How can I become more Christlike (Christ-like)?

You become like the people you spend the most time with. If you want to become more like Christ, start by spending time with Him. Talk to Him in prayer. Read His Word. Spend time with others who live like Him. When you do this, you will know Him better and become more like Him, making you more confident in your faith.

As we grow more like Christ, we are conformed into His image. We are transformed in Christ's image by the renewing of our minds: "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect" (Romans 12:2). A great way to renew our minds is to meditate on God's written Word, the Bible (Psalm 1:1–3; Romans 10:17) and submit to His living Word, Jesus (John 1:1). We can ask God to make His Word come alive to us: "Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law" (Psalm 119:18). When we spend time in God's Word and in prayer with Him, we come to know His voice: "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand" (John 10:27–28).

A sign of becoming more like Christ is growing in spiritual maturity, becoming more solidly grounded in our faith. The Apostle Paul discusses this concept in Ephesians 4:11–16. He spoke about God's provision in equipping people for ministry and "for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love" (Ephesians 4:12–16; see also Ephesians 4:17–24; 2 Peter 3:17–18). Making the investment to become more like Christ prevents us from being spiritually deceived or led astray by false doctrine.

Essentially, as we make the decision to invest in growing in our knowledge of Christ, we realize that we become more like Christ by giving up our own lives for the sake of Him. In the words of John the Baptist, "He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30). In the book of Luke, Jesus outlines the necessary sacrifice we must make to become like Christ: "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it" (Luke 9:23–24; see also Galatians 2:20). We are to put to death our old sin nature for the sake of obedience to Christ.

Becoming like Christ requires the pursuit of the knowledge of God and active obedience to His commands and instructions to us (James 1:22). When we deny ourselves of the things that keep us from being like Christ, we have space in our hearts and lives to become like Him. Ultimately, becoming more like Christ is a work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. When we are saved, the Holy Spirit takes up residence in our hearts and begins to conform us to the image of Christ (Romans 8:29–30). The process lasts a lifetime and is completed when we are with Jesus in heaven. Paul wrote in Philippians 2:12–13, "Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure." In Philippians 1:6 he said, "And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ."

Related Truth:

What can I do to become more like Christ?

What does it mean to follow Christ?

How important is spiritual growth in Christian life?

How can I increase in spiritual maturity?

How can I come to really know God?

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