How Does a Person Know If They Are a True Christian?


Some of you are going to be upset with me for even talking about this, but I must be faithful to the charge God has given me. God's word says there will be many who thought they were Christians but don't really know Him, and when He comes they will be terrified at not being able to enter the kingdom of God. So I don't want that to ever happen to you. Jesus said that many would come to Him on that day and be locked out. "Lord, Lord,' they said, 'open the door for us'!" (Matthew 25:11; Matthew 7:22-23).

The question is, how do you know if you are genuinely born again of the Spirit and will go to be with Christ when He comes? We're asking this because in our daily meditations over the last few days, we have been talking about Jesus telling Nicodemus that unless a man is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God (John 3:3). Let's explore this critical question.

Several years ago, a young girl came to the elders of a church wanting to become a part of the church. First, she was asked, “Did you ever find out that you were a sinner?” “Yes,” she said without hesitation, “I did indeed.” The second question put to her was, “Do you think, my girl, that you have undergone a change?” “I know I have,” was the immediate reply. “Well,” the question came, “and what change has come over you?” “Well,” she said, “it's like this. Before I was converted, I was running after sin. Now, I am running away from it.” This change of character is evidence of a born-again experience; it’s both a change of attitude and a change of direction.[1]

Let's take some time to go over some of the evidence of a person being born-again, but beware that these things are not seen as checkmarks of things that you can do. The characteristics below are the fruit of an inner change created by the Spirit and not by our flesh.

1). Do you honestly believe the Gospel? We are not talking about a mental acknowledgment of the truth of the message, but a heart belief that lives out godly values in your daily life. Your life will show if you believe or not. Jesus said, “By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?" (Matthew 7:16). There should be growing evidence of the fruit of the Spirit in your life (Galatians 5:16-25).

2). Is there a thankful and loving heart of appreciation toward the Lord Jesus for dying on the cross for you?

3). Do you have a hunger to know God’s Word? But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him” (1 John 2:5).

4). Is there anticipation in your heart for the return of Christ? 2"Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure” (1 John 3:2-3).

5). Are you upset and disappointed with yourself when you sin? If you have invited Christ to sit on the throne of your life and have given Him control, the Spirit will convict you when you sin.

6). Do you love others that love God? Do you enjoy being around other Christians? “We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death” (1 John 3:14).

7). Do you have a conscious awareness of the Spirit at work in your life? If so, then this also is evidence of the presence of God at work in you: “We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit” (1 John 4:13).

My dear friends, my longing and prayer before God in writing such words, is that you will have a sure hope and confidence before God at His coming. Keith Thomas

This meditation is a shortened version of the in-depth study: You Must Be Born Again

[1] A. Naismith, 1200 Notes, Quotes and Anecdotes, Printed in England by Marshall Pickering, 1963, Page 41