What is a good Christian
Sometimes I feel like I’m not being a good Christian. I mean, I do what I’m supposed to do. I lead a bible study for the youth group, I tithe, I lead a house that is trying our best to follow God’s word, but sometimes I feel guilty that I’m not doing enough.
I compare myselfs to other Christians who look like they have it all together and are doing so much more or have so much more faith than I do. I just feel like I’m not doing enough compared to them. I felt like I wasn’t a “good” Christian.
Once I started thinking about that, I thought about how silly it sounds that there are goor or bad Christians.
There aren’t good or bad Christians. Just Christians
I’ll probably get misunderstood if you just read the first bit of this section so please read this whole section. Being a Christian isn’t a way of life. Praying, tithing, helping others, going to church or reading the Bible won’t get you into Heaven. We aren’t saved by any of those things.
We are saved because of this:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16.
This is pretty clear what it means to be saved. It means believing in Jesus. You aren’t saved because you’re a good person. You aren’t saved because you read the Bible more than someone else. You are saved because you believe in Jesus.
Does that mean you shouldn’t do acts of service? No. James (Jesus’ brother) talked about this in his letter.
“So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” James 2:17
So faith fills us with the Holy Spirit and being filled with the Holy Spirit, we joyfully go out and do good works. If you profess your faith but aren’t filled with the Holy Spirit and the desire to do good works then that was an empty profession of faith.
Long story short, there are no teirs of Christianity. There is only Christianity. You don’t get more or less saved based off of the amount of good works you’ve done.
You’re either 100% for Jesus or you aren’t for him at all
If you read what Jesus said, you have to make a decision. He is either the son of God or he is a liar and everything he teached is wrong. There is no middle ground. He was very clear about that.
This is binary. This isn’t on a spectrum. Its black or white. You either believe he rose from the dead and is in fact the son of God, or your think he is a liar. You can’t think he is just an interesting guy. So because of that, you are either 100% for him or against him. You can’t cherry pick the good “Hallmark” verses he said and ignore the difficult to follow ones.
Because you’re either 100% for or against him, it makes the idea of a good or bad Christian sound a little silly. Just like the point above, there is no spectrum of faith or teirs of Christianity. It’s binary.
Good Christians should not exist
I love the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus lays out exactly how we should live our lives. He doesn’t sugarcoat it, he just tells you exactly what to do and that’s it.
The other day I was reading Matthew 6 and there were a lot of repeated sayings. Here’s one of the verses I’m talking about:
“Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that you may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.” Matthew 6:2 (emphasis added)
He says this for praying and fasting too. People who bring attention to their faithfulness have already received their earthly reward. They’re bringing attention to themselves because they want other people to say how good of a Christian they are. He’s mostly talking about the pharisees, but think about him saying that today.
Who would he be talking about today? He is probably referring to the “good” Christians. We all know who he is referring to.
So the idea that there are good or bad Christians is just insane. We should compare ourselves to Jesus, not to our peers. So we are all terrible Christians when compared to Him. We should also not worry about things like this because he didn’t tell us to be superficial Christians. He said to do good works in secrecy so no one knew what you did. The standards we make for ourselves are 100% not present in the Bible.