You prayed a prayer. You accepted Jesus into your heart. But you don’t feel differently. How do you know if praying that prayer was enough and you are truly saved?
Check out these 10 marks of a Christian to know for sure:
1. A New Outlook on Life
“So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5: 16-17)
When I first became a Christian, I didn’t feel differently, but I remember seeing the world from a new perspective. Life looked a bit brighter and I had more hope than ever. When you accept Christ, the Holy Spirit dwells within you. That’s reason alone to feel hopeful about the future. But suddenly you live in the knowledge that this life is not all there is. A new life awaits you in heaven.
2. An Aversion to Sin
“Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.” (2 Corinthians 7:10)
I wasn’t a horrible person before I knew the Lord, but I certainly did my fair share of sinning – the biggest of which was lying. Lying had become such a habit that I didn’t know how to separate truth from fiction. When I yielded my life to Christ, it was like He had rewired my brain. I knew the minute I went to tell a lie, I felt a strange sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. This told me to stop what I was doing and tell the truth. This is the Holy Spirit doing its job of convicting me to turn my life away from sin and towards God.
3. An Abundance of Love
“We love because he first loved us.” (1 John 4:19)
Before knowing God, it was easy to love people who were like me and dislike those different from me. However, there remained a hole in my heart that only God could fill. After accepting Christ, I was able to love others more abundantly. When I experienced love from the father that filled the hole in my heart, I was able to spread that love to others, eager for them to fill the hole in their hearts as well.
4. A Hunger for the Word
“As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God…” (Psalm 42:1-2a)
I hadn’t read the Bible for myself when I was growing up. I was ignorant about what the Bible said and how to apply it to my life. Once I began to read it for myself, the more I fell in love with the Word. I studied it through commentaries and my own research, and I began to apply it practically. Soon I was being called to teach it to others as well. A hunger to know what the word of God says is an indication that we yearn to be close to our Father.
5. An Attachment to the Body of Christ
“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another.” (Hebrews 10:24-25a)
We were never made to live life on our own. We need others to help us along on our spiritual journey. As Christians, we need to become attached to the body of Christ and spend time getting to know other brothers and sisters in Christ. They help guide our way when the path seems hard to navigate, encourage us when we are down, and celebrate with us in our triumphs.
6. A Removal of Shame
“There is therefore no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 8:8)
When we are saved, Christ’s death covers over all of our sin and reconciles us to the Father. No longer do we have to live under the weight of our sin, afraid we will never be worthy enough to reconcile with God. When we have sinned, all we need to do is confess our sin to the Lord, and repent from our ways. Christ’s death allow us to live without condemnation, free in our knowledge that we are worthy simply because we are God’s children.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)
7. A Discovery of New Gifts
At conversion, the Holy Spirit gives us special gifts made. These gifts are outlined in Romans 12: 6-8 and 1 Corinthians 12: 7-11 and include skills like leadership, organization, and prophecy. We are encouraged to use these gifts to build up our other brothers and sisters within the body. These are separate from other gifts and talents we might use in our daily lives. These gifts help us find our purpose and mission within the church.
8. A New Sense of Intimacy
“By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.” (1 John 3:16)
Throughout life we struggle to achieve intimacy within the relationships in our lives. These relationships include our families, romantic relationships, and friendships. Without Christ, we live for ourselves, doing whatever we can to make sure our needs are met, often at the expense of others’ feelings and needs. But with Christ, we learn to put others first, sacrificing our needs and striving to put others before ourselves.
9. A New Sense of Fellowship
“Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.” (1 Corinthians 12:27)
Throughout my life, I felt like I didn’t belong. I didn’t share the same interests as my friends, and I didn’t want to participate in the same topics of conversations. But when I became a Christian, I immediately felt like I found people who really liked me for who I was, not what I looked like or who I knew. Like the missing piece in a jigsaw puzzle, I fit into the body of Christ. Although the church is comprised of those who may be misfits in society, we are the perfect fit for each other.
10. A Yearning to Proclaim Christ to Others
One of the best examples of salvation in Scripture is in the book of John. The woman at the well was burnt out on life, wrung out by marriages gone bad and ashamed of whom she was. Yet one encounter with Jesus changed everything. Once she chose to drink the well of salvation rather than grasp for earthly water, this once silent woman who wanted to avoid others during the day is now telling everyone she can about Him.
When we drink from the well of salvation, His water tastes so satisfying that we can’t help but tell others about the salvation we have experienced in Christ.
The Best Decision of Your Life
The best decision you can make today is to ask Jesus to become Lord of your life. Simply asking forgiveness for the wrongs you have committed, repent of those evil ways, and commit to following the Lord wholeheartedly. God will invite you to a new life filled with unconditional love, freedom, and peace that you have never experienced before.
“Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9)
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” (John 14: 27)
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