Being a Christian does not mean you are a religious “meeting goer,” someone who goes to Christian meetings rather than to places of worldly entertainment, but otherwise is just like other people. Not at all! A Christian is someone who brings his life into complete harmony with the Word of God and His will. He is righteous where others are unrighteous; he is patient where others are impatient, diligent where others are lazy, and exact where others are inexact. He speaks the truth boldly where others flatter, play the hypocrite, and lie. He is meek, longsuffering, and quiet where others are hot tempered and impetuous, etc. (1 Peter 1:15) All these are traits of a true Christian.
Being a true Christian is that he is completely unselfish. It means that he starts thinking about the others’ needs, as God works it in his heart: what is good and practical for them and what would benefit them. Then, according to his ability, he helps them to obtain it. Christianity is synonymous with serving and giving of everything we have, both of spiritual and earthly goods. This is the essence of love. (Romans 15:2,7)
A Christian is somebody that is not being influenced by the spirit of the times. A large number of people in the world are living in sin. They follow their passions and desires and few think it is wrong. There is a spirit behind them, and this spirit is called “the spirit of the times .” It is particularly difficult to resist this spirit. What is commonly known as “fashion” is representative of this spirit.
An ungodly person can be likened to a lifeless marionette. Whenever one power or another pulls the strings, he has to jump and dance, whether he wants to or not. A Christian has Christ as his sole Lord and ruler. Then he does not obey other powers; he does not obey the fashions or the spirit of the times, even if everyone else does.
Being a Christian means that that person is righteous in all his affairs. Therefore if he has stolen anything or committed some other act of unrighteousness, he will make restitution as soon as he becomes a Christian. If he is in debt, he will make every effort to pay it back. There is no way around it. In this respect it does not help to appeal to the atonement. If he does not practice righteousness, he is not a Christian at all, and he will not enter the kingdom of God. “Everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him .” 1 John 2:29.
A Christian, because of his progressive victory over his own lust and desires, starts to enjoy perfect rest in his heart and mind. His life, being purified by the help of his Saviour, becomes more and more irreproachable and blameless. No one can any longer point the finger at manifest sin such as outbursts of anger, irritation or any unrighteousness.
As the Christian appreciates the power of the Holy Spirit in his life more and more, he naturally becomes stronger and stronger by the same Spirit. The Christian can endure trials, discomfort, good report and evil report. This he does as he is confident that he serves a faithful Master. What was impossible for him in the past, he is now able to overcome. This is especially noticed by those that are themselves in need of overcoming.
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