“And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.” “That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. All Scripture says, “Anyone who trusts in Him will never be put to shame.” For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile – the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on Him, for, “Everyone who calls on the Name of the Lord will be saved.” – Rom. 8:9b & Rom. 10:9-13 (NIV) Who is a Christian?
Just knowing the Scriptures does not make someone a Christian and good deeds do not make one a Christian. The core of our Christian faith is accepting Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord. Being religious does not make us so and Jesus Himself says: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven but only he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven.” – Matthew 7:21 (NIV) To do God’s will means loving the Lord Jesus Christ and steadfastly obeying His commands. Again He says in Matt. 7:24 that those who hear Him and obey Him are wise – “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.”
How to be a Christian
Let us learn some very practical steps on How to be a Christian. Some of us may be wondering why we should learn such a topic since we have already dealt with Who is a Christian. God Himself has a way in which He wants us to relate to Him. He wants us to do this through Christ Jesus as we read in John 14:6 – “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Interestingly God through the Prophets Isaiah and Ezekiel pointed out His displeasure with mere religion. Isaiah 29:13b says “They honour me with their lips, but their hearts are far away. And their worship of me amounts to nothing more than human law learned by rote.” (NLT) That is however, not what the Lord wants and so in Ezekiel 36:26-27 He says: “I will give you a new heart with new and right desires, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony heart of sin and give you a new, obedient heart. And I will put my Spirit in you so you will obey my laws and do whatever I command.”(NLT)
So to be a Christian goes beyond:
- attending services
- avoiding immorality
- believing in God
- offering prayers
- celebrating religious events
- being in leadership positions in church
- giving to the poor; and
- reading scriptures
Source: Culled from SALM’s article in the Spectator newspaper.