What is Christianity?
What does it mean to be a Christian?
Most people, including many who claim to be Christian, simply do not understand the answer to this question. I’ve stated this before but it bears repeating: I’m not new to believing in God, but I am relatively new – within the last four years – to actually getting it, and asking Jesus to come into my life.
But I haven’t really answered the question, have I? Let’s go back a couple thousand years. The book of Acts explains the Apostles actions after the departure of Jesus. At this point, His followers were little more than an unorganized and frightened group of people. However, when the Holy Spirit came upon them, as Jesus had promised, they understood completely the importance of who they were and what they stood for. They were no longer Jewish, in a religious sense, but were followers of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. It was during this time that the Christian Church began to form. Realizing the need for a cohesive and comprehensive statement of who they were and what they stood for, the early followers created a creed. The Apostles Creed, which dates back to a time period shortly after the ascension of Jesus, explains Christianity in perfect detail. It reads as follows:
I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth; And in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord: who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; the third day he rose from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.
The affirmation of one holy Catholic Church declares belief in only one true church. The word catholic comes from a Biblical Greek term, katholikos, which means universal.
That’s it. That’s what it’s all about.
At this juncture, I’d like to make an important point – real Christians are not self-righteous, holier-than-thou individuals. On the contrary, we battle with sin and our sinful nature on a daily basis. Accepting Jesus into our lives does indeed change us, but it does not take us out of the world. We are still very much in the game, susceptible to the same weaknesses, fears, and desires as everyone else. The only real difference is that we have realized this and have asked Jesus for his help.
So, what do you think? Did I answer the question?