I was discussing with some guys about Christian life and in the cause of our discussion we started talking about born again and one of the guys we were discussing with now asked us the difference between being born again and being a Christian and he now said we should stop using the word born again and instead use the word, Christian. But one other guy said that people have bastardized the word Christian and so to differentiate between a true believer you have to use the word born again. The thing is, many Christians lack the heart attitude of a Christian as a result of this, one can no longer differentiate the so-called Christian from a true Christian.
But is there a difference between being a Christian and being born again, what makes one a Christian? People often use the term “Christian, as simply a category for describing someone’s cultural, religious, or family heritage”. Other people believe that a person is a Christian because he or she attends church or was raised in a godly home, yet others take a Christian to be one that bears the name John, James, Peter, or one of the Christian name.
What is it that really makes one a Christian? The Christian is one who expresses and demonstrates the life, nature, character and righteousness of Christ. You can not express and demonstrate this life unless you have His Spirit in you and the only way for you to have this Spirit in you is by being born again.
A Christian is that man or that woman who is born again in other words every man that is born again is a Christian. That one bears a Christian name or is born from a Christian family does not make one a Christian.
To be a Christian is an individual affair, the followers of Christ in the Bible days were called Christians because they accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior and this automatically makes them born again.
A Christian is a man, woman, or child who has experienced a spiritual new birth through the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit. That new birth is a gift of God, through Jesus Christ, given by the grace He freely offers to all.
That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit (John 3:6). The new birth depicts one born of Spirit and so for a Christian that is born of the Spirit, there is a heart attitude that he or she possesses. This heart attitude manifests itself from inside to outside. The outside manifestation is what when one sees will say of a truth this is a Christian (born again).
By their fruit, you shall know them (Mathew 7:20). Every Christian possesses this fruit, the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22) which is the heart attitude that is manifested in the outside. The attitude of your heart that shape your character. It comes into play through your relationship with God and others. You can not say you are a Christian without possessing this heart and it manifesting in the outside. The Bible says “let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven”(Math 5:16).
The heart attitude of a Christian is an inward attitude of the heart which is fundamental to Christian character.
When you become a Christian, there will be an awakening within you that you are a Christian. The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God (Rom 8:16). You begin to see yourself always wanting to do the right thing. This is so because of the new nature that has come inside of you that produces the heart attitude that is manifested in the outside as a Christian character.
The essence of Christianity is Christ dwelling inside of you and manifesting Himself outwardly, touching and changing lives through you. In other words, true Christianity is to ‘have the mind of Christ,’ which is demonstrated in love for God and neighbor. This love is shared abroad in the heart of a Christian by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Christianity is chiefly an inward work of the Holy Spirit in the life of God’s people. God is not concerned with men conforming outwardly to some religious system but rather that they are conformed inwardly to the image of His Son (Rom 8:29).
Your attitude towards life, circumstances, or other people should always be like the lords. For this is part of what differentiates a Christian(born again) from a none Christian.