Qualities of a True Christian
What are the marks of a true Christian? What are the characteristics of a true believer?
First of all it’s important to note that a person becomes a born again Christian simply by genuinely putting his/her trust in Jesus Christ as Lord & Saviour (John 3:16, John 1:12). Salvation & eternal life is a free gift of God through Christ (Romans 6:23). We are saved by grace and not by our own merit or works (Ephesians 2:8) and Jesus is the only way by whom we can be reconciled to God and have eternal life (John 14:6).
Therefore we do not become Christians / saved / born again as a result of our own works or personal merit but we become Christians by the grace of God through placing our faith in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:26).
When we become Christians we must allow the Holy Spirit to gradually work in us and to change our lives, our thoughts, our desires, our goals so that our lives are more Christ-centred instead of being self-centred. Therefore Christ increases in our lives whilst we decrease (John 3:30).
Galatians 2:20 says “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”
It’s important to note that Christians are not perfect. Christians make mistakes. However, Jesus said that true genuine Christians will be recognized by their fruits (Matthew 7:20) and that not everyone who says “Lord, Lord” will enter the kingdom of Heaven (Matthew 7:21)
As we genuinely grow in Christ we become distinguished from those who are of the world; we become distinguished from the hypocrites & pretenders; as the sheep we are distinguished from the goats; as the wheat we are distinguished from the tares.
BELOW ARE THE CHARACTERISTICS OF A TRUE BORN AGAIN CHRISTIAN
(1) A True Christian is Saved by Grace Through Faith In Jesus Christ & Not By Personal Merit or By Works (Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.)
We are not saved by keeping the law or by our own works. We are saved because of the work of Jesus Christ on the cross who paid for all our sins. Salvation is therefore by Jesus Christ alone and a Christian must realize that his/her salvation is a free gift. When a person believes that they can be saved because of their personal merit without Christ or by keeping the law, they are in error. Salvation is a free gift for the Christian and through Christ alone. (Galatians 2:21 – I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain).
(2) A True Christian Imitates God – (Ephesians 5:1 – Therefore be imitators of God as dear children). People in the world love role models. Some look to Hollywood for role models; some look to sportsmen for role models. But the Christian’s role model is Jesus. When Jesus came to earth, He not only came to die for us, but He also came to set an example through His life on earth and through His teachings as to how we should practically live a life that is pleasing to God. Therefore the life that Jesus lived is the life that we should follow and imitate.
(3) A True Christian Obeys The Lord – (John 14:15 – “If you love Me, keep My commandments”). Obedience to the will and word of God is important in the life of a true Christian. Jesus said that our love of Him is proved if when we obey Him. Therefore God desires our obedience to His word. We cannot say we love God but yet follow values and philosophies that are contrary to His word. (Luke 6:46 – “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say?”)
(4) A True Christian Does Not Conform To The World’s Standards – (Romans 12:2 – And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God). The world has its own values; its own systems; and its own priorities that are totally contrary to the values and laws of God. The Lord expects our values as Christians to align with God’s ways and teachings. When we become friends with the world and allow the values and philosophies of the world to influence our decisions, our lifestyle and our character, then the scriptures say that we automatically become enemies of God (James 4:4-5 – Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God). A true Christian is therefore a friend of God and not a friend of the world.
(5) A True Christian Exercises Power Over The Enemy – (Mark 16:17-18 – And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover). God has given every believer the authority and power to overcome the world and the enemy. With the position and title of being a child of God, comes the authority to exercise the power that God has given you. Therefore as a Christian, you have the power and authority to pray for the sick; to cast out demons; and to exercise the gifts of the Holy Spirit. It is not just for the pastor or the prophet or the religious leader to exercise authority – but God has given every person who is a born again believer the authority to exercise the power of God in his/her life for the glory of God.
(6) A True Christian Walks In Love – (1 Corinthians 13:1-3 – Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing). When God sent His begotten Son Jesus to die for our sins it was our of one motivation – His LOVE for us. God is motivated by love, because God is love. (1 John 4:7-11 – Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another).
(7) A True Christian Bears Good Fruit – (Matthew 7:18-20 – A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them). A true Christian will not live like a hypocrite; The Pharisees for example, were hypocrites because they did not walk the talk; they did not practice the law that they professed to believe in. A true Christian will display the values and character of God in word and deed. (Galatians 5:22-25 – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit).
(8) A True Christian Glorifies Jesus Christ – (Colossians 3:23-25 – And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ). A Christian does not live for his church; he does not live for his pastor and he no longer lives for himself. However, a Christian lives for Jesus Christ because Jesus is Lord over his/her life. Therefore the life of a Christian should not be to impress men, but the life of a Christian should aim to please God – even if it means being persecuted for living for God. The Pharisees & hypocrites for example, were more focused on being glorified and adored by men rather than focusing on glorifying God (read Matthew 6:1-4). Therefore our words and our deeds must speak of the goodness and love of God so that only God is glorified because God will not share His glory with anyone (read Isaiah 42:8).
BE DOERS OF THE WORD
In summary, a true born again Christian is not just a person who attends church regularly and participates in various church related activities. Christianity is a daily lifestyle by which one lives for Christ Jesus and lives to glorify the Lord. Christianity is lifestyle of obedience where the true born again believer is an obedient doer of the word and not simply just a hearer.
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.
DO YOU WANT TO BE SAVED / BECOME A CHILD OF GOD & A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???
As mentioned above, salvation is a FREE GIFT and salvation is not received by works but it is received by FAITH in Jesus Christ. It is that simple. A person must repent & by faith accept Jesus Christ as Lord & Saviour because Jesus is the only way, the truth & the life and the only Mediator between God & man.
1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17.
For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted – this means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments.
Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.
2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.
3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.
4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God
Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?
We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.
PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.
“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have eternal life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and broken your laws and commandments. Today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and I’ve decided to follow You. Thank You for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me a new creation in Christ.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”
Have you, by faith, received & accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord & Savior because of what you have read here? If so, please let us know by clicking on the “I have accepted Jesus Christ today” button below so that we may explain this wonderful decision you have made & steps you can make to grow in the Lord.