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What does it mean to be a Christian? January 12, 2010

Posted by Henry in Matters of the Faith.
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A common definition of a Christian is: a follower of Christ. But is that all there is to it? In looking at this definition one could argue that Christ was simply a philosopher who existed over 2000 years ago and that His followers are simply adherents to His teachings thus ranking Christianity as just one amongst many religions from which anyone can choose. Indeed some see Christianity as little more than a “moral code” expressed in allegory, denying the existence of God and His Son Jesus Christ. It is easy to see how such a distorted view might come about if one does not know exactly what Christianity is all about and especially given that some religious figures have claimed over the years that “all paths” lead to God. But do they really?

Scripture (the Bible) tells us that Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, came into the world as the Messiah, first to the Jew and then to the Gentiles (Rom 1:16). Jesus came to deliver the “Good News” which is the Gospel unto salvation. Jesus said He came to seek and to save that which was lost (Luke 19:10). But salvation from what some might ask? To answer this question we need to go back to the beginning.

In the beginning (see the Genesis account) God created the world and everything in it and He made man (Adam and Eve) and gave him dominion over everything on the earth. God set Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden and everything God created was good. But sin entered the world as a result of Adam’s disobedience in eating the fruit of the tree that was forbidden to him to eat of.  God warned Adam that the day he ate of the fruit of the forbidden tree he would surely die (Gen 3:3), and since that time man has been at enmity with God because of sin. Man no longer had the communion with God he enjoyed in the Garden and he was now separated and condemned to eternal death because of his sin. Adam did not die physically as it were, but he died spiritually. But the “story” did not end there because God purposed even before the foundation of the world (Rev 13:8, 1 Pet 1:18-20) to save mankind from his sins so that man can inherit eternal Life.

Scripture tells us that we are all sinners who have come short of the glory of God (Rom 3:23). Scripture also tells us that “it is appointed unto man once to die but after that comes the judgement (Heb 9:27).” It is for this reason that we need to be saved. To be saved means to be restored to a state where we can again have full fellowship and communion with God like Adam and Eve did before the fall, and indeed to be saved from eternal damnation. Salvation can be found in no other than Jesus Christ however. Jesus said, “I am the way the truth and the life, no man cometh unto the Father, but by me (John 14:6).” Jesus is the Lamb of God who was made a living sacrifice to take upon Himself the sins of the world. Heb 9:28 says, “So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” This was the plan God had put in place to redeem mankind from their sins and to reconcile mankind to Himself. Jesus was prophesied of by the Prophets of old, was born of the virgin Mary by immaculate conception, He was crucified at Calvary and on the third day he rose and he later returned to sit on the right hand of the Father. This really is the Gospel, the Good News of salvation, the reason for every Christian to rejoice as he awaits the blessed hope of Jesus Chrst returning to claim the saints (the Church) to Himself!!

For God so love the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosover believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting Life (John 3:16)

But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Rom 5:8)

We had become as disobedient children, full of sin and all deceivableness, but in spite of this God loved us so much that He made a way for us to be saved, otherwise we would have been dead in our sins. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live (John 11:25).” Jesus came in order to establish the Kingdom of God on earth and all that we need to do to inherit this Kingdom is to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. In Christ’s Kingdom we surrender our lives to Him as His subjects, submitting to His governance, will and purpose as outlined in His Word and through the power of the Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit of God that enables us to believe in Christ Jesus and to repent of our sins and seek salvation in Him. When we come to faith in Christ therefore, we must be born again, born of water and of the Spirit (John 3:5). This is the “secret” to becoming a Christian.

Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labour for that which satisfieth not? hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness. Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David. (Isa 55:1-3)

Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. (Isa 55:6-7)

In spite of the provisions that God has made, freely given to us all without money and without price, however, there are those who still believe that God doesn’t really exist. But the scriptures say, “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God.” The Bible is not simply a story, a moral tale based in allegory. God truly does exist and His Word given to us in the form of the Bible is where we will learn of Him and find Life (John 5:39)! Moreover Jesus said, “The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life (John 6:63).” These very words are what is written in the Bible and handed down to us today. Christianity is therefore unlike any other religion. It is not a path among many to God but the ONLY path. In this respect God is not an idea created to establish social or moral norms, neither is God simply a “gnosis”. But God, the creator of Heaven and Earth is real, and He lives. Jesus came into the world to testify of Him and to become a Christian is to believe and have faith in Jesus Christ even without having seen.

Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed. (John 20:29)

Do you dare to believe in the Lord Jesus in order to receive salvation? For this is the way of the Christian

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Comments»

1. Marianne Lordi - January 12, 2010

My first time here. Your messages are powerful and so right on! Keep up the good work for the kingdom. God bless you as you continue to stand for truth.

2. Henry - January 12, 2010

Hi Marianne,

Welcome, and thanks for stopping by. Thanks for your words of encouragement.

3. joshua kent - January 14, 2010

We all need to expose the faithless and the spreading of a false doctrines that these wolves in sheeps clothing are telling people daily. Wolves like Benny Hinn, Creflo Dollar, Johh Hagee, Joel Osteen, Rick Warren, and the like.

“Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.” romans 16:17

Good job with your site, please stop in on mine

“For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. ” Matthew 18:20

In Christ,

theBIBLICALdude

http://www.proverbs13thirteen.com

4. Henry - January 14, 2010

Hi Joshua,
Thanks for stopping by. Indeed we all have a responsibility to contend earnestly for the faith. I have glanced at your site but will look at it in more detail.
God Bless

5. joshua kent - January 20, 2010

Always good to find a friend in the Lord.
Joshua


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