Do You Know?

The Nominal Christian

There are many, many nominal Christians in the world today.  They can be found in any number of churches amidst a vast array of denominations.  The nominal Christian calls himself a Christian, may even be religious, but does what he wants rather than the Will of God.  He disdains any real spiritual progress because that would demand denying self and he does not like that at all.

Question: Are you a nominal Christian?

The term nominal means, “in name only.”  This indicates a position without power or attributes that should go along with that position.  An example would be a king who is considered a ruler, but who quite obviously lacks authority to make or enforce laws over his own countrymen thus proving himself to be only a, nominal ruler after all.

Thus, a nominal Christian can be defined as one who may be religious, but not godly.

Claiming allegiance to God, but manifesting no power as the sons of God. 

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: John 1:12 

Essentially, he is one who does not really believe that the Lord should be the Lord of his or her life.  He would actually rather share the Lordship over his life with the Lord Himself!

Matthew 7:21-23

Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Who is a nominal Christian?

One who places a higher value on his personal opinion and experience rather than on the Word of God. A nominal Christian is one who bends with the wind and compromises the truth of Jesus at the slightest threat of persecution.  One who loves money and respects wealth and wealthy people more than the children of God.  He likes comfort and not the cross. He is definitely not like Moses, who is one of the heroes of true faith and obedience.

About Moses the Scripture records the following:

Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward. - Hebrews 11:26 

A nominal Christian believes and propagates the heinous lie of the Devil that, “Too much heavenly mindedness will do no earthly good.”

The Bible says however to the true believer,

But godliness with contentment is great gain. - 1 Timothy 6:6

 and  again,

 Mark 10:29, 30, 
And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s,

But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.

Can you honestly say that you are such a person, dear reader?  If not then take heed and repent quickly or the Lord will separate you into the chaff corner and not with the wheat.

Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire. - Matthew 3:12 

None of us should be charged by the Lord, on that Day

  with being a nominal Christian.

A nominal Christian hates doctrine but loves, “fellowship.”  Therein is the big contradiction.

Please understand the following truth which is very, very important:

One cannot have true spiritual fellowship without agreeing on true biblical doctrine.

There is no real unity without love of the Truth first.

 What is Truth? Jesus is the Truth. The only Truth. His Word is Truth.  His every command is Truth. His doctrine is therefore Truth.

 When a person who claimes to be a child of God, begins to impose his or her own opinions on any decision that needs to be made, even if those personal views are diametrically opposed to the clear and plain teaching of Holy Scripture, then that person without doubt proves that he or she is a nominal Christian.

 Once again, we must remember a most important truth:

 There are no enemies of God in Heaven.  No one would argue over that.  Yet, there are people in Christian circles today who think that they can oppose God down here below with regards to His commandments and still be found with Him in Heaven one day.

 Only God’s friends will be with Him for all Eternity. No one would argue over that either.  Yet, nominal Christians fail to recognize that Jesus said we can be His friends only if we do what He says.

 John 15:14  states, “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.”

When a true Christian stands up for the Truth of Christ, he will undergo trouble from the world and even from other Nominal Christians That should not be surprising because the Nominal Christian will very often takes sides with the world.

2 Timothy 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

The Nominal Christian would squirm when he hears that statement.  He would rather be a people pleaser than a God pleaser. He would rather save face than admit he is wrong when is confronted with the Truth of God.

Are you a nominal Christian?

If your outlook is not radically different from the world’s, if people cannot see you as “strange” because you really are sold out to Jesus Christ, then you are a nominal Christian.

1 Peter 4:4,  Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:

Nominal believer, you had better make a serious inquiry into how to become born again or how to return to the Lord and away from your backslidings.

The biggest and most tragic aspect of the Nominal Christian’s thinking is that he thinks that he is truly good and accepted with the Lord.

Here’s what the Lord says about that,

 Revelation 3:1c ,  I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.

A nominal Christian therefore may be religious, read the Bible and pray at set times or he may do it at random times and on certain occasions.  He may be a philanthropist.

He may be a, “model citizen” in the eyes of society, one who has a very good work ethic and is basically a moral person. 

Yet, he has no life of the Risen Savior within Him.  He reacts to life out of his own experience and intellect, and not by faith in the solid Truth of God’s Word. 

The True Christian,

on the other hand is not perfect, but definitely on the pathway to perfection.  The true Christian will love the Lord more than life itself.

Psalms 63:3
Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee.

He would lay aside his own opinions and persuasions of various sorts and become teachable as a little child before God.

Psalm 131: 1, 2
LORD, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty: neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me.

Surely I have behaved and quieted myself, as a child that is weaned of his mother: my soul is even as a weaned child.

The True Believer, unlike the nominal Christian, desires spiritual maturity instead of being worldly and getting along with this world’s way of looking at things and participating in worldly amusements and activities and conversations.

Though he would not condemn or look down on people of low degree, he would not seek the fellowship of nominal believers. He cannot stand the empty chitter-chatter of proud and worldly men and women. He will avoid those who love to talk about things that are not spiritual.

Are you a nominal Christian or a True Christian? For all your, “Christian” talk, does your actual thought life still sound similar to what has been described above about the nominal Christian?

May God help you, even now to see the seriousness of the matter and yield your life, your desires and affections to Him.  Then He will have no hindrance from you as He begins to conform you truly to the image of His Beloved Son, our Lord  and Savior Jesus Christ.

 Thus, instead of being counted with the many who are Nominal Christians and on their way to hell, you will be inherit Eternal Life because you did His Will and not your own.

 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Matthew 7:21