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100 Characteristics of Authentic Christians

“May God sanctify you… spirit, soul and body… (1 Thes. 5:23).” We moral human beings were created in the image of God (Gen. 1:26). “God is Spirit… (John 4:24);” and though we have physical traits, talents and attributes; it is our spiritual composition that makes our character and affects our soul and salvation. This article will offer some definitions, a brief insert on ‘nominal Christians’ and examine 100 characteristics that genuine mature Christians possess.

God ‘breathed breath into us – the breath of life – and we became living beings (Gen. 2: 7).’ God breathed ‘wind (oxygen),’ ‘breath,’ ‘spirit’ and ‘soul’ into us humans.   And immediately in growth and continued live we humans developed characteristics.

Definitions

Authentic: genuine; true; real; not false; worthy of acceptance; made the same way as an original; true to one’s own spirit or character; bona fide.

Characteristics: distinguishing traits; features and or qualities belonging typically to a person; attributes; properties; integral parts; composition or components of the whole; elements.

Christian: one who professes Jesus Christ and follows His teachings; a member of the body (assembly/congregation) of Christ; conforming with Christianity; has the Spirit of God and Jesus Christ.

Heart: the heart, mind, character, inner self, will, center of being, mind, Spirit, Soul.

Mind: the reason, intellect, faculties of perceiving and understanding and feeling; psuche, to breathe, psyche, seat of affections; the SOUL.

Soul: psuche, psyche, a person’s distinct identity, vital breath, breath of life, the seat of affections and will; Heart; the individual person; life; living being; SELF.

Spiritual: immortal; relating to, affecting and also from the soul or other spirits (heavenly, worldly, demonic); usually unseen; not temporal or tangible in the physical sense of material; incorporeal and ethereal (not of this world). Affects and drives the soul and physical body. Strong’s Concordance calls it wind, breath, spirit. Strong’s says correctly: ‘the spirit is the vital principle by which the body is animated.’ It is the power of our reasoning, feeling, thinking, decisions and will; thus, often called our Mind, Soul. Through God the spirit becomes live giving and animates.

For an in-depth look what affects a person’s physical, mental and spiritual functioning and make up, see SOURCES of INFLUENCE

 A Practical View of the Prevailing Religious System of Professed Christians…

(or A Practical View of Christianity).

This was written in 1797 by William Wilberforce who was a Parliament Member, friend of John Newton (‘Amazing Grace’) and a key leader of the English abolitionists.

“The disposition so prevalent in the bulk of nominal Christians (‘in name’), to form a religious system for themselves, instead of taking it from the word of God (Bible, Holy Scriptures), is strikingly observable in their scarcely admitting, except in the most vague and general sense, the doctrine of the influences of the Holy Spirit. If we look into the Scriptures for information on this particular, we learn a very different lesson. We are in them distinctly taught, that ‘of ourselves we can do nothing;’ that we are by nature children of wrath,’ and under the power of the evil spirit, our understandings being naturally dark, and our hearts averse from spiritual things; and we are directed to pray for the influences of the Holy Spirit to enlighten our understandings, to dissipate our prejudices, to purify our corrupt minds, and to renew us after the image of our heavenly Father… ‘translating us into the kingdom of His dear Son,’ (Col. 1:13), as creating us anew in Christ Jesus,’ (Eph. 2:10)… through the Spirit (Eph. 2:22).” [Chapter 3; Section 3]

 

“It is the grand, essential, practical characteristic of true Christians, that, relying on the promises to repenting sinners, of acceptance through the Redeemer, they have renounced and abjured all of masters, and have cordially and unreservedly devoted themselves to God. Christians have become the sworn enemies of sin; they will all it in no shape… they yield themselves without reserve to the reasonable service of their rightful Sovereign. They are not their own; their bodily and mental faculties, their natural and acquired endowments, their substance, their authority, their time, their influence; all these they consider as belonging to them, not for their own gratification, but as so many instruments to be consecrated to the honor and employed in the service of God. This must be their master principle to which every other must be subordinate… ti is the prerogative of Christianity ‘to bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.’ They who really feel its power, are resolved, in the language of Scripture, ‘to live no longer to themselves, but to Him that died for them…’ they know that the way on which they have entered is strait and difficult, but they know too the encouraging assurance, ‘they that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength,’ and relying on this animating declaration, they deliberately purpose that the governing maxim of their future lives shall be, ‘to do all to the glory of God’.”

[Chapter 4; Section 1]

“…The character of the bulk of nominal Christians has exhibited abundant proofs of their defectiveness in the great constituent of the true Christian character, the love of God… they find no pleasure in the service and worship of God. Their devotional acts resemble less the free-will offerings of a grateful heart, than that constrained and reluctant homage exacted by some hard master from His oppressed dependents, and paid with cold sullenness and slavish apprehension… But the grand radical defect in the practical system of these nominal Christians, is their forgetfulness of all the peculiar doctrines of the religion which they profess – the corruption of human nature; the atonement of the Savior; and the sanctifying influence of the Holy Spirit. Here then we come again to the grand distinction between the religion of Christ and that of the bulk of nominal Christians in the present day… the prevailing ignorance of the real nature of Christianity, the general forgetfulness of its grand peculiarities. These (people) wish to reform, but they know neither the real nature of their distemper nor its true remedy. They are aware, indeed, that they must ‘cease to do evil, and learn to do well;’ that they must relinquish their habits of vice, and attend more or less to the duties of religion; but having no conception of the actual malignity of the disease under which they labor, or the perfect cure which the Gospel has provided for it… The path in which they are now treading is not that wich the Gospel has provided for conducting them to true holiness… ‘How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation…’ ‘we are not our own, for we are brought with a price…’ the sufferings of Christ… ‘the Author and Finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him, endured the cross… and set down at the right hand of God…” [Chapter 4; sections 5 & 6]

“Let him then, who would be indeed a Christian, watch over his ways and over his heart with unceasing circumspection. Let him endeavor to learn, both from men and books, particularly from the lives of eminent Christians, what methods have been actually found most effectual for the conquest of every particular vice, and for improvement in every branch of holiness. Thus studying his own character, and observing the most secret workings of his own mind, and of our common nature; the knowledge which he will acquire of the human heart in general, and especially of his own, will be of the highest utility, in enabling him to avoid or to guard against the occasions of evil: and it will also tend, above all things, to the growth of humility, and to the maintenance of that sobriety of spirit and tenderness of conscience, which are eminently characteristic of the true Christian.”

― William Wilberforce, Real Christianity

Wilberforce said that ‘the bulk of professed Christians… know their duty, (yet) they will not practice it… ‘Repentance towards God, and faith towards our Lord Jesus Christ,’ was the sum of the apostolical instructions…

Complex Elements to the Whole

Many Christians in naïve chorus say ‘God is love;’ as if this is an appropriate summary of the “Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy… forgiving iniquity, transgression and sin, by no means pardoning the guilty… (Exo. 34:6-7);” Elohim, El Shaddai (God Almighty), the Highest, ‘God the Father,’ ‘Father of spirits,’ the ‘God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who show no partially nor takes bribes.’ The Lord Omnipotent; likewise, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is the Word of God and King of the Universe and all things. The point here is that God, Christ and human creation cannot be summarized properly by a few characteristics; but many must be offered to show forth a purer picture of the reality.

NAMES of GOD & Why they are Important

100 Characteristics of True Christians
  1. Faith and belief in God (John 3:18)
  2. Have no other gods but the Lord God (Exo. 20:3; Deut. 5:7)
  3. Faith and belief in Jesus Christ, the Son of God and Savior (1 John 5:5, 13; Gal. 2:20)
  4. Belief in the Holy Spirit of God (from the Father, through the Son) (John 14:17, 26)
  5. Belief in the Holy Scriptures (2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-)
  6. Belief in the Gospel and truth of Jesus Christ (1 Tim. 2:4)
  7. Belief in the resurrection of the dead and eternal salvation (2 Cor. 4:17; Heb. 6:2)
  8. Belief in the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment (Eccl 12:14; Heb. 6:2)
  9. Belief in the Judgment of ALL to come (Eccl. 12:14; John 5:28-29; Dan. 12:2; Rom. 2:6; 2Cor. 5:10; Rev.20:12; Matt. 25:31-32)
  10. Believe in evil and the Evil one – the ancient serpent called the devil, Satan (Rev. 12:9; Matt.6:13)
  11. Repentance from sin and evil (1 John 1:8)
  12. Prayer is part of life (Rev. 5:8: 1 Tim. 2:8)
  13. Fear the Lord God (Deut. 10:12; Eccl. 12:13; Matt. 10:28)
  14. Love the Lord God and the Lord Jesus Christ (Deut. 10:12)
  15. Service the Lord God and the Lord Jesus Christ (Deut. 10:12)
  16. Have the Spirit of God; seek to be filled (Eph. 5:18; Gal. 5:16; Acts 1:8; 9:17; John 14:16,17,26)
  17. Have Hope along with Faith and Love (1 Cor. 13:13; Rom. 5:4; Heb. 6:19)
  18. Worship God and Jesus Christ (Rev. 5:13) WORSHIP: beyond Praise & Thanksgiving
  19. Praise God and Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:3; Psa. 68:26)
  20. Seek to obey the commandments of the Lord (Deut. 4:2; 10:13; John 14:15; 1 John 2:3)
  21. Strive to process and practice the doctrines/teachings of Christ and His apostles (1 John 1:2:18)
  22. Submissive/Servant to the will and Spirit of God
  23. Walk in the way or light of God/Christ (Deut. 10:12; 1 John 1:4-7; 2:4)
  24. Do the works of Jesus in word and deed/action/works (John 14:12; James 2:14)
  25. Profess by word/sign/deed that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and only Savior of the world and man (Matt. 10:32; Rom. 10:9)
  26. Believe that God spoke the Creation of the Universe by the word of God through Christ (Col. 1:16-20; 2 Peter 3:5; Gen. 1)
  27. Believe in an eternal Heaven (Luke 15:7; Rev. 21:3; Isaiah 65:17)
  28. Believe in Hell and everlasting punishment (Matt. 13:42; 25:41-46; Mark 9:43; Rev. 21:8)
  29. Perseverance/Endure to the end (Matt. 24:13; Rom. 5:4)
  30. Endure sufferings/tribulation/persecution (Rom. 5:3; Acts 14:22; 2Tim. 3:12; 2Cor. 4:8; 1Peter 4:1; Matt. 5:10)
  31. Endure afflictions (2 Cor. 1:4)
  32. Seeks Baptism (Acts 2:38)
  33. Seeks Sanctification (Holiness) (1 John 2:28; 3:1-)
  34. Flees or strives to flee evil (Psa. 37:27; Amos 5:14; 1 Thes. 5:22)
  35. Welcome the gifts and fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-)
  36. Welcome, seek and need the Spirit of God (wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, etc.)
  37. Thankful (1 Thes. 5:18)
  38. Give/Charitable (Luke 6:38)
  39. Forgiving (Eph. 4:32)
  40. Have Mercy/Merciful (Matt. 5:7)
  41. Love our brethren/fellow believers (Gal. 5:22; 1 John 2:7-)
  42. Love our neighbor and seek to love all, but with proper judgments (1 John 4:8; 1 Cor. 13:1)
  43. Self is decreasing in humbleness (Phil 2:4)
  44. Humble and not living in selfish pride or for selfish ambition (Matt. 5:3; 23:12)
  45. Help bear the burdens of ours (especially orphans and the needy) (Gal. 6:2)
  46. Joyful (Gal. 5:22; Phil. 4:4)
  47. Has Peace (Rom. 5:1)
  48. Peaceful (Gal. 5:22; Rom. 12:18) generally peaceful, but of course will fight or defend as rarely required
  49. Peacemakers (Matt. 5:9)
  50. Patient/Patience (Phil. 4:6; Gal. 5:22 – some versions use longsuffering or forbearance)
  51. Kindness (Gal. 5:22; Prov. 11:17)
  52. Goodness (Gal. 5:22)
  53. Gentleness/Meek (Matt. 5:5; Gal. 5:23)
  54. Self-control/Temperance (Prov. 25:28; Gal. 5:23)
  55. Truthful/Sincere/pure in heart (Matt. 5:8)
  56. Boldness/Courage (not cowards) (Rev. 21:8)
  57. Fast (Acts 13:2-; Matt. 6:16-)
  58. Associates with other Christians (Heb. 10:25; Acts 2:46)
  59. Seeks to occasionally worship God within an assembly of believers
  60. Seeks to at least occasionally take the Lord’s Supper/Communion (1 Cor. 11:23-)
  61. Seeks wisdom (Isaiah 11:2)
  62. Seeks knowledge (Isa. 11:2)
  63. Seeks understanding (Isa. 11:2)
  64. Reads the Bible (at least more than rarely) (2 Tim. 3:16; Psa. 119:105)
  65. Mourn for the weak and lost (Matt. 5:4)
  66. Just/Fair/hunger and thirst for Righteousness (Matt. 5:6)
  67. Have gifts of the Spirit (prophecy, knowledge, tongues, etc.) (1 Cor. 12:7-; 13:9-)
  68. Seek to at least occasionally make other discipline or converts to Christianity (Matt. 28:19)
  69. Seek to teach or train up their children in the way of the Lord (Deut. 4:9; Prov. 22:6)
  70. Upon maturity believe that ‘every knee will bow before God and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is the Lord of all’ (Rom. 14:11; Phil. 2:10; Isa. 45:23)
  71. Upon maturity believe in the laying on of hands in proper manner and by proven Christians (Heb. 6:2; 1Tim. 5:22)
  72. Upon maturity believe in the ‘lifting of hands’ in praise/worship/prayer (1 Tim. 2:8; Psa. 134:2)
  73. Upon maturity will praise God within a congregation or assembly of people (Psa. 68:26; 107:32)
  74. Upon maturity will give thanks to God in an assembly/before others (Psa. 35:18)
  75. They hold on to faith and a good conscience (1 Tim. 1:19)
  76. Upon maturity they understand that through men and women often have the same talents; they are many differences naturally and spiritually and even in being male, female, husband, wife, father or mother
  77. Upon maturity understand the Lord is the Lord of the Sabbath, and that Christians have practiced meeting on Sunday, the resurrection day; but that they are not under a law to any day
  78. Upon maturity believe in the prophets (Heb. 1:1)
  79. Do not continue in willful sinning (Heb. 10:26)
  80. Do not live such as to act vile or wicked (Rev. 21:8)
  81. Upon maturity they are not lovers of money (1 Tim. 3:3; Matt. 6:24)
  82. Are not given over to strong drink or drunkenness (1 Cor. 6:10)
  83. Are not given over to live as murderers (Exo. 20:13; Rev. 21:8; Deut. 5:17)
  84. Are not given over to be an adulterer (Exo. 20:14; 1 Cor. 6:9; Deut. 5:18)
  85. Are not given over to live in sexually immorally (1 Cor. 6:9; Rev. 21:8)
  86. Are not given over to live in fornication (1 Cor. 6:9; Rom. 1:29)
  87. Are not given over to live as homosexuals (Lev. 18:22; 1 Cor. 6:10; Rom. 1:26-; 1Tim. 1:10)
  88. Are not given over to stealing/thievery (Exo. 20:15; Deut. 5:19; 1 Cor. 6:9)
  89. Are not given over to lying/slandering/false testimony (Exo. 20:16; 1 Cor. 6:10)
  90. Do not need idols or practice idolatry (Exo. 20:4)
  91. Do not misuse the name of the Lord in vanity (Exo. 20:7)
  92. Do not covet/envy/lust over another’s property (Rom. 1:28; Exo. 20:17; Deut. 5:21)
  93. Are not given over to continual pride or boasting (Rom. 1:28)
  94. Are not disrespectful or disobedient to their parents according to reason (Rom. 1:30)
  95. Are not given over to lusting for pleasures
  96. Have a testimony (Rev. 12:11)
  97. Overcome by the blood/sacrifice of the Lamb Jesus Christ and through the Spirit of the Lord (Rev. 12:11)
  98. Do not love their lives more than Jesus Christ (Rev. 12:11)
  99. Are not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ (Rom. 1:16)
  100. Are witnesses for Jesus Christ (Luke 12:8-9; 2 Tim. 1:8; Acts 1:8)

 

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