What Makes a Christian Church Christian?

Journal of Discourses 18:44; “If we can find a church that has the gifts and the signs spoken of by the New Testament, we can find true Christian Church; but if we can’t find such, we have no reason to believe that there is such a Church on the earth. “But,” says one, “we call ourselves Christians.” That is a very easy matter; but calling yourselves Christians or Christian churches does not make you such.” – Orson Pratt, Salt Lake City, July 11, 1875

2 Timothy 2:15-16; “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 16 But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.”

There are a few basics that all Christians can agree upon to answer this all important question even when we belong to various denominations. Those basics are:

Mankind is separated from God because of original sin. We have inherited a sin nature and are in need of a redeemer to make us righteous before God. Because we cannot fulfill this on our own we need a Savior.

That Savior is God’s Only Begotten Son, Jesus.

Jesus is God incarnate.

Jesus died on the cross for our sin.

Jesus was resurrected on the third day and because of this we have eternal life with God because we believe in Him.

As Christians we are saved by grace through faith and not works lest anyone should boast – Ephesians 2:8-9.

1 John chapters 3-4 were a shock to me when I discovered them after leaving Mormonism. They convicted me of the sin I had lived in for thirty years. All that time I had a feud swelling inside my heart. I hated Christians yet loved to be around them because of their demeanor. I’ve not found a good way to articulate just how much I hated anyone who wasn’t Mormon and I’ve been a Christian going on twenty years now.

1 John 3:7 says; “Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.” When I read this lovely verse it tells me the LDS Church has no proof that Christians aren’t really Christians.

And then in 1 John 3:14-15 we find that if we don’t love the brethren then we “abideth in death”. And finally as if to solidify the message we are to love other Christians in 1 John 4:8; “He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.” 

My heart sinks to my toes each time I read that. My people do not know God. I’ve known this for a long time but oh, how sad it is that they live this lie.