People really seem to have the wrong idea about what Christianity is, and what it means to be a Christian.
It's extremely common to hear certain words/names associated with Christian people:
"Holier than thou"
The truth about Christianity, however, is much different than what the average person thinks about it. I'd love to break down the simple basics of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
No one is better than anyone else. No one.
A lot of people seem to have the idea that Christians think they are "holy", or that they are "better" than other people. As a Baptist Christian, can I be quite candid with you, that is simply not true. At least not for anyone who actually believes what the Bible says.
"But he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. For not he that commendeth himself is approved, but whom the Lord commendeth." 2 Corinthians 10:17-18
"The rich and the poor meet together: the Lord is the maker of them all." Proverbs 22:2
No one is "better" than anyone; we (Christians) don't believe that we are better than anyone, and we do not judge you. Judging people is not our job. That is the job of God the Father. (not Christ). Christ came to save those who will call upon His name.
"Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why not beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to they brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam of of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye." Matthew 7:1-5
We do not think we are better than anyone. We are ALL sinners. No one person is any better than anyone else.
"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:" Romans 3:23
We do not believe that we are "holy" at all. That is WHY we need Christ.
A lot of people like to make the argument, calling Christians hypocritical simply because we think that we are "holy" and that we should never sin, and once we sin, we are hypocrites in our faith. This is absurd, unbiblical, and simply not true/nor how we think.
We. Are. All. Sinners. All of us. Sin entered this world when Satan tempted Eve in the Garden of Eden. Since that day, man has been born of sin. It's like a curse. We cannot escape it. And nothing we do, good deeds, good works, charity, etc, nothing can stack up to forgive us of our sins. Nothing. NOTHING that we do as human beings can stack up agains the Perfection that God requires.
Being saved doesn't mean we are sinless. Quite the opposite; I am saved because I need Christ. I am still a sinner. I still sin, everyday. THAT IS WHY I NEED CHRIST. I was a sinner, and then I heard what Christ did for me. After that, I was infused with the Holy Ghost; the Comforter. The Spirit of God Himself dwells in me.
"And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever." John 14:16
Once we have the Holy Spirit, we now have the choice. Christ dwells within us, directing us and convicting us. It is because He loves us that he chastens us:
"For whom the Lord loveth He correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth." Proverbs 3:12
If God didn't love us, He wouldn't chasten us.
What is the Gospel?
The gospel is the life and teachings of Jesus Christ of Nazareth. It is Gods love. The Gospel can be explained quite simply:
-God made man
-Man sinned against God
-God promised Abraham that his descendants shall give birth to the Messiah, one who will save humanity from their sins
-God sent Jesus Christ to this Earth, born of a virgin (this is crucial, because reproduction is a result of sin, Christ was not born of a man, therefore He was sinless)
-Christ lived a perfect life, and died on the cross for our sins so that we wouldn't have to pay the price. That price is eternity in Hell
The Gospel as described by Brian Keith Moore:
In that place between wakefulness and dreams, I found myself in the room.
There were no distinguishing features save for the one wall covered with
small index card files. They were like the ones in libraries that list
titles by author or subject in alphabetical order. But these files, which
stretched from floor to ceiling and right to left as far as the eye could
see, had very different headings.
As I walked up to the wall of files,the first to catch my attention was one
that read, "People I Have Liked." I opened it and began flipping through the
cards. I quickly shut it, shocked to realize that I recognized the names
written on each one. And then, without being told, I knew exactly where I
This lifeless room with its small files was a crude catalog system for my
entire life. The actions of my every moment, big and small, were written in
a detail my memory couldn't match. A sense of wonder and curiosity, mixed
with horror, stirred within me as I began randomly opening files and
exploring their content. Some brought joy and sweet memories, others a sense
of shame and regret so intense that I would look over my shoulder to see if
anyone was watching.
A file named "Friends" was next to one marked "Friends I have betrayed". The
titles ranged from common, everyday things to the not-so-common-"Books I
Have Read", "Lies I Have Told", "Comfort I Have Given", "Jokes I Have
Laughed At". Some were almost hilarious in their exactness: "Things I Have
Yelled At My Brothers and Sisters." Others I couldn't laugh at: "Things I
Have Done in Anger", "Things I Have Muttered Under My Breath at My Parents".
I never ceased to be surprised by the contents. Often there were many more
cards than I expected. Sometimes less than I had hoped.
The sheer volume of the life I had lived overwhelmed me. Could it be
possible that I had time in my 17 years to write each of these thousands or
millions of cards? But each card confirmed the truth. Each card was written
in my own handwriting. Each card was signed with my signature. When I pulled
out the file marked "Songs I Have Listened To", I realized the files grew to
contain their contents. The cards were packed tightly, and yet after two or
three yards, I hadn't found the end of the file. I shut it, shamed, not so
much by the quality of music, but more by the vast amount of time I knew
that file represented. When I came to the file marked "Lustful
Thoughts"; I felt a chill run through my body. I pulled the file out only an
inch, not willing to test its size, and drew out a card. I shuddered at its
detailed content. I felt sick to think such a moment had been recorded.
A feeling of humiliation and anger ran through my body. One thought
dominated my mind: "No one must ever see these cards! No one must ever see
this room! I have to destroy them!" In an insane frenzy, I yanked the file
out. Its size didn't matter now. I had to empty it and burn the cards. But
as I took the file at one end and began pounding it on the floor, I could
not dislodge a single card. I became desperate and pulled out a card, only
to find it as strong as steel when I tried to tear it. Defeated and utterly
helpless, I returned the file to its slot. Leaning my forehead against the
wall, I let out a long, self-pitying sigh.
That was when I saw it. The file bore "People I Have Shared the Gospel
With". The handle was brighter than those around it, newer, almost unused. I
pulled on its handle and a small box not more than 3 inches long fell into
my hands. I could count the cards it contained on one hand. And then the
tears came. I began to weep. Sobs so deep that the hurt started in my
stomach and shook through me. I fell on my knees and cried. I cried out of
shame, from the overwhelming shame of it all. The rows of file shelves
swirled in my tear-filled eyes. No one must ever, ever know of this room. I
must lock it up and hide the key.
Then as I looked up through my tears, I saw Him enter the room. No, please
not Him. Not here. Anyone but Jesus. I watched helplessly as He began to
open the files and read the cards. I couldn't bear to watch His response.
The few times I looked at His face I saw such sadness that it tore at my
heart. He seemed to intuitively go to the worst boxes. Why did he have to
read every one?
Finally, He turned and looked at me from across the room. He looked at me
with pity in His eyes. But this was a pity that didn't anger me. I dropped
my head, covered my face with my hands and began to cry again. He walked
over and put his arm around me. He could have said so many things. But He
didn't say a word. He just cried with me.
Then He got up and walked back to the wall of files. Starting at one end of
the room, He took out a file, and, one by one began to sign His name over
mine on each card. "No!" I shouted, rushing to Him. All I could find to say
was "No, no", as I pulled the card from Him. His name shouldn't be on these
cards. But there it was, written in red so rich, so dark, so alive. The name
of Jesus covered mine. It was written in blood.
He gently took the card back. He smiled a sad smile and began to sign the
cards. I don't think I'll ever understand how He did it so quickly, but the
next instant it seemed I heard Him close the last file and walk back to my
side. He placed His hand on my shoulder and said, "It is finished." I stood
up, and He led me out of the room. There was no lock on the door. There were
still cards to be written.
And that is essentially what the Gospel is. Our sins against Gods perfection. The ONLY way to be right with God is through Jesus Christ, who blots out our sins, who writes HIS perfect name on our cards with our sins on them.
When Christ died, the veil in the Temple was torn in half. that veil kept out everyone from the Holy of Holies, a place where the lead Priest went once a year to atone for the sins of himself and of the nation. God's presence dwelt there. He and he alone was aloud to go and make the sacrifices, and that was the point of priest.
We no longer have a use for priest because we don't need a mediator between God and man anymore. That mediator was Christ. He is now our link to God. No longer do we need to go to a priest to have him ask God to atone for our sins; all you have to do is ask Jesus Christ.
I truly recommend watching this video. It is a "rap" (not really a rap, just fast talking) of the G.O.S.P.E.L of Christ. Even if you don't believe in God, this video is genius and well done artistically.
I hope people now have a better understand of what a Christian is, and what it means to be saved. I'm no better than you, and you're no better than me. The only difference is, I have asked Christ to forgive me of my sins. And He has. He can and will forgive your sins too; all you have to do is simply, "ask".