A friend recently shared an online article with the title, “How To Be A Good Christian With Minimal Effort.” The article was a satire article, but it caused me to reflect on why we are drawn to only following God when it is convenient for us. If we were able to be a good Christian with minimal effort, we would need to ask the deeper question, “What is the minimum that God expects of a Christian?” I could give you my opinion, but that doesn’t really matter. What matters is what God has already told us what He expects. So let’s look at the Scriptures.
Love the Lord your God with all of your heart, soul, and mind. (Matthew 22:37)
“Confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead.” (Romans 10:9)
Jesus said, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” (John 14:15)
Just as you have been forgiven, you must forgive others, or God will not forgive you. (Matthew 6:14-15)
And Jesus said to all, “If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me.” (Luke 9:23)
These are a few of the themes that we see throughout the Bible. We could list others, but these alone are enough to help us see how difficult it is to be a Christian. If we think there is a low standard that we can somehow attain on our own in order to be made right with God, we’re fooling ourselves. All of these verses listed above require constant faith in Jesus. Hebrews 11:6 says that “without faith it is impossible to please God.” We must rely on Christ for even the ability to love God, confess Him, believe in Him, forgive others, keep God’s commandments, etc. If you would like to talk to someone about what it means to be a Christian, we would love to talk with you and help you learn to follow Jesus.