The word Christian was first applied to believers at the ancient church of Antioch sometime during the first century after the birth of Jesus Christ. From that day forward that name has been used, abused and confused. In the Greek, the “ian” at the end of the name of Christ literally means a “little copy” and would imply that if I want to call myself a Christian, I am claiming to be a little copy of the Christ, the messiah from Jehovah, Jesus of Nazareth.
It is something not to be taken lightly and should never be applied corporately as it is actually done today. Catholics, Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians and others often refer to members of their particular body as Christians. This may not be the case and it means that we are deceiving those around us and ourselves as well.
In recent years, the term born-again has emerged and has been used by some to clarify their own position in relation to the term Christian. Others have initiated the term True Christian to indicate that alignment is not the determining criteria.
At Schuyler Baptist Church, we believe the steps to becoming a Christian are simple but very clear.
First, I must acknowledge that I am lost. And I must at least accept what being Lost means. Being lost simply means I am not in a relationship with Jesus Christ as my Savior. Notice I did not say as my “Lord and Savior”. He is Lord. Period. And someday every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord (Romans 14:11). But I must decide that I want Him to be MY Savior. It is simply a matter of whether or not I am willing to believe what God is saying. It does NOT mean I believe. I cannot do that until I have received God’s gift of faith. I must at least be willing to believe. Only then, will I be willing to confess my own depravity. This does not require rocket science. In fact if you try to apply science to this, you may not make it.
Second, I must want God to save me through His Son, Jesus Christ. I may not understand how He can do that and I don’t have to. I just need to want Him to do so.
Once I reach this point, God is ready to share with me the gift of fiath.
But how do I know that He has?