What Does it Mean to be a Christian?

In 1891 a Christian weekly magazine mailed letters to America’s most prominent Christian authors and ministers asking one question:

What is it to be a Christian?

Many of the replies from ministers and church elders spoke about adhering to New Testament doctrines. Some replied that being a Christian meant following the example set by the Divine Master.

A famous Unitarian pastor answered that to be a Christian was “to do the will of my father who is in heaven.”

Of course, Isabella was one of the Christian authors who received the letter.

Photograph of Isabella Alden in profile.
Isabella Alden, about 1900.

Here is her answer, which was printed in newspapers across the country on Sunday, March 20, 1892:

“To be a Christian is to love the Lord Jesus Christ so much that I shall desire to have him reign supreme in my heart.”

What do you think of Isabella’s answer?

How would you answer the question?

One thought on “What Does it Mean to be a Christian?

  1. Her answer is spot on!

    To be a Christian is to take up your cross and follow Him wherever He may lead.

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