The Mark of a True Christian

Dear Christian, this blog is not meant to upset your assurance of salvation but to upset any false assurance you may be holding onto. If I must offend you into heaven, then so be it. Don’t be afraid to challenge your faith when your eternity depends on it.

Sometimes, failing the test is the lesson God was trying to teach you. “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test?” (2 Corinthians 13:5 NIV).

We have many who call themselves Christians but fewer who really are. Our churches are filled with people, but how many of them are really going to be in heaven? I pray that most will, but I fear that most will not. How is it that we can tell who the real Christians are?

Salvation is a free gift, but unless you receive it, then it doesn’t yet belong to you. “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23 ESV).

Salvation is in an instant and is never dependent on what we can do. By Christ alone are we saved. The thief on the cross next to Jesus never had a chance to live a changed life, but we do. And it will be in the changed life that we will find out if Jesus is truly the Lord over our life.

You can’t add two cents to your salvation but only thank Him for it. “You were saved by faith in God, who treats us much better than we deserve. This is God’s gift to you, and not anything you have done on your own. It isn’t something you have earned, so there is nothing you can brag about” (Ephesians 2:8-9 CEV).

There are marks of a true Christian that we can look for. Those attributes that we can expect to be formed in someone who is really walking with the Lord Jesus Christ. The test is never if they are perfect, for nobody is, but are they being changed?

Good works are not the cause of salvation but the result of salvation. “Just as the body is dead without breath, so also faith is dead without good works” (James 2:26 NLT).

A mark of a true Christian is in how surrendered their life is before the Lord. When we give up the right to ourselves, it will be there we have the life of Christ forming in us. Getting saved is done in an instant, but the proof of salvation is revealed over time.

As Christ sacrificed His life for us, so we should sacrifice our life to Him. “…present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1 NKJV).

Another mark of a true Christian is there is a before and an after, with a distinct difference between the two. If your life has been changed by Christ, then can you see the change that He has made? The true Christian has experienced a true change that can come from none other than the Lord.

The more reconciled to God, the more consecrated from the world. “Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you, but be inwardly transformed by the Holy Spirit through a total reformation of how you think. This will empower you to discern God’s will as you live a beautiful life, satisfying and perfect in his eyes” (Romans 12:2 TPT).

Another mark of a true Christian is with how humble they are before others. The more someone tries to lift themselves up before others, the less they are bowed down before our Lord. The prouder a person is, the further they are from knowing the Lord.

The higher your faith, the less you will look down on others. “…Do not think that you are better than you are. You must see yourself as you really are…” (Romans 12:3 ICB).

Another mark of a true Christian is in their desire to be obedient to the Lord. Before we are Christians, we serve our own interests. A true Christian will more and more serve the interests of the Lord. Obedience will not save, for Christ alone can do that. But a true Christian desires to be obedient.

Christ can only reveal Himself to you in your obedience because it is only then you are in the light whereby you can see Him. Jesus taught, “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him” (John 14:21 NKJV).

Another mark of a true Christian is in the love they have for others. If Christ is being formed in you, then the love of Christ will pour out from you. It is not that He makes you more loving but that His life in you causes His love to pour out through you.

The proof of Jesus formed in you is what comes out of you. “My children, I am suffering birth pains for you again until Christ is formed in you” (Galatians 4:19 GW).

Another mark of a true Christian is in how they respond to those who mistreat them. It is by the power of the Holy Spirit alone that a man or a woman can be changed so that they can supernaturally forgive their enemies and extend mercy to them.

The measure of your faith is how you treat others who mistreat you. Jesus taught, “But I say to you, love [that is, unselfishly seek the best or higher good for] your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44 AMP).

Don’t get hung up on where you’re at in your faith journey, but make sure that you’re on the right path to begin with. Spend more time with the Lord Jesus in prayer and more time in the Word that you would grow. Place your faith in Christ and let Him reign in your life.

God has worked salvation into you, but it is up to you to work it out. “…work out your salvation [that is, cultivate it, bring it to full effect, actively pursue spiritual maturity] with awe-inspired fear and trembling” (Philippians 2:12 AMP).

Friend, if you wonder whether your salvation is true or not, do not despair, but only go to Jesus. Give your life to Him, and your life will be in good hands. Jesus can never fail, so let Him reign in your life. Make today the day you will finally do it.

Blessings to you,

Paul Balius

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