What defines a Christian?
The simple and Biblical definition of a Christian is a follower of Christ. The Greek word for Christian, (Christianos) is used three times in the Bible (Acts 11:26, Acts 26:28, 1 Peter 4:16). Many people consider themselves Christian and believe in Jesus, but they do not follow His teachings.
What are the characteristics of a true Christian?
A. They should be saved.
1. One needs to acknowledge that they are a sinner as Romans 3:23 states that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
2. Know that our sin is punishable by death, but God provides a gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Romans 6:23
3. Romans 5:8 states that Jesus Christ has died to atone for our sins. He alone has paid our debt and we are not worthy of God’s grace by our own works. Ephesians 2:8-9
4. Confess with our mouths that Jesus Christ is Lord. Romans 10:9, 10:13
B. They should agree to our statement of faith
C. They should exhibit a changed life
1. Agreeing with as revealed in scripture on what defines sin and righteousness.
2. 2 Corinthians 5:17 states that a believer is a new creature and that their old habits have passed away.
3. According to Colossians 1:10, a Christian should strive to live a life worthy of the Lord and to please Him in every way bearing fruit in every good work and growing in the knowledge of God.
D. They should have a strong faith
1. Hebrews 11:1 states that “faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see”
2. Faithfulness is one of the fruits of the spirit mentioned in Galatians 5:22
E. They should readily share the gospel
1. In Mark 16:15 Jesus commands us to Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.
2. We are to defend our faith as well. 1 Peter 3:15 “but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,”
F. They should disciple others
1. Jesus commands it in Matthew 28:19 “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”
2. We must reach the world for Christ! Acts 1:8 says “but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.”