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Am I Really a Christian?

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  262 ratings  ·  44 reviews
Are you really a Christian?

You may think you are, but you may not be. After all, Jesus himself said that some people will do seemingly "Christian" things in his name but will not truly know him. Or maybe you know you are not a Christian and you wonder what it really means to be one.

To be sure, however, there is clarity from God's perspective. He is not confused about who d
Paperback, 160 pages
Published June 7th 2011 by Crossway Books
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Average rating 4.23  · 
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Eric Durso
Sep 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Get a stash to give away.
Kimberly Bower MLIS (gladeslibrarian)
If you don't want to be a Christian this book is not for you. Put it down. If you believe you are a Christian and are satisfied with your grasp of the doctrine of salvation, the role of faith in salvation, personal assurance of salvation and the manner in which your life lines up with your belief system, this book has nothing to offer you. Walk away. There is danger, however, in thinking you are past the point of need for self-examination or for peer-accountability regarding the direction of you ...more
Reena Jacobs
Jul 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who believes he/she is a Christian
Expect my full review August 22, 2011 on Ramblings of an Amateur Writer:

One thing I want to emphasize is this book is not aimed at non-Christians. It’s not meant to convert the non-believer or convince the non-believer that Christianity is the only way. Instead, it focuses on individuals who claim to be Christian and helps those individuals examine their lives, so they don’t miss the boat.

Much of what Mr. McKinley said, I knew to be true. It’s clearly laid out in the bible
Jonathan Klimek
Dec 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An excellent resource to work through with new believers and those struggling with assurance. It has been a blessing for our Foundation's Ministry. ...more
Sep 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Earlier this summer I was in a mall in Worcester, Massachusetts when I saw a shocking advertisement from a health care facility. It said “Pride kills thousands of men each year.”

I can attest to that statement. At my dad’s funeral, someone came up to me and told me that my dad might have been suffering from a risky medical condition but that he did not want to get treated or tell anyone of the situation. It was due to pride. He ended up dying alone, separated from his family and any friends he mi
Mandy J. Hoffman
Aug 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing

Convicting. Encouraging. Challenging.

I always approach books on this topic with a bit of anxiety - wondering if I will walk away with more questions than when I begun. However, this book ranks first in the several I have read on this topic because it not only answered all my questions, but did so with great clarity. McKinley does not beat around the bush and present pages of lengthy explanation, rather he takes you back to Scripture for the answers. This book is a 140 page handbook for
Pascal Denault
Apr 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Every chapter is introduced by an illustration. The content of the 9 chapters is always outlined in a easy to grasp manner. The doctrine is faithful to the Scripture and presented in a practical way. I recommend it
Andy Huette
Jun 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is an easy-to-read book, with great illustrations and no-nonsense teaching about the marks of being a Christian. It helpfully explained key passages about examining the fruit of one's faith and is a helpful exhortation for believers as well as a bible-filled rubric for non-believers to consider what true faith looks like. My only request would be that slightly more time be spent in chapter 8 on assurance of salvation. After the first seven chapters, just about anyone could be doubting the v ...more
Feb 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Every job or hobby has a foundation that has to be built to do the job or hobby, or to be learned before moving to a more advanced skill set. The Christian walk is the same way. There is some foundational truths that we need to be reminded of regularly to mature as believers. This book is a back to basics kind of book. It is a spiritual “spring training” that reminds us, as Christians, what it means at the foundational level to be a Christian. Read it; on your own, with your spouse, in a group, ...more
Jun 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Grab a friend and read together. This book was convicting, challenging, and encouraging for me. The reflection questions and truths at the end of every chapter are so good for the soul. This helpfully outlines the heart a Christian must have, and finishes off in classic 9Marks style by wrapping up the book with the importance that attending a gospel-preaching local church has to do with being a Christian!

Would highly recommend for anyone questioning their faith or anyone sure of it as well.
Oct 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Helpful framework to think through

Mike McKinley walks the reader through five ways a person can know whether or not they are a Christian. I found it helpful and challenging. Recommended to anyone wanting to learn more about what it truly means to be a Christian.
John Collier
Sep 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
A couple of months ago, I had the opportunity to attend a conference where Mike McKinley was one of the speakers. I enjoyed his presentations and sermons immensely and was fortunate enough to meet him and trade a few emails. I committed at that conference to buy both the books he has written and review them for you. Am I Really a Christian? (2011, Crossway) is really the second of his books. I will post a review of the other in a few weeks.

I am more conflicted over this book than I have been ove
Jul 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone! all Christians
Recommended to Jenna by: Net Galley
When I saw the book’s title “Am I Really a Christian?”, my first reaction was “I am really sure of my salvation, so this book is not really for me”. However, choosing among the titles, I ended up picking this one with the thought “this will be an easy read because I’m sure it all talks about basic Christianity” in mind.
However, now, after reading the book, I am enrichly blessed and I’ve been a Christian for 6 years and I am still continually amazed at how God shows He loves me. He always, alw
Jul 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
Are you really a Christian? If you believe you are, you might be bothered that anyone would even ask. I mean, of course you are, right? How dare anyone question that?

So it’s likely to be a little off-putting to some when Mike McKinley begins the introduction to his book, Am I Really a Christian? by making this statement: “This is a book aimed at convincing you that you may not be a Christian” (he even acknowledges he’s kind of a jerk…). McKinley has looked out over the landscape of Christianity
Jul 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
For this review I would like to give a tad bit of history of myself so that way you can better understand the reason I chose this book to review.

When I saw this book through NetGalley it really caught my eye. Since the age of 10 when I was adopted by my parents, I have been hearing that for you to become a Christian you must accept Christ into your heart and save you. Nearly 23 years later I decided to ask Christ into my heart. The reason being, I was in Sunday school and we were talking about h
Jennifer Radtke
Feb 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book has been calling to me from my bookshelf ever since it came in the mail from LIFE.

I think putting it in the list of reading had it come out at the perfect time. It's so wonderful when God does those things for us. When I picked up the book I saw the small print that there's a foreword by Kirk Cameron. Does anyone else still see his teen poster hanging on your wall when you hear his name, or is it just me?

Looking at the Table of Contents really made it a wonderful follow up to Reason to
Apr 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Matthew 7:21-23 says, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

This is THE scariest passage in the Bible. These people are doing big things and yet they
Kenneth J.
Jul 12, 2011 rated it liked it
I gave this a "3" because it is a very faithfully presented explanation of Lordship Salvation. I don't agree with it, and feel that the application of its principles will result in a very unhealthy, though perhaps externally moral, life, but does not provide any means of assurance of salvation that is not provided through simple belief in the Bible's assurances.
My understanding of eternal life is that it is indeed eternal, which includes the certainty that once one gains it it not only cannot b
Jul 07, 2011 added it
Shelves: christianity
Ooh, this was a toughie. I can't even give it a star was just too challenging for that. Going into it, I had the thought that my answer to the book's title would be no, and I was right. :-\ I go to church, support charities, volunteer my time, and I have faith in God, but the Jesus question is tougher for me. I simply have lots of question and my faith is shaky, but to be honest it's never been really tested. I just don't know that I'm a true Christian believer, and it's tough to bas ...more
J.S. Park
Aug 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian
With a strong, sure, often humorous voice, Mike McKinley surgically cuts into the heart of being a Christian. My concern for books like this one is guilt-driven legalism or morbid introspection. But McKinley, while veering close to this sometimes, gives a bittersweet conviction that should actually free many Christians to fully realizing their identity. Many of us have an incomplete picture of Christ and therefore assume our security: McKinley's goal is to shake us out of our reverie and drive u ...more
Jul 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
The introduction to this book says alot. Mike has a way of putting things in simple understandable terms. He uses humor and down to earth situations to help. This book is for those who believe they are Christians. It is backed up with scripture. Not just a verse here or there to fit what he says but paragraphs to show what God is saying to us.

It is not a comfortable book. He makes you think about where you are, if you are a true believer or just going through the motions. It is a book of convict
Sandra Stiles
Sep 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult, christian
God knows his own. Just saying we’re a Christian doesn’t make it so. God sees “us clearly, we don’t see ourselves clearly.” I loved to Willy Wonka and how God makes it clear what we have to do to be a Christian. There are no “hidden clauses.” He uses many analogies. “Our life is destroyed by sin, not damaged by it. He used a rotted closet to represent our sinful lives. We can’t patch it up. Christ must replace every bit of the rot with his love and grace,( see page 35). Just “liking” Jesus doesn ...more
May 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Mike McKinley has written an excellent concise book on the topic of salvation. Having made a profession of faith as a child, I struggled mightily through high school and into college with assurance of my salvation. I wish I would have had this book then! His 9 chapters explore concrete statements of Scripture to help the professing believer evaluate whether they are genuinely in the faith or not. Every chapter concludes with application and accountability questions. Perhaps one of the greatest s ...more
May 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
What a terrific book! Here's a little volume written for anew believer, a struggling believer, even a believer who isn't sure why they should join a church. Yes, assurance of salvation is one of the benefits of church membership.

This book was a great reminder for me of the many basic, foundational attitudes and actions that need to be taken every day and every week to "work out my salvation." Written in an informal, warm (even funny) style, this is a book to have on the shelf because it is wort
David Morris
Apr 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
Really helpful stuff from McKinley to help us obey the command to examine ourselves to see if we are in the faith. As a writer, he is hard-hitting but generally avoids being abrasive. He frames his points in "You're not a Christian if...," and then nails it. Does a really good job stressing holiness and grace without pitting them against each other, as well as the need to fight sin but not sinless perfection. Highly recommend, whether your are struggling for assurance, discipling, or just need t ...more
Seamless Melody
Sep 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
If this a question for ya, it may be a useful resource to begin with.

Or if someone's asking you to help them with this question, it's useful to help folks think through their salvation if they are confused. It's a starting point though... the rest of their answers is found in the Bible. That's the better book to walk them through 8)

The main body of the work then focuses on five evidences of new birth –
“Five Things All Christians Have”:

Belief in true doctrine
Hatred for sin in your life
Josue Manriquez
Jun 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This is an excellent book. The content is an excellent reminder to all Christians, and is much needed for anyone who professes to be a Christian yet isn't. The author is also a great writer. :-) ...more
Jul 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
Perfectly boils down the instructions for how to be a true Christian.

full review here:
Justin Dillehay
Nov 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Very, very good book. It would be worth requiring all candidates for baptism and church membership. McKinley is clear, funny, and biblical.
Apr 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic book. Challenging examination of your own life. Great resource to use with others. I highly recommend it.
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Mike McKinley is the author of Passion, Did the devil make me do it? and Church Planting is for Wimps. Since 2005 he has been pastor of Guilford Baptist Church in Sterling, Virginia. Before that, he served on the pastoral staff of Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington DC, having received his MDiv from Westminster Theological Seminary. Mike is married to Karen, and they have five children.

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