What is a Christian?
Whether you identify as a Christian or not, you may recognize Jesus’s words in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Jesus goes on to say in verse 17, “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” This is the gospel—and what an extraordinary promise and hope!
Two significant differences between Christianity and all other religions are (1) the understanding that God is a personal God who desires a personal relationship with us, and (2) this personal relationship with God is based on grace and is a gift, not obtained through anything we do. Ephesians 2:8-9 tells us, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.” In Jesus we find the answers to the deep questions of the soul.
At this link Ravi shares his journey to embrace the Christian God through Jesus Christ:
Pastor and author Tim Keller writes, “The gospel is this: We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.”[i] Sin can be defined as our rebellion against our Creator and his ways. We are separated from God because of our sin, and we can do nothing to bridge this chasm.
According to the Scriptures, to be saved one needs to "believe on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ" (Acts 8:16; Romans 10:9-10). What are we to believe? We are to believe that we are alienated and separated from God because of our rebellion towards him. God made a way for us to have a personal relationship with him by sending Jesus, who lived a perfect life, to bear the penalty of our sin on the cross. Jesus is God's Deliverer, Redeemer, and Author of our salvation. Through Jesus’ life, death, burial, and resurrection we can receive forgiveness and be reconciled to our Creator God. We simply need to believe this and align our lives accordingly. Salvation includes repentance, a turning away from one way of living and turning towards the life found in Jesus.
Prayer is a way for people to talk to God and to experience intimacy with him as his dearly loved child. If you have decided to become a follower of Jesus, then voice your heart to your Creator. Acknowledge that you are sinful and separated from God, and you have decided to turn away from your old lifestyle and believe in Jesus Christ as your Savior. This prayer is an expression of your mind and heart to believe in Jesus Christ for salvation and to become a Christian.
When we come to Christ, the Holy Spirit comes to live within us to give us the strength to live as we should. God tells us, “The Spirit helps us in our weakness” (Romans 8:26).
After one becomes a Christian, it is important to find a fellowship of other Christian believers with which to worship and to grow in faith together. We encourage you to read and study the Christian Bible every day, beginning with the book of John (the gospel), as well as spending time in prayer.
[i] Tim Keller, The Meaning of Marriage