must I Do To be Saved?

I therefore would encourage everyone to surrender their life to God

From the founder of BibleWayMag comes a powerful devotional and motivational book An Empowered Life Wake up each morning with an inspirational and motivational word to take you higher Get Your Copy Now or website my personal website driventosuccess.co for more details and other books.

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