What is Christianity?
Fast Facts on Christianity
Origins of Christianity
Christianity has its origins in the Old Testament, which prophesied hundreds of times of a Coming Redeemer or Messiah. Shortly after the death and resurrection of Jesus were His followers first called Christians.
Basic Christian Beliefs
Christians believe in one God – the God of the Old and New Testaments – who expresses Himself as Father, Son (Jesus Christ), and the Holy Spirit. They believe the Bible is the inspired, all-sufficient Word of God (1 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21). It teaches all have sinned and must be reconciled to God (Romans 3:23; 2 Corinthians 5:19-21). This reconciliation takes place through faith in Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son, whom He sent to take the punishment for the sins of the world (John 3:16; 1 John 2:2; 1 Timothy 1:15). One day the wicked and the righteous (who are righteous only by their faith in Christ) will be resurrected and will face judgment. The wicked will be judged for their works and sentenced to the lake of fire; the works of the righteous will be judged to determine the extent of their reward for their faithfulness.
The Christian Holy Book
The Bible (66 books including the old testament and new testament).
Who Jesus Is to the Christians
Jesus is the promised Redeemer, “the way, the truth and the life” (John 14:6). He is central to the Christian faith. Jesus came the first time to bring salvation; He will come again to bring judgment (Matthew 25:31-46).
How Many Christians are there?
About 2 billion (including all denominations)
Christian Teachings on Salvation
Salvation is by faith through grace (Ephesians 2:8-9; Galatians 2:16). Those who trust Jesus as Savior and Lord will be united with Him eternally at death; those who deny Him will be eternally separated from God in hell (1 John 5:11-12).
The Christian Path to Accept Jesus Christ as Savior
Who is Jesus?
More than likely, you’ve heard the words of Jesus throughout your life. You’ve probably sung Christmas songs about Him, and you’ve heard Bible stories about Him. The concept of Jesus gives us warm fuzzies. You’ve probably even heard people say – or maybe even said yourself – “He was a great teacher, and we all need to model ourselves after Him.” But Jesus is much more than a storybook character, much more than a good teacher, much more than a good example to us. He is Emmanuel, God among us. As C.S. Lewis wrote in Mere Christianity:
“I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: “I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.” That is the one thing we must not say. A man who said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.”
Or in the words of the Bible itself:
In Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form (Colossians 2:9)
He [Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:15-16)
But Is the Bible True?
It’s pretty tough to believe that Jesus is who He claimed to be if you don’t even believe that the whole Bible is true. But the Bible is, in fact, the single most corroborated work of antiquity. The fact that it has been carefully translated throughout the centuries continues to be affirmed as archeologists discover ancient manuscripts. Secular historians confirm its historical accuracy. And scores of fulfilled prophecies confirm its source could only be God Himself. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, instruction, rebuking and training in righteousness. (2 Timothy 3:16) For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. (2 Peter 1:21) Speaking of scores of fulfilled prophecies, Jesus Himself fulfilled 324 Old Testament prophecies. To help us get our heads around the statistical significance of all that, let’s play a game of visualization. Imagine that Jesus only fulfilled, say, eight prophecies. That alone is akin to covering Texas with 2 feet of quarters and asking a blindfolded person to pick out a marked one on the first try. So does the evidence show that the Bible and Jesus Himself are authentic? I’d put my money on it.
What Does That Mean for Me?
That’s a valid question. Does Jesus want you to acknowledge Him as a great teacher and a good moral example? Absolutely. Does Jesus want you to live out His example on the earth? You bet. But He wants more from you – and still, somehow, less. See, the more that He wants is your complete surrender to Him. He wants you to receive Him, to believe in His name and to become His child.
Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God. (John 1:12)
But He asks less of you than you would expect. Because in the eyes of the world, we have to work our way to heaven. But by God’s grace, Jesus completed the work of our salvation on the cross. The good works you accomplish as His child are attempts to live out His love through your life. That’s why the gospel is such good news. For it is by grace we are saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9) Someday you will face judgment . . . . . . just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment. (Hebrews 9:27) . . . and you will realize, on that day, that what you have done with Jesus matters. Are you ready to face Him as Judge or as Savior and Lord? Let today be the day of salvation.