Do you really know what Christian Character is all about?
"Character is what you are in the dark." D.L. Moody
Do you want to know? Real, authentic Christian character is formed by our commitment to Christ. When we surrender to Christ and allow His piercing work to grow and enrich us, so that the Spirit flows. Our spiritual discipline, motives, obedience, and persevering faith will be the keys! All it takes is to be in love with Christ. Seek His presence, grow in your discipleship and be persistent in your prayers and in so doing you will be building your Character too.
When we say we follow Christ, do our actions show that we do; are we in fact being Christ-like? Or is something else happening in our life and relationships? Perhaps, what we think we are like is not how we come across. Maybe, other Christians see us as being reprehensible before our Lord and to others around us! Or worse we are producing the "works of the flesh" to all those around us, family, friends, Christians and non-Christians alike (Gal. 5). Being pretenders of the faith, giving a show, but having no real substance behind us is extremely destructive to the Body of Christ and the reputation of our Lord!
This article also serves as the introduction to our Bible Study series on Character!
Real, authentic Christian character is formed when you surrender to Christ and allow His piercing work to grow and enrich you, so that the Spirit flows. Our spiritual discipline, motives, obedience, and persevering faith will be the keys! All it takes is to be in love with Christ. Seek His presence and be persistent in your prayers.
We are called to be careful how we live. People will be watching us wherever we go; how we are, and what we are will be scrutinized. Therefore, we must strive to do our best, so our Lord is represented with excellence through us.
Character is a spiritual Fruit that is built from our real, godly relationship and commitment to Christ as LORD. It is the fiber of our moral center that stretches throughout our being, embracing and holding together our relationships when it is sealed as a choice and commitment, and not just a feeling or a personality. Character synergistically combines with the Fruit of the Spirit and the seventy or so other characters of our Lord to promote our ability to relate and grow in our relations, to better others as well as ourselves. Let us take a quick look at the main characters that all flow from God's love to us and the work of the Sprit by the way of the Fruit of the Spirit.
Character is fueled by the power of the Spirit empowering us so we can model the character of Christ! The demands for people of character are more needed then ever before. Our culture does not value it, yet it insists on it. Just watch the news and see how the reporters attack people with no character, even though they may not have it themselves.
As mature Christians, we must come to the point that we allow the search and conviction of the Holy Spirit upon our lives to the very core of our souls (2 Cor. 13:5)! Once this happens, the result will be more faith and more use to Christ. The result for your church will be more focus upon His precepts and increased prayer, which will bring an outpouring of the Spirit and renewal!
Virtue is the application of being good from both the conscious will to do what is right from God's revealed Word and from personal responsibility. It encompasses integrity, honesty, compassion, and endearment and this is the quintessence of what biblical Character (that is right standards, strength, courage, modesty, and purity all done in excellence) is to be. We acquire Virtue by our faith, our obedience to Christ, being persistent in Him, and clothing ourselves in Him.
Make sure you have a godly disposition! Do people treat you unfairly? Have you ever wondered why? Well, we live in a fallen world, and we are all filled with sin. Sin affects our relationships and personality, the way we treat people, and the way they treat us.
Here is a chart that lists two sets of Fruit and ways of living. One side represents Christ's redemptive work that we comply to continue by being grateful, pursuing His Grace and applying His Fruit into our daily lives. The other side represents the corruption of sin, the old self that we are called to get rid of.
Biblical curriculums to help us in knowing and developing Character
These can be used as personal devotionals, small group studies, Bible studies, Christian education, or sermon helps. (These curriculums can even be used in public education; just omit the Scriptural references and make them available when students ask.)
It is imperative that when we say we are a follower of Christ, our character and behaviors reflect Him and His call to us to the best of our abilities which includes our temperament. If we are in leadership, this is even more imperative! We demonstrate Character and integrity when we do what we say and act out what we believe; if not, we are hypocrites, and woe to us for being one (Matt. 23)!
Character is the springboard from which all we do and say in life comes. Developing Biblical character in the face of our daily life and even in adversity is essential and the proof text that we have a growing relationship with Christ!
Is Good Character In You?