Defining a Christian in today’s world: Is it just a label or still a profession of faith?
It seems that more and more people are asking for a true definition of a Christian.
Recent surveys convey that a vast majority of people profess a belief in God and regularly pray to Him, but have a myriad of different understandings and practices associated with their faith. As a result, there are many definitions behind the word “Christian.”
Can a Christian be adequately defined as a person who follows Christ and His teachings? Perhaps a Christian is one who follows the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule, or simply being a good citizen by loving their neighbor and their country.
Due to the misnomer, misapplications, and frankly, the lousy examples from those who profess a faith in Christ, I’m sometimes reluctant to be even identified as a Christian — because in reality, the term is just a label.
What is my definition of a Christian? A soul that is already perfect in Christ
It’s now how I choose to live on this earth, but entirely dependent upon my status in where I will spend eternity. A person’s eternal status is the most crucial element in defining faith that goes far beyond a label.
One who is already perfect in Christ (i.e. Christian) has placed their entire trust in God’s promises that faith alone receives the full benefit of Christ’s completed work on the cross. Since Jesus substituted himself on the cross for us, we are declared perfect (justified) and forgiven (redeemed) in God’s sight. Why is that important? For that is the only way for us to return to how God originally created mankind to be (heaven).
Recent surveys have also pointed to a growing doubt that the Bible is a reliable source of truth. Is it inspired? Is it inerrant? The Bible is very clear in pointing to itself as the absolute truth and the only source to knowing how to be right with God. It points to its Word as the only means in providing all that we need to know for salvation.
For these reasons, the Bible goes to great length to prove its reliability by pointing to all the promises that God kept in the Old Testament and how it was fulfilled in Christ. And, how God established a new covenant so all people may have a right relationship with Him through Christ.
The Bible becomes the source to convey truth that has an eternal impact on every soul. It’s so important, that God inspired men to record this message and be miraculously preserved throughout generations. This is important for two reasons.
- That we can fully trust God’s promises contained in His Word.
- It is the power of God’s Word that we can trust Him.
The message of the Bible is simply to take God at His Word for life and salvation.
One’s status before God is what defines His faith, not adhering to a particular label.
What is your definition of a Christian?