Being born into a Christian family doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Ticking the “Christian” checkbox on a form doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Getting baptised doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Going to Church every Sunday doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Tithing and giving doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Reading and studying the Bible doesn’t mean you are a Christian (even unbelieving scholars do this!).
Attending weekly Bible studies (home group/life group/youth group) doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Serving in one or more Church ministry doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Going on mission trips doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Acting or behaving like a Christian doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Saying Christian things or throwing Christian jargon around doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Saying that you believe in God doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Feeling spiritual doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Being a “good person”, doing “good things” and “treating others right” doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Believing Jesus was a good teacher who taught great things and lived a remarkable life doesn’t mean you’re a Christian.
Calling yourself a Christian isn’t the same as being the Christian God has called/saved you to be!
Who then, is a real Christian?
Let’s hear from the Lord Jesus Himself. It’s only fair that we rely on His words alone, being that He is THE standard by which anyone who claims to be a Christian, will be measured!
In Matthew 7:21-23, Jesus speaks these chilling words:
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
John 6:40 says this about the will of God the Father.
And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.
There you have it folks. If we don’t believe in Jesus and He doesn’t know us, we are not real Christians, let alone heaven bound.
What does it mean to be known by Jesus?
A number of things (not everything) I listed earlier in this post, is not evil or wrong in itself. In fact, those are things that a genuine Christian ought to be/do. Why? We ought to be this way because of the love the Lord has for us and the gratefulness we ought to have in return for the Lord, for all that He has done for us!
1 John 4:19 says
We love Him because He first loved us.
Love is the greatest evidence that a person is a genuine Jesus follower!
1 Corinthians 13, the love passage, highlights this truth. If we do everything else but have not love, we are nothing!
All that we are/do, should be a reflection of the love in our hearts, not the kind of love that the world knows or exhibits, but the love that is from Jesus/God, the love that is manifested in our lives through the working of the Holy Spirit!
Galatians 5:22-23 tells us this
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
It is the Holy Spirit that works in us changes us from the inside!
In 1 Samuel 16:7, the LORD has this interaction with Samuel the Prophet when He sends him to anoint David as king of Israel.
But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
It’s clear that God judges us based on what’s in our heart, not what we are on the outside.
True faith in and love for Jesus Christ starts and grows in the heart, through the working of the Holy Spirit. The fruits of this relationship is reflected in what we say and do, again, because of the Holy Spirit. Without God, there is nothing good about us or in us. Without Christ, we are nothing.
Christ cannot know us or build a relationship with us through the Holy Spirit, if we are too proud and arrogant and keep believing that what we say or do is what makes us a good Christian, not the finished work of Christ on the cross!
We don’t do all of the things I listed above to impress Christ/God/other Christians/the world or earn Heaven, we do it because of His great love for us and our deep desire to reciprocate that love, to show Him our thanks and gratitude!
We need to humble ourselves before Christ, accepting, acknowledging, confessing that He has done everything necessary to save us once and for all, that indeed, “It is finished!” (John 19:30).
The Holy Spirit is always ready to work in us, if we submit to Him and humble ourselves. Everything the LORD allows/enables us to do and does through us, is a privilege and blessing. It is not because of how great/talented/faithful/wonderful we are, it is because He loves us that much and wants to use us for His Kingdom purposes.
Everything is by Jesus. Everything is because of Jesus. Everything is through Jesus.
If He doesn’t know you, does anything you say or do here on Earth, no matter how good/wonderful/positive/amazing it is, mean anything?
I don’t care who you are or what you serve as where you serve at, if you don’t inwardly as well as outwardly attribute all that you are/do to the grace of God the Father, to the finished work of God the Son Jesus and the indwelling of God the Holy Spirit, the result of His love for you, then you’ve got a heart problem and it’s a big problem!
1 John 1:8-9 says this
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
What about you? Do you go around thinking you are a great Christian and/or a heaven bound Christian because of you or because of Jesus and Him alone and the Holy Spirit working in and through you?
It is very easy for us to deceive ourselves.
If this is how you’ve been going about your Christian walk and the Holy Spirit has convicted you of this, don’t let your pride and/or the lies of the enemy, stop you from getting right with God.
I encourage you to read Philippians 2:1-12, where we can learn how we ought to carry ourselves, from the example that Christ Himself set for us.
Let us ask the Holy Spirit to help us be the Christians that God the Father wants us to be, so that we can be salt and light in the world and point/lead those who don’t yet believe, to Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour!
God bless you all.Thank Sri 🙂