Who is a Christian? What does it mean to became a Christian? Are we different from other people when we become Christians?
A “religious” group may try to convince you to commit yourself to them. You may ask yourself if their intention is for your benefit or for their benefit! Is it a control issue? Are the people involved convinced about it or are they just doing what their church requires them to do? Is there a hidden agenda like a monetary benefit?
These and other questions may pop up in your mind when you think of becoming a committed Christian through a church or group. Some groups’ main agenda is money!
Isaiah 55:1 (NIV) “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.
Prophet Isaiah was speaking about what is happening in this generation. Guilting to give! Guilting is from the devil. The Holy Spirit convicts! There is a difference. Conviction brings joy. Guilting brings pain, sorrow and bondage! We are guilted into thinking that salvation costs us money. Salvation is free. The price was paid on the cross.
I will advice that you make a personal decision about committing yourself to God and not to a group in order to please another human being!
I was born into a catholic Christian family. We went to church and as children attended Sunday School which was fun. When I became an adolescent, church became a social place to meet friends. There was nothing in me that ‘screamed’ Christian! You could not mistake me for anything special. Which means that I was an ordinary bloke! I didn’t feel any different either. Whatever others did, I did! Whatever others drunk, I could drink too! Whatever others smoked, I could smoke too if I wanted to!
Then on my own and many years later, I went through a spiritual experience that made me understand what it is to become a Christian.
Being a committed Christian is a very personal thing. Christianity involves the healing of the soul and NOT the gospel of prosperity that is peddled in every street corner! You will know that you have the real deal when your soul gets rest and quietness! Isaiah 30:15 (NIV) …In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength…
Salvation is not an advertising or promotional tool for personal gain or edification!
Several times in the bible, Jesus told the people who were healed not to tell anyone. Matthew 8:8 (GNT) Then Jesus said to him, “Listen! Don’t tell anyone,… There was a woman who had a bleeding issue for many years and when she came to Jesus, He didn’t embarrass her by parading her problem before people, instead He told her that her faith has healed her! Why did Jesus go about His business this way? He knew that the experiences were personal. The experience was for the benefit of the receiver and not for the onlookers or for the one being used to give it.
Is it the same today from those calling themselves servants of God? Is the repentance of a sinner a personal matter? Is a miraculous event of repentance or healing personal? Not really, it is packaged for broadcasting to the whole world for personal promotion or financial benefit!
Though it is important to take advantage of what is lit up in you or others to reach the world, be careful not to try and use it to make a name for yourself or worse still, make a monetary gain out of it!
When there is a genuine spiritual change in a person or a region nobody is able to hide it. It will light like a lamp in the darkness! Matthew 5:14 (NIV) “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.
I have compiled the following thoughts in an attempt to engage you and possibly help you discover yourself and make a personal commitment to the Creator !
Our universe is a marvel from every angle. Think of the big and expanding distances between galaxies, the tiny vibrating energies that make an atom and the complex and unique DNA instructions code that are responsible for the formation (creation) and multiplication of every living organism on earth.
Genesis 2:1 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.
If you put your thoughts into it, you will in no doubt conclude that some very high intelligence is behind the formation of the universe. Scientific arguments have proved that our limited brains cannot comprehend how it all started but we can tell to some extend how it works. We are perplexed at our understanding of the beautiful order of God’s creation but like fools we may still say in our hearts ‘there is no God’.
Psalm 14:1 … The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” …
Then God placed man in a paradise that he created on planet earth called Eden. This place was good and the love of God was all over because His presence was there.
When man sinned and was banished from the Garden of Eden, he was separated from the presence of God, so he lost the warmth of the unconditional love he had with the Creator. His one time paradise on earth has become a dunghill. It’s like a pigsty but man is too proud and rebellious to see it. Whereas God’s love for us didn’t change, we blocked ourselves from His presence by our sins. We inherited a stubbornness towards God from Adam. This stubbornness irks our loving God. Imagine how frustrated you will feel if your own kid can’t trust you to solve their problems. The human stubbornness drove God to let us provide for our own bodies! It is clear in the scriptures that He had not intended it to be that way! Every living thing on earth was made to sustain us but now we have to work for it! We think it is normal, but it was not normal! Look at the birds and other animals with bodies like us. Do they struggle for provision like us? Genesis 3:19 Says that humans will eat from the fruits of their own sweat until the day they die!
Due to this stubbornness, our spiritual self was also left with a big void for unconditional love. It is like losing a loving mother.
I marvel at what couples say when they fall for each other’s goodness. I have heard many say that they have found true love. A few days, months or years later the relationship grows cold and they are up and about again looking for love. Which means it wasn’t love. Love is from God. If two people who have found love from God find each other, they both have an inexhaustible supply of a love stream for their partners. It will never run dry. This type of a couple have found love.
Man is a spirit in a body. This spiritual side is hungry to be filled with unadulterated love. The love we lost in the garden of Eden! Our soul is still grappling with this fact. We eagerly scan our environment, trying to find love, pure, unconditional and non – judgmental love.
We may try and fail miserably to replace love with sexual acts, a spouse, wealth, education, ancestral culture or strict religious practices. Neither sexual relationship, practicing religion, practicing inherited culture, practicing religious rituals, or believing in counterfeit alternatives to heaven through other ways other than through the Lord Jesus Christ will ever fill this void (John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me“).
All these activities keep you busy thereby blinding you from the truth, then tying you to unnecessary yokes that will eventually destroy you. Jesus said in Mathew 11:25 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
You are a potential child of God as a non believer in Jesus Christ. It’s God’s will that you live as long as you can hoping that at some point in your life, you will give yourself to Him. If any religious group or religion advocates killing of a non-believer, then the message from that group or religion is not from God but from the devil! Groups have killed in the name of Christianity! Be assured that this was from hell!
The spiritual hunger for love is so strong that it has driven our bodies to be addicted to ‘wanting’ things. Unfortunately feeding our bodily lusts (wealth, drugs, sex etc ) will never replace the unconditional love of God. This love cannot be accessed intellectually or by some magic. This love was earned for us by the death of Jesus Christ on the cross. It doesn’t matter your previous background. God requires of us to ditch all other gods or idols for Him. We have to stop listening to other gods. We need to dismantle our current dependence structures. Jesus wants to save us from our cultures, religions and from our self-righteousness.
Most medieval cultures sacrificed animals or humans to evil spirits to appease them. In other words they were bribing the devil and his demons. If there was a calamity from these evil characters, it stopped and that is why these practices were carried over to the next generations. This was a recurring phenomenon with many animals and people dying. Since the devil and his evil spirits don’t give a hoot about the well-being of human beings, calamities still came back and wiped big populations of people!
The Jews also had their own way that was given to them by God long before the crucifixion of Jesus Christ! In order to understand the meaning of the cross, detailed procedures were recorded in the Old Testament Bible for our benefit. This is especially so if you don’t have a cultural background to relate to on dealing with sins and curses.
Jesus was made a sacrificial lamb on the cross to redeem us from our Sins
In the old testament (Read Leviticus 4 , 5, onward), we see Moses clearly outlining the law given by God on the area of sacrificing animals as sin offering. Each sin had a specific animal sacrifice for it. There was an outline of how, who, what and where to do it.
This became the Hebrew way of dealing with sins and acts of worship.
John 4 19-26 “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshipped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshippers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshippers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshippers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.” Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he.”
When Jesus in a human body was nailed on the cross, he became a sacrificial lamb for all our sins once and for all. This effectively redeemed us from our current empty ways of life as Jews or gentiles.
1 Peter 1:18-19 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life you inherited from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or spot.
We don’t need any of our cultures or some religious rituals to be free from sins but acknowledge that Jesus was sacrificed on the cross as a lamb without a defect for all our sins. This is even symbolised in Numbers 21:8 Then the LORD told him, “Make a replica of a poisonous snake and attach it to a pole. All who are bitten will live if they simply look at it!”
It’s not hard theology, but we are guaranteed to live and not die from our sins when we accept the sacrifice on the cross for our redemption of sins.
Once our relationship with God is restored, God wants to walk again with us like He used to walk with Adam and Eve. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit want to dwell within us.
John 14: 23 Jesus replied, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make Our home with him….”
If what I have shared just sounds like science fiction, then you need to invite Jesus Christ into your life to start a fellowship with Him. In order to do this, you will need to break that rebellion and hostility towards God within you that you inherited from Adam through your ancestry.
Take time and reflect on your past life. See the scars and curses that you have gained from your current way of life.
You Can Make a New Beginning
Do you want to live for ever in the presence of God from now on ?
Please study the following prayer then say it from your heart and at the same time making a conscious decision to invite Jesus Christ in your life
God, I know that, in my lifetime, I have not always lived for You, and I have sinned in ways I probably don’t even know yet as sin. I know that You have plans for me, and I want to live in those plans. I pray to You for forgiveness for the ways in which I have sinned.
I am choosing now to accept You, Jesus, into my heart. I am eternally grateful for Your sacrifice on the cross and how You died so I can have eternal life. I pray that I will be filled with the Holy Spirit and that I continue to live as You desire for me to live. I will strive to overcome temptations and no longer let sin control me. I put myself, my life and my future in Your hands. I pray that You work in my life and guide my steps so that I continue to live for You for the rest of this life. In Your name, I pray. Amen.
Believe that you are now redeemed from your sins.
Please get hold of someone and tell them that you are now different, even if it’s a stranger in the street.
Start studying the Gospels. The Gospel of John is a good beginning.
You can join a good bible-based church.
The church must believe in salvation of humans through the work of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross and that Jesus came in the flesh, He became a sacrificial lamb for our sins and resurrected on the third day from the dead and He accented to heaven where He sits at the right hand side of God the Father interceding for us.
Genuine Christians believe in the redemption of humans from evil through the power of the Holy Spirit! They believe that evil is real and is a person or persons without a body who live in or among humans but under the command of the devil!
If the church you join does not believe fully on the above statement concerning our salvation or in the gift of the Holy Spirit to humans and they oppose the existence of unclean spirits living in people, then you are in the wrong place, find another church!
I would love to hear your experiences. Please write
[Article Author: Joseph GM]