What is a real Christian?
You become a real Christian through a work of God the Holy Spirit in your heart.
Firstly, you make a conscious choice to turn from your sins – that is what is meant by repentance: “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.” Isaiah 55:7 (see Ephesians 2:1-10; Acts 20:21).
Secondly, to become a real Christian you must trust in Jesus Christ alone as your Saviour: trust in who he is and trust in what he did on the cross. Faith is putting your trust in Jesus Christ, believing that he is the Son of God, who paid the penalty of your sins on Calvary’s cross by his blood, to save you from your rightful judgement in hell. And it is believing that he was buried, and was raised to life on the third day, to show that it is true (see Ephesians 2:1-10; 1 Peter 1:18-21).
When you repent of your sins and trust in Christ alone you receive new life by the Spirit of God; you are saved from God’s judgement and born again by the Spirit of God.
Thought: Are you born again? Have you become a follower of Christ?
The Philippian jailer said “what must I do to be saved?” And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved” Acts 16:31.
How do I know if I am a real Christian?
God wants you to know the joy and peace that comes from being saved through faith in Jesus Christ. But how do you know if you are saved and born again? How do you know if you are a real Christian?
The scriptures says there will be evidence if you are a real Christian. There will be evidence that your life has been changed by God. How do you know if a plant is alive? You see fruit and that’s proof of life! How do you know a car engine is working? You listen and examine how it drives!
How do you know you have spiritual life, that you are born again by God’s Spirit? You will see the following evidence in your life:
1) You will be trusting in Christ’s work on the cross alone and God’s promises of forgiveness, and not relying on your own good efforts, religious ceremonies you have gone through, what other people say, or even your ‘good’ feelings (see 2 Timothy 3:15).
2) You will be deeply ashamed of your sins because they offend God and will have a repentant heart that turns away from sin (see Psalm 51). Are you saved? Is Jesus Christ your Lord? (If not, find a quiet place and in simple trust in God’s promises in the Bible, ask God to forgive you. Tell him about the sins you are turning from. Thank him for dying on the cross. Ask him to be your Saviour and Lord).
3) You will have a desire to talk to God (pray) and a hunger to feed on his Word, the scriptures (see Acts 2:42).
4) You will want to follow and obey the Lord Jesus Christ out of love for him (see Acts 2:46-47). By God’s power you will become a new person. “no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 12:3.
5) You will have the peace of God, by his Spirit (see Acts 2:41-47). Feelings may come and go but our trust is in the Lord (see Psalm 32).
“if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
Thought: Is there evidence in your life that you are a real Christian?
Statement of Faith
What is a church?
‘What is a Church?’ – a publication by Christ The Word, Wixams, that describes a church’s definition, purpose, motivation, leadership, membership, and the importance of beliefs (PDF 675k).