Have you ever thought to yourself, "Am I really a Christian?" or "Am I really saved and going to Heaven?" Perhaps you have sat in the pews for as long as you can remember and you have known nothing else. Maybe you converted to Christianity later in life and had a learning so large, you felt like you never would overcome. Regardless, you are now sitting down with you Bible in hand, and imposter syndrome races through your veins; making you question whether or not you are who you think you are.
Before we look at identifying the ways in which one can tell if they are in fact a Christian, let's first and foremost work toward an understanding of what a Christian is. Very simply, a Christian is a believer in Jesus Christ as the Son of God and the profession and following of His teachings. Christians believe in the accuracy and Divine authorship of both the Old and New Testament of the Bible and are self-identified by the Apostle's Creed: "I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth;
and in Jesus Christ, His only Son Our Lord, Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into Hell; the third day He rose again from the dead;
He ascended into Heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God, the Father almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting."
Now, salvation is, in fact, the belief in Jesus and the acknowledgement that He came to Earth and died for one's sins and only them are we made right with God, not by our own works but by the sacrifice of God's one and only perfect Son. In this we, as Christians, also acknowledge that through this and this alone, we are granted eternity in Heaven with the Father. Your brain might be screaming by now (and rightfully so) due all this information and you might be questioning even more so, whether or not you are a Christian; after all, you have never even heard the term "Apostle's Creed". Fear not! Now that we know what a Christian is and how we are saved, we can look at some identifying scripture and ways you can know whether or not you are in fact saved.
The first way in which you can identify whether or not you are a Christian is whether you believe the theology as a whole. 1 John 5:11-12 lays out Christian theology very simply when it says, "And this is what God has testified: He has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have God’s Son does not have life." If you can say truthfully to yourself and others that you believe in your heart that this statement is true, you are in agreement with Christian theology.
The next way to help you identify whether or not you are a Christian is in how you believe in loving others. We will continue our discovery in 1 John 3:14 where it states, "If we love our brothers and sisters who are believers, it proves that we have passed from death to life. But a person who has no love is still dead." John is pretty clear here: we act out our Christian faith by the way we love others. He isn't saying that some of our Christian brothers and sisters will not annoy us or cause conflict or simply just be people with don't like. People are people and personalities don't always mesh. What John is saying, is that if we are true Christians that are living out a Christian life, we are going to love our Christian brothers and sisters despite themselves and how they may at times make us feel. 1 Peter 4:8 says, "Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins."Jesus loved us despite ourselves and He covered our sins in His blood; we as Christians should be following His example to do the same.
Finally, in order to test whether or not we are Christians, let's look at our sin. As Christians, we learn that Jesus's sacrifice provided through grace, covers are sin in the eyes of the Father. This does not mean, however, that we should go about needlessly sinning for the sake of being saved. Romans 6:1-2 lays it out for us: "Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it?" If we are true believers in the teaching of Jesus Christ, we should be so filled with gratitude from His sacrifice, that we should actively seek to not sin. This does not mean that we won't ever do so, we are imperfect humans and sin is a part of that; but, as Christians we strive to live a life that continues to profess the life and teaching of Jesus to the world, and in that we must strive to emulate Him in all we do.
So there you have it, the ways in which you can test your belief in Christianity and if you are indeed saved. It is important to note, however, that this is not a framework of things you must do in order to be saved; rather, these are signs in which prove that your salvation through God's Grace and the sacrifice of Jesus Christ has really taken hold of your life and is producing good fruit. As you look on into your life as a Christian, remember to always ask yourself: "Am I loving God? Am I loving and appreciating His commands for me? Am I loving others that He has placed before me?" You will be sure to see your Christian life unfold before your very eyes.