A “Christian” is a member of the family of God and a follower of Jesus the Christ. In the Bible, we read about the history of the relationship between God and God’s people. And sometime right around 2,000 years ago, out of great love for us, God appeared among us as the man we call Jesus Christ. While he walked the earth, Jesus taught a radical reorientation of hearts and minds, calling on all to live lives of love, forgiveness, humility, repentance, and TRUST in the goodness and abundance of God.
Followers of Jesus Christ (sometimes called “people of The Way”) are those that look to Jesus’ teachings and way of life as a model for their own. Together, we strive to live by the example of Christ in the way we treat one another and those in our community.
But Jesus was also more than just a “role model” for faithful living. He also radically transformed our relationship to God. In his death and resurrection, Jesus created the pathway to eternal life with God. In 1 Corinthians 15:20-24, we read that Jesus was the “first fruits”, the one who forged the path ahead. And we hear in Romans 6:1-4, that in our baptism, God claims us and joins us to Christ forever, so that as Christ died and was raised, so to will we.
Living in the reality and confidence that God has claimed us as his own, we are freed and empowered to proclaim God’s radical message of grace and forgiveness to all!