“Call Yourself A Christian?”

Posted: January 24, 2015 in Bible Study, Christian Life, Church

In the United States it used to be popular to identify yourself as a Christian. Many politicians, to gain votes, would attend church and participate in various activities there to try to impress people. But these days it’s more politically correct to be “tolerant” of all religions as being equally valid and refer to them as being one of many ways to God. (See John 14:6; Acts 4:12) We hear people calling themselves “followers of Jesus.” This term can be very confusing. There were many such people who followed Jesus as His disciples who weren’t even saved. They followed Him because He filled their stomachs with bread and healed the sick and raised the dead. But when He told them about their spiritual needs they forsook Him (John 6:66).

Carnal. Contrary to what some Christians are being taught, Christians can be carnal.* They didn’t get rid of their sin nature when they got saved. They added to themselves a new nature from God (2 Peter 1:4). Those who say that they no longer have a sin nature are simply deceiving themselves and denying God’s Word (1 John 1:8). The Apostle Paul referred to some of the Corinthians believers as carnal (1 Corinthians 3:1-4). He even referred to himself as continually being dominated by his sin nature in the early stages of his Christian life (Romans 7:15-25). But he eventually learned the secret of walking by the Spirit (Galatians 5:16-25) so that he began to yield to the lusts from it less frequently. Christians don’t have to sin, but we will periodically (1 John 2:1). We have been given everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3). We believe in the sufficiency of the Scriptures (2 Timothy 3:16, 17). We don’t need the philosophies and wisdom of unsaved men to grow spiritually (Colossians 2:8; James 3:15). When we sin, we should quickly confess our sins to God (1 John 1:9) and claim His forgiveness rather than mope around and wonder if God has forgiven us or not. Yes, the “governmental consequences” of our sins might follow us for the rest of our lives, but our fellowship with the Father can be restored when we walk in the light as He is in the light (1 John 1:7). Are you struggling with the temptations that come from your sin nature? Read 1 Corinthians 10:13. Apply Romans 6:11-14 to your life. Be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18) and walk by means of the Spirit and you won’t fulfill the lusts (strong desires) of the flesh (Galatians 5:16, 19-21).

Convenient. I can almost hear my father’s words ringing in my ears. He’d say to me, “Son, you’ll come across a lot of ‘Convenient Christians’ in life.” Others refer to them as “Round Tuit Christians.”** You might hear them saying such things as, “I’ll get started in church just as soon as I can get a round tuit.” Or, I should come to Bible study but I never seem to get a round tuit.” Or, “I know that I would benefit from daily devotions but I never get a round tuit.” Or, “I want to tithe on my income but I never get a round tuit.” What’s your excuse? Why do you forsake the assembly meetings of the church (Hebrews 10:24, 25)? Your presence in church is needed both for you to grow spiritually as a Christian (2 Peter 3:18), and for you to edify others in the faith (1 Thessalonians 5:11). Attend church both to be blessed and to bless and comfort others (2 Corinthians 1:3, 4).

Committed. Every true Christian*** who has placed his faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as personal Savior should be baptized (immersed) to be obedient to the Lord’s command (Matthew 28:19, 20), to have a good conscience (1 Peter 3:21), and to let others know that he is a Christian (Acts 8:38). If not at the point of salvation, a Christian should also present his body to God as a living sacrifice as soon as possible after he is saved (Romans 12:1,2; 1 Peter 3:15). We don’t believe the Scriptures teach “Lordship For Salvation.”****

Question. Are you a Christian? If so, are you a “Carnal Christian” who needs to confess your sins and get back into fellowship with God? Are you a “Convenient Christian” who needs to stop loving the world system? Yes, we must use it, but we are not to abuse it (1 Corinthians 7:31). Or are you a “Committed Christian” who is making progress toward spiritual maturity (Romans 8:14; Philippians 3:10; 2 Peter 3:18)?

Help. If you have questions/comments, we can be reached at 805-238-3549. We also have other helpful information at www.kelseypeach.com and invite you to visit our website. If this article has helped you, we’d like to hear from you. We appreciate your telling others about this site that is designed to glorify God by letting others know about God through the salvation of the lost, the edification of believers, the equipping Christians for their work of ministry, and the reproduction of other Christians. Click on “Follow” if you’d like to receive future articles as they come out.

*Carnal Christians

http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/doctrine/1natjm00.htm

**Secure a “Round Tuit” button at http://tractleague.com/tracts/round-tuit/.

***Clear Gospel http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

****Lordship For Salvation http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/salvatio/lordshrq.pdf

 

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