What does it mean to be a Christian?
The word Christian is used three times in the New Testament.
Followers of Jesus were first called Christians in Antioch because they were like Christ - speaking and behaving like him.
The word Christian literally means ‘belonging to Christ, or a follower of Christ’.
Throughout history, the word Christian has been thrown around very loosely, meaning something different to one person than it does to another.
Some people would say they are a Christian because they are a nice person who does good things and cares about others.
But does being a good person and following a bunch of rules really make you a christian?
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
- Romans 5:8
This scripture tells us that humans are sinners in desperate need of saving. And that Jesus is the one who died for us, even when we didn’t know or understand what this meant.
So how do you BECOME a Christian?
“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that everyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
- John 3:16
Here’s the thing:
No amount of rules that you could follow could you save you.
No amount of good deeds could save you.
This stuff means NOTHING if you do not believe in Jesus.
Because the bible says that it is through believing in Jesus, that you are saved and receive eternal life.
So what is our response to being saved by Jesus?
In Matthew 22:36-40 we see the Pharisees (that’s just a name for teachers of the Law), asked Jesus what the greatest commandment is.
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Firstly, our response is to LOVE GOD.
Secondly, our response is to LOVE OTHERS.
It is from the love we receive from God that we can love others.
I want to ask myself two things each day:
1. How am I loving God today?
2. How am I loving others
I want you to ask yourself the same things.
How are you loving God?
Are you spending time with Him in the Bible, are you praying? Are you spending time in worship?
How are you loving others? Are you being kind to them? Are you speaking encouragement over them? Are you showing them grace and love even if they don’t deserve it? Are you pointing them to Jesus?
In Matthew 28:16-20 we see Jesus with the 11 disciples after he was raised from the dead. He tells them this:
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 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, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Our salvation isn’t something we should keep to ourselves. Our response should be to share about Jesus with our friends, with our family, and with strangers.
One of the favourite scriptures is Matthew 5:13-16. It’s the scripture that She is Light is based off!
“Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage.
Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven."
This is our response to our salvation - to be salt bringing out the God-flavours of the earth, and to be light, bringing out the God-colours in the world.
I’ve created a FREE 5-day Bible study on what it means to be salt and light in the world, pointing others to Jesus. Enter your details below to join.
If this post helped you, comment below with a big YES! I’d love to hear your thoughts around how we can love God and love others each day. Comment and share them with me.