So, you believe you are a Christian. But how can you know, for certain?
Upon what do you base your Christianity? Is it that you are a member of a particular church? Is it merely the fact that you have appropriated the name “Christian”–that you give this answer if asked to identify your religion? Perhaps you claim to be Christian because at times, you followed the teachings of the Bible.
Christianity is so much more than these or so many other superficial assertions! Jesus Christ was and is a Christian, and it is to Him that we must look to really know if we are following Him. His life and His way of living are recorded for our edification in the Word of God, the Holy Scriptures, and this is our source for learning about Jesus.
Many claim to be Christians! Many faithfully worship in church services on Sunday mornings, thinking they are doing exactly what Jesus wants them to do, but they are wrong! Many are trying to establish Christianity on this earth in order to solve its problems, but they will fail in this purpose! Others pick and choose some aspect of Biblical teachings, but hold back in total commitment to God! Followers of modern professing Christianity are simply deceived, and have no inkling of the fact that theirs is a false claim when they espouse the Christian religion.
Narrow the focus to yourself. Are you able to evaluate others and see their error? Can you open your Bible and prove what truth is? More importantly, can YOU be guided by the Word of God?
The Bible speaks of the end of the age. It describes a time of great deception: “‘For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect'” (Matthew 24:24). Most people are confident that this deception applies to someone else! Yet, Christ warns His Church not to become complacent (compare Revelation 3:14-22).
Paul puts it this way: “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12). He further challenges us with the admonition: “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?–unless you are disqualified [margin: do not stand the test]” (2 Corinthians 13:5).
So, how do you know you are a Christian? You examine and test YOURSELF in light of God’s Word, using the standard of Jesus Christ’s life as your guide! Jesus gave us this very specific key: “‘By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another'” (John 13:35). John adds: “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:2-3).
How do YOU KNOW you are a Christian?