Summary: This sermon is an effort to clarify the true meaning of the term "Christianity."
Scripture: Acts 11:26
Title: “A Definition of Christianity”
Introduction: What a sweet, suggestive title “Christian.” They were called after the name of Christ because they had believed on Him, and turned to Him, and were now, with full purpose of heart, living for Him.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful nowadays if all who call themselves “Christians” would display the identifying characteristics of Christianity.
I fear that the “Definition of Christianity” has been blurred. I appreciate the efforts of the leaders of our country to unite during these difficult times, but not to the POINT of further distorting the ability to understand what “Christianity” really is.
A very simple definition of Christianity is: To be “Christ-like!”
I. HOW BEING A CHRISTIAN BEGINS.
a. The ONLY way to get into the HUMAN FAMILY is to be BORN into it.
b. Everybody has a BIRTHDAY every year because BIRTH is the method God has ordained for transmitting human life from one generation to the next.
c. What’s true in the PHYSICAL is also true of the SPIRITUAL: the ONLY way to possess God’s life and enter God’s family is through BIRTH. * Jesus said, “You must be born again.” (John 3:7)
d. Like PHYSICAL birth, SPIRITUAL birth involves two parents, and these two parents are the Spirit of God and the Word of God.
e. When you believe the gospel, repent of your sins, and trust Jesus Christ, you are immediately born into God’s family and receive everlasting life: “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life” (John 3:36).
f. Being a Christian means possessing the life of Christ within, being able to boldly say, “Christ lives in me” (Gal. 2:20).
II. A CHANGING OF OUR NATURE.
a. Birth involves two parents who IMPART life to us, and this life-giving birth determines our NATURE.
b. Those who have been born again are “partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust” (2 Peter 1:4).
c. Jesus lived His complete life being directed by God’s “Divine Nature.”
d. Your NATURE will DETERMINE: Appetite – Associations (who you hang around with) – Abilities.
An airplane pilot during World War 1 took off from a field in Kobar, Arabia. While the plane was on the ground a rat somehow got into the aircraft. After the pilot was in the air he heard the rat gnawing on something behind him. Alarmed by the thought of disaster, he remembered that rats cannot live in high altitudes. So he pointed his plane upward until breathing was difficult. After some time, when the gnawing had ceased, he descended to a landing where he found the rat had died. Many, if not most, of our struggles can be ELIMINATED by rising to a higher altitude in our Christian walk.
III. HOW TO KNOW YOU ARE SAVED.
a. One of the GREATEST evidences of salvation is: “Love.” – “We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.” (1 John 3:14)
b. “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” (John 13:34-35)