Why should you be different for Jesus? Joining the company of those that are different for Christ is a major decision to take and a wise one too. A person that is different for the Lord is treasured in God’s kingdom. This post gives the reasons why you should be different for Jesus Christ.
Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus – Acts 4:13 (NKJV)
Difference is the mark of Christ. He came and made a difference in the world and anyone who is His follower is expected to make a difference too, and this is possible by being first different. The elders of Israel in Acts 4:13 noticed the difference in Peter and John and realized that they had been with Jesus. You can’t truly walk with Christ and not be different! But why should you really be different?
Reasons to be different
There are five basic reasons to be different for Christ
It is commanded by God.
God commanded in Leviticus 11:44 that you should be holy for He is holy. And Peter in 1 Peter 1:15-16 recounts this command that you should be holy in all your conduct because it is written, “be holy for I am holy. Holiness connotes difference. God is holy and does not expect anything short of it from His children. Holiness enables you to be different in all your conduct. The way you think, talk and act will be different from the world’s way of thinking, talking or acting if you are holy.
God commands same in 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 when He said we should not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. There is no agreement between the temple of God and idols. That’s why He says that you should come out from among them and be different. A follower of Christ MUST be different from the world.
For praise unto God
When you are different for Jesus your light shines so bright that men see your works and glorify God (Matthew 5:16). Being different for God makes you a light in the midst of darkness. And wherever there is light darkness disappears. Light enables people to move about without stumbling. Therefore anyone who is light is a blessing that provokes people to praise God.
When Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego remained different for God, refusing to bow to the gold image, king Nebuchadnezzar got very angry and threw them into the burning fiery furnace. But when they came out unhurt with no smell of fire upon them, the same king praised God (Daniel 3). Being different for Christ gives glory to God.
Distinguishes you as a child of God
A person who is different for the sake of Christ will obviously be known as a child of God. Matthew 7:16, 20 tell us that you know a person by his fruits. The way someone conducts himself will give you a good description of who he is. Children of God are known by the way they are different from the world.
One major characteristic of believers is the divine ability to love like Christ loves. Jesus said in John 13:35 that people will know that you are His disciple if you have love for others. Therefore when you love people, especially fellow believers like Jesus loves, you will be distinguished as a child of God.
Draws people to God
One good and impactful way of winning souls for God is by being different for Christ. Your way of life will make people want what you have, that is Jesus. They see how peaceful you are, the joy of the Lord you possess, how you respond to and scale through challenges and how things don’t bother you, and they desire what you have so that they can enjoy what you are enjoying.
Peter admonishes wives of unbelievers in 1 Peter 3:1-4 to win their husbands over to Christ by their conduct, that they should adorn themselves with gentle and quiet spirit which is precious in the sight of God.
As a model of Christ
Paul was a great model of Christ. In 1 Corinthians 11:1, he admonished the Corinthians to imitate him as he imitates Christ. Also, in Ephesians 5:1-2, Paul charges us to imitate God as children and walk in the footsteps of Christ. Christians who are really different for the Lord live for people a true picture of Christ. When people see them, they see Jesus; they are true pictures of what these people have read or heard about Christ.
The scriptures talked about Dorcas as a good follower of Christ. Surely, there must have been many believers who died before Dorcas (Acts 9:36-43), but her conduct before her death won’t let the saints let her go at that time. The disciples saw her as treasure that would not be released to death at that time. Obviously, she was different. Her good works and charitable deeds were speaking for her. The scripture called her a disciple of Christ, rightly so because she was walking in love towards the brethren.
Are you a child of God? If so, you are expected to be different. Being different for the Lord is part of your nature. When you are not different, then you are living in carnality (1 Corinthians 3:3)
Ngozi Nwoke is a teacher, speaker, counselor and author of “Peace Money Can’t Buy” and “The Man Jesus: What You Need to Know About Christ”. She has a passion to teach people how to enjoy peace, God’s love, and Christian living for a more fulfilling life. Want a more fulfilling life?