Christian Universe ™
Christian - A Follower Of Christ
April 07, 2013
Many claim to be Christians. A Christian is a follower of Christ. To be a Christian, one must actually follow Christ! Just declaring oneself to be a Christian does not make one so!
Christian: A Follower Of Christ
by Bernie Parsons
Presented to Load church of Christ on 04-07-2013
Presented to Globe church of Christ on 04-14-2013
I have long pondered the concept of “Christian”. The only times that we encounter any form of the word in the Bible are in the following passages:
Acts 11:25 "Then departed Barnabas to Tarsus, for to seek Saul:
26 And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch."
Acts 26:28 "Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian."
1 Peter 4:16 "Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf."
The word “Christian” is from the Greek, Christianos, (phonetic spelling: khris-tee-an-os'), and it simply means “follower of Christ.”
There are many who consider themselves Christians merely because they accept the concept of Jesus as the savior, or Christ. But, does that make a person a follower of Christ – a Christian?
Matthew 22:14 "For many are called, but few are chosen."
Matthew 7:13 "Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."
Not everyone will enter into eternal life. Who will? Only those who truly follow Christ.
Ephesians 5:1 "Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children;
2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour."
We are not to follow men, unless they follow the teachings of God and Christ Jesus.
Acts 5:29 "Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men."
1 Corinthians 11:1 "Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ."
1 Corinthians 4:17 "For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach every where in every church."
1 Thessalonians 1:5 "For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.
6 And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost:
7 So that ye were ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia."
We follow Christ, and godly men who follow Christ, and we become examples. Our righteous lives light the way for those who are thinking about Christ, and what He means to them.
1 Peter 3:12 "For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.
13 And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good?
14 But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;
15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:"
We are those who seek the righteousness of God. God hears our prayers. Normally, others will admire our righteousness. However, some of us may suffer for righteousness’ sake. That presents an opportunity to explain our faith in Christ Jesus, our Lord.
Ephesians 2:10 "For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them."
Ephesians 5:8 "For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)
10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord."
We are to walk as those who are illuminated by the righteousness of God. We are living proof of righteousness, for we do that which the Lord would have us do.
Ephesians 5:14 "Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.
15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,
16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.
17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is."
Colossians 1:9 "For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;
10 That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;"
We know ourselves, and others who walk righteously, by the fruitful
1 John 2:3 "And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.
4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5 But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
6 He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked."
We prove that we are in God, and in Christ, when we keep His commandments.
John 10:25 "Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me.
26 But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.
27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
29 My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand."
It is not enough to profess Christ as savior, but we must do as He says. If we do not walk in Him, we are not His. If we are not walking in His footsteps, we are not followers of Christ.
Matthew 7:21 "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven
22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works
23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock
25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock
26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand
27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it."
To be Christians, we must not only listen to the words of Jesus – we must follow Him, walk in His footsteps, and live daily by those words. Just declaring ourselves Christians does not make us so.