Summary: Looks at the reason to become a believer & the responsibilities that go with it. Expanded outline.
WHY AM I A CHRISTIAN
Why am I a Christian? Why do I love Jesus? There are many things I could tell you about how I came to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. I am sure the Lord used many things and people in your life to cause you to come to know Him.
1. Material blessings -
Some people come to Christ, or come to church, in search of money, possessions, and blessings. In Matthew chapter 6, Jesus says our Heavenly Father will provide for and take care of His children, so some come looking for that provision. There are preachers on TV and around the world who will tell you that if you are a good Christian and trust God enough, that He will pour out material blessings on your life.
Last Sunday I had the opportunity to visit with some missionaries who just returned from serving in Argentina. As we visited, they lamented that there were people across that country, who were using the little money they had, to travel to large crusades where they were persuaded that by giving enough or trusting enough, God would pour out blessings on them and they could become materially prosperous.
May I tell you that I am grateful to the Lord for the blessings He has given me? Gladys, Drew, and I recently had the opportunity to travel out West. While there we saw whole communities made up of homes considerably smaller, older, and more decrepit than ours. There were whole communities, where the people are on the brink of poverty, where their groceries cost considerably more than ours because of the expense required to transport them.
My friends, if you go from there, to just over the border into Mexico, you will notice how greatly God has blessed us with material goods in this country. Why, the homes you and I live in are better than most of our folks would have believed they could ever have afforded just a few generations ago.
God has blessed us materially, and I am grateful, but that is not why I am a Christian.
2. Christian Upbringing – I could say I am a Christian because of my Christian upbringing, and that would be partially true. Children often adopt the religion of their parents.
I thank the Lord for my Christian parents. I thank the Lord that they saw to it that we regularly attended church. I thank the Lord for parents who modeled Christianity before me, and who demonstrated what it meant to trust Jesus, even during difficult times.
Who knows how many Children are led to faith in Christ by authentic Christian parents and how many are deceived and driven away from the faith by parents who profess one thing and live another? Our family has a lot to do with our beliefs.
Not only were my parents Christians, but 3 out of 4 of my grandparents were as well, and the 4th became a Christian shortly before he died.
My Mom grew up with a mother who had them at church, and involved in the church’s activities all through her childhood.
My dad came from devoutly Christian parents. My Dad’s grandfather was a circuit-riding Presbyterian minister from Tennessee. Some of my earliest memories are of my grandfather teaching my brother, cousins and I, the books of the Bible and Bible verses.
I come from Christian stock and I have no doubt God used my family in leading me to Him, but that is not the core reason I am a Christian, or that I love Jesus. I believe we all know people who grew up in Christian homes, who are not Christians, who do not love Jesus.
3. Basically Good – Some people claim they are Christians because they are basically good. They want to help people, they have good hearts, and by nature they are just good.
Now, the Bible says that is not true. The Bible says “There is none righteous, no not one.” In Romans 3:11 we read:
>Romans 3:11 There is no one who understands, there is no one who seeks God.
I really don’t know, I really don’t understand how people can believe, or even claim that they are by nature, good.
> 2 Corinthians 5:14 says For Christ’s love compels us. If there is any good thing in me, it is only because of Christ. I know the battles I fight. I know the temptations the Devil sends. Even with Christ in me, I often feel like the Apostle Paul when he complained that he did things he didn’t want to do, and didn’t do what he wanted to.
I know that if Jesus were to take His hand off of me for an instant, that I would go spiraling out of control, weighed down by my own selfishness, and pride.