Belonging to Christ is serious business

Published 8:43 am Thursday, April 1, 2021

From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Dear Rev. Graham: There are many who identify as Christians but what defines a Christian? — T.C.

Dear T.C.: Those who have truly committed their lives to Jesus understand fully what Christ has done for them. They accept His work of redeeming them and submit to Him in complete trust. The word “Christian” actually means “a partisan for Christ.” In our political culture the word “partisan” is a word that is understandable. It means to take sides. It means we are committed to something or someone. Partisans are not neutral. So this is a wonderful way to describe who and what a Christian is — they are on God’s side!
There are people who have a wrong idea about what makes up a Christian. Some say, “A Christian is a person who prays,” or, “A Christian lives by the Golden Rule.” But praying or living by the Golden Rule, or being sincere, doesn’t make a Christian.
Belonging to Christ is serious business! It means to obey the Gospel and accept Christ as personal Savior. It means to deny worldly pleasures and seek to please God in all things. It means to follow Jesus faithfully and joyfully. When Christians falter — and we do — we confess our sin to the Lord and ask Him to forgive us and strengthen us.
The Christian life is to be lived on the highest plane by the power of Christ and he or she must continually be growing and moving forward. We should grow closer to God day by day as we strive to live as a shining light in a godless society and stand up for that which is right, just, and honorable. “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)

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