There are many characteristics of false disciples found in the bible that will help you know either you or someone else isn’t a true follower of Christ Jesus.
And in this post, we are going to discuss the 11 major traits that someone will show if that person isn’t a true disciple of Jesus Christ even if they claim to be so with their lips.
With that said, let’s look at the 11 major characteristics of false disciples to look out for that will help you know if someone is in the camp of Christ or not.
What Is A Fake Disciple?
Biblically speaking, a fake disciple is simply someone who claims to be of Christ but has no interest in obeying and following the teachings of Jesus Christ.
And such people are usually religious in their faith but are void of the life of Christ in them, a distinctive factor that differentiates true followers of Christ from fake ones.
In short, someone who is a fake disciple has no interest in following after Jesus Christ and submitting under His Lordship, one of the major perquisites of true discipleship.
11 Major Characteristics Of Fake Disciples.
Below are the 11 major characteristics of fake disciples that clearly show that they have nothing to do with Christ and don’t know what trey discipleship is all about.
- Unwilling To Deny Self.
- Unwilling To Take Up Their Cross.
- They Are Judas Iscariots.
- No Genuine Salvation.
- Can’t Endure Sound Doctrine.
- Hate The Truth.
- Love False Worship.
- Unwilling To Endure Persecution.
One of the major characteristics of false disciples who claim to be of Christ but not in their actions is that they are extremely religious and practice empty religion void of Jesus Christ.
A fake disciple who is religious only practices empty religion such as going to church every Sunday but don’t bear good fruits of righteousness in their lives.
And there are many such fake disciples in false churches full of false teachings today who are not willing to fully commit to their Master Jesus Christ and to follow His righteous ways.
The bible says in James 1:27 that pure religion is undefiled and has the truth of God, love for others and enable one to keep themselves unspotted from this present evil world.
But since fake disciples don’t practice true and pure religion, they are not unspotted from the evil of this world which explain why they are no different from the heathens other than a fake religious label of going to church every Sunday they have.
2. Unwilling To Deny Self.
If it’s one thing that separates true disciples of Jesus Christ from fake disciples is that the former is willing to deny self while the latter has no intentions of doing so whatsoever.
The love of self in the latter group who are fake believers is simply too much for them to even think of denying it for a second in their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ made it clear in Luke 9:23 that anyone that desires to come after Him must deny himself and take up his cross daily to follow Him. Otherwise, if you are unable to do so, you can’t be a true disciple of Jesus Christ.
And sadly, this is what most fake disciples out there are unwilling to do. They just want to serve our Lord Jesus Christ when it’s convenient for them but unfortunately, that’s not how true discipleship works, dear.
If you are a false disciple who otherwise claims to be a follower of Christ, you will find self-denial an Achilles hill and something impossible to do at all because self hasn’t yet been cleansed and crucified yet (Romans 6:6).
3. Unwilling To Take Up Their Cross.
In addition to the unwillingness to deny self that Christ demands in Mathews 16:24 to all those who desire to come after him, fake disciples are unwilling to take up their cross to follow Him.
Most people who claim to be followers of Christ Jesus don’t understand that choosing to follow after Him comes at a cost and has a cross to bear which is uncomfortable to self which loves comfort and pleasure all the time.
When Jesus Christ says to take up your cross to follow Him, He simply means that you must be willing to bear the inconveniences and hardships that come with being a true disciple of Christ.
And taking up your cross for our Lord Jesus Christ isn’t easy as it requires you to crucify yourself as Paul wonderful put it in Galatians 5:24 and its desires that come with it so that you can truly love and serve Christ wholeheartedly.
If you are a false disciple as you are reading this dear, you won’t have any intention of taking up your cross especially when things become inconvenient in your life and you will rather throw away the cross you think it’s too heavy for you to carry.
4. They Are Judas Iscariots.
If you are not a true believer or disciple of Jesus Christ but claim to be, you are essentially a Judas Iscariot and there many Judas Iscariots in churches today who are only interested in money just as the Judas Iscariot of the new testament was.
A false disciple who has Judas Iscariot characteristics is only interested in Jesus Christ if there is financial gain to be gained in serving Him. A false disciple might even appear to be one of the true followers of Christ but inside, it’s something else.
Just like the way Judas Iscariot who was with our Lord Jesus Christ but not one of Him who betrayed Him in John 18:1-6 a fake disciple will deny and betray Christ when the opportunity to do so presents itself especially if there is money to be gained.
This is why it’s very difficult to know who is a true apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ and who is not because fake disciples are good at pretending and you can easily mistake them for true followers of Christ if you don’t know what to look for.
But no matter how someone can pretend to be a true disciple of Christ in their Christian faith, their fruits will eventually manifest in due time especially in times of trains as a tree will always be known by its fruits (Luke 6:43-45).
5. No Genuine Salvation.
Lack of genuine salvation is one of the common characteristics of false disciples that you will notice also which is why they are not true disciples in the first place.
You can’t be a true disciple of Christ or a true Christian if you don’t haven’t yet received salvation in your life that brings eternal life as saves one from the wrath to come (1 Thessalonians 1:10).
There are many false disciples today who go to church every Sunday for formality who have not experienced genuine salvation in their lives yet and such people are only deceiving themselves, sadly.
This lack of genuine salvation among these fake disciples who don’t live a life of godliness that all true believers live is evident by the kinds of sinful lifestyles they live and indulge in.
And if you are one of such people who isn’t saved yet but claim to be a follower of Jesus Christ, you need to be saved today as, without salvation, you won’t be able to make it for heaven even if you were going o church every Sunday if you die today.
A person who isn’t a true follower of Christ, won’t have any intentions of following His commandments which is a litmus test to all those who claim to be His disciples (John 14:15).
If you are a true follower of Jesus Chris who understand what true discipleship is all about, you will be obedient to His commandment found in God’s word in the bible.
Obeying God’s word and what He says won’t be a hard and grievous thing to do because if you are a true disciple of Christ in your Christian faith, you will have a new nature of Christ that enables you to do that which fake disciples don’t have.
On the other hand, if you are a false disciple who just claims to be a Christian by word of mouth hand, not actions, you will be disobedient to His word which will be made clear by the kind of lifestyle you live.
False disciples usually claim to love the Lord with their lips but deny Him in their deeds and are abominable to every good work and unfit to be in God’s kingdom (Titus 1:16).
7. Can’t Endure Sound Doctrine.
The apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 4:3 warns that in the last days, the time will come when most people won’t be able to endure the sound doctrine of the bible but after their lusts will prefer to listen to false teachers teaching destructive heresies due to their itching ears.
And this is the case today as most people are no longer willing to endure the sound doctrine of the bible concerning sin and holiness of which without according to Hebrews 12:14, no man shall see the Lord.
This is why churches where they teach the truth and sound doctrine of the bible in its entirety will often have few church members. But in false churches where true bible doctrine isn’t taught, you will find many people filled there.
All this is because many so-called fake believers who claim to be of God but are not are only interested in hearing what they want to hear and not what will convict them of their sinful lifestyles which they find offensive by the way.
But if you are a true Christian or a follower of Jesus Christ, you will detest false teachings from false teachers, no matter how appealing they may be to your sinful flesh that only wants to hear things that will make it feel good.
8. Hate The Truth.
Someone who isn’t a true believer and follower of Jesus Christ will always Hate the truth, especially what Jesus says in John 14:6 that He’s the way, the truth and the life and that none can come to the Father except by Him.
Fake apostles or disciples are always offended by the truth of God’s words especially if it’s convicting them of their sin and will call you judgmental if you try to preach against their sinful lifestyle.
There are like the false disciples of John 6:60 who immediately left our Lord Jesus Christ in whom only you can find the truth you seek in life when He told them the truth of discipleship or what it means to be His follower.
The same happens today which is why when such people hear the real truth of the bible which talks about sin and holiness in a bible believing church, they end up leaving that church proving they were not of Christ even if they pretended to.
And a lot of people who claim to be believers are just like the counterfeit followers of the above-mentioned verse who only followed Christ when it was convenient for them to do so or when they ate bread.
Another characteristic trait you will notice if someone is not a true disciple of Christ is that they will live a life of wickedness which is ungodly and unrighteous in every way.
Of course, a fake disciple or false apostle can profess Christ in their Christian faith for show business but don’t live like it in their daily life nor are they willing to obey the sound doctrine of truth found in scripture.
And the reason why such people don’t live a life of holiness and purity is that they haven’t yet received the grace that Titus 2:11 talks about which brings salvation and eternal life to all men which enables one to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts.
Instead, they take pleasure in sin and find sin attractive or appealing due to the love of sin in their evil hearts which makes them obey the desires of their sinful flesh.
If you are living such a lifestyle dear, remember, there are consequences which are illustrated in Romans 1:15-32 if you don’t quickly repent and turn to the Lord before it’s too late to do so.
10. Love False Worship.
The love of false worship which only please and tickles the flesh is one of the common characteristics of false disciples who have no love for true worship which is in truth and in Spirit which true believers do (John 4:24).
If you notice, this has been a trend lately in most churches, false churches actually where they don’t teach the truth and in such churches, people only sing, breakdance like jellyfish and play lousy drums with hardly any sound preaching of God’s word at all.
Most people today, live on a feelings-based Christianity which is made clear by the songs they sing, too which claim to be of God but only there to appease their flesh.
This is why these days you can’t differentiate a worldly disco from a supposedly church worship as they just look the same with the same dancing, lighting and all sorts of stuff you find in the world.
Spiritual hymns that edify the spirit and draw it to God are considered boring and uninteresting but such people worship our Lord God in vain even if they draw nigh unto Him with their lips (Isaiah 29:13).
11. Unwilling To Endure Persecution.
It’s just a matter of fact that when you become a true disciple, a true apostle of Jesus Christ, you will suffer persecution just as Christ said in John 15:18-27 as a servant can’t be greater than His Master.
If He was persecuted, what makes you think you won’t because as a true Christian, you must know you are not of this world even if you are in this world.
But if you are a false disciple who doesn’t understand the cost that comes with true discipleship and following after Christ is that when persecutions come, you will immediately give up your Christian faith without even having second thoughts about it.
Fake disciples only want to serve the Lord when things are convenient which is the case with mane fake Christian today but when little persecution comes, they feel discouraged and give up.
However, if you are a true Christian who is truly saved and on your way to heaven, you will understand as Paul said in 2 Timothy 3:12 that persecutions are just part of the package if you are a true follower of Christ.
I hope the above characteristics of false disciples will now help you know if someone is a true disciple or not and how to identify them even if they claim otherwise.
Conversely, if you realize that you haven’t been a true follower of Christ but want to once and for all, read this post on how to be truly born again which is the first step to discipleship.
In closing, let me know in the comments below if you found this post useful and don’t forget to share with others who need to read this.
- 11 Signs Of A False Convert (Every Christian Must Know.)
- 15 Signs Of A True Christian [That Hypocrites Can’t Copy].
- 11 Characteristics Of Unbelieves [That Show They Aren’t Truly Saved Yet].
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