I don’t pretend to have all the answers, especially on such a touchy topic of defining what it means to be a Christian.
I think there are a range of answers to this question.
But I also think there are some basic tenants that go into defining what it means to be a Christian.
Like this: Being a Christian means that one has identified themself as a follower of Jesus Christ. Even that might be a bit tricky since we need to define what it means to be a follower. In this sense, a follower is someone who is committed to a way of life and teachings of someone else. They aren’t just a fan or have an interest in something, but have actually committed time, energy, and other resources towards the person or cause they are claiming to follow.
So, if this is true (And that’s debatable), then what would it mean to be a Christian?
I would say that it would be someone who does their best to follow the teachings and commands of Jesus. Like the Sermon on the Mount. Like the end of Matthew 28 which calls on Christians to go and make disciples and baptize. Like John 6 which calls on Christians to celebrate the Lord’s Supper. Like Matthew 25 which implores us to take care of those less fortunate like the hungry. And many more examples throughout the bible. Like Luke 9 in which Jesus calls on us to pick up our cross and follow him.
I don’t see how Christianity means to dedicate oneself to the path of domination and acquisition of power. I don’t see how Christianity means advancing a partisan political party, leader, or cause. I don’t see how Christianity is about lining up your faith beliefs with that of your political convictions and finding they match up perfectly. But I could certainly be wrong. I welcome people showing me how Christianity is actually about this – show me where Jesus talks about this. Show me how Jesus wanted to advance the Empire in order to advance God’s kingdom. I welcome those references. I’m not going to hold my breath waiting though for those references.