There are two things that make someone a Christian. The first is that you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins and rose from the dead; and second is that you have been born again by the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus said that “you must be born again” in order to see the Kingdom of God. You cannot be a Christian unless you are born again, in the same way that you cannot be a human being unless you have a body.
It is not enough simply to go to church, or read your Bible, or say that you are a Christian; you can say those things and still not go to heaven. Saying that you believe in Jesus doesn’t make you a Christian;
God says: “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me” (Matthew 15:8).
Reading your Bible doesn’t make you a Christian;
Jesus says: “You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me!” – John 5:39
In order to be a Christian you have to have the Holy Spirit living inside of you. Saying it is not enough, you have to believe it in your heart – and you need the Holy Spirit inside of you. And you can only get the Holy Spirit inside of you if you pray and ask God to be your Lord and Saviour. God wants your heart; He wants you believe in Him: God wants you believe in Him with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and all your strength – and He wants you to love your neighbour as you love yourself. God want to be your friend and have a personal relationship with you. He wants to know you by name; to hear you speak to Him; to talk to you; to answer your prayers and to bless you with His presence.
The Bible says that “Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honour God with your body” – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20.
We are to worship God with our bodies. That doesn’t mean that we are to only sing songs of praise to God and pray to Him; we are to use our hands, feet, mouths and all we have to serve the Lord. To worship God means to serve Him.
To worship God means to take care of orphans
Some people worship idols. They bow before them, or walk around them, and offer things to their idols. Some people think that rocks, or stones, or statues, or idols or buildings have special powers. But they don’t.
“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you” (James 1:27).
True religion is seen by the love you show to other people. Forgiving others if they want to pick a fight with you; being kind to your mother and father or relatives even if they reject you because you are a Christian. True religion is asking God to reveal Jesus Christ to others; to allow yourself to be used by God to reach others for Christ.
Others should see that you a Christian by the way you act; the way you talk, the way you treat your family, the way you act at work, the way you talk to people in the store. People should know you are a Christian without you ever having to say that you are a Christian.
James says: “So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.
Now someone may argue, “Some people have faith; others have good deeds.” But I say,
“How can you show me your faith if you don’t have good deeds? I will show you my faith by my good deeds.”
You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror. How foolish! Can’t you see that faith without good deeds is useless?
Don’t you remember that our ancestor Abraham was shown to be right with God by his actions when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see, his faith and his actions worked together. His actions made his faith complete. And so it happened just as the Scriptures say: “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.” He was even called the friend of God. So you see, we are shown to be right with God by what we do, not by faith alone.
Rahab the prostitute is another example. She was shown to be right with God by her actions when she hid those messengers and sent them safely away by a different road. Just as the body is dead without breath, so also faith is dead without good works.
So live your life for God using all the you have, remember: “You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.’ And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.”