Sun, 14 January 2018
How can you identify a Christian? What is the chief characteristic of the Christian?
A cross necklace has been used by many across the years to identify as a Christian; however, as you know, for many it has little to no significance whatsoever. It certainly doesn’t make one a Christian.
More recently there’s been a trend in Christian tattoos. Many devout young believers have inked themselves to say, as permanently as they know how, I am a follower of Jesus.
A less painful and permanent way that some people use is a bumper sticker. But be careful with that! I heard about a lady who was impatiently driving down a busy street. She became infuriated when the car in front of her slowed to a stop at a yellow light instead of speeding through. This, of course, delayed her. Furious at being delayed, she sounded her horn and began waving her fists in a disgraceful exhibition of a road rage. Before she could move off, she felt a tap on her window. It was a police officer who ordered her to step out of the car. He then asked her to come down to the station where she was searched, fingerprinted, photographed, and put in a cell.
A couple of hours later, after vehicle checks had been carried out, she was told that she could collect her valuables and that she was being released without charge.
The woman was extremely indignant at her arrest and demanded an apology.
The officer responsible explained the reason for the mistake. "You see, ma’am, I pulled up behind your car while you were blowing your horn and loudly cursing the driver in front of you. Then I noticed the ‘Honk if you love Jesus’ bumper sticker, the Christian fish emblem on the trunk, and the ‘Choose Life’ license plate. Naturally, I assumed that you had stolen the car."
While cross necklaces, tattoos, and bumper stickers all may have their place, none of these is the fool-proof evidence of a true Christian. What is that distinguishing trait? Jesus tells us in our passage today.
The Final Word
“The Chief Characteristic of the Christian”