If you abide in my word, you are my disciples indeed. The disciples were … called christians.
John 8, 31; Acts 11, 26.
There is a form of Christendom that is very fashionable; it speaks only of love of one’s neighbor and of the poor, of mutual aid and of solidarity. Now true Christianity that has resulted from the teaching of Christ is much more than that. It certainly insists on the value of love and generosity, but only because they are motivated by the love that is in God Himself and which surpasses human thought.
The Bible tells us that God created man in innocence and in a relationship with Himself. But because God’s commandments were disregarded, man was expelled from the place of happiness where he first dwelt and found himself alone, guilty and far from God.
However, in His love God intervened. For whoever repents, acknowledging his estrangement from God and maybe his rebellion against Him, God has prepared a means of salvation: Jesus Christ, who came to earth, where He lived as a Man, though He is God, the Creator. After His childhood, adolescence and adulthood, after working untiringly for man’s good, after His perfect life, He died through crucifixion to take away the sins of all who believe. The One truly innocent Man died for the guilty.
Being a Christian is therefore believing the God revealed by Jesus Christ, repenting and accepting His pardon. True Christianity re-establishes the relationship between God and man and motivates those reconciled with their Creator to praise Him, love Him for their part and to devote themselves to others without counting on or hoping for anything in exchange.