May 23, 2007
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth
not to be ashamed rightly dividing the word of truth. II Timothy 2:15
Live Your True Identity
by Jack Northart
If we want to be successful in our walk with God, we have to believe in our identity of what God has made us to be. Many times, people allow their past experiences to dictate what their current identity is all about. One of the great misdirected beliefs today is that somehow, somewhere, someone (certainly not us) is responsible for filling our lives with continual happiness, exciting career options, nurturing family time, and blissful personal relationships, simply because we exist.
Since most people have a hard time being happy, then it must be somebody else’s fault. Many people, including Christians, have been conditioned to blame something outside of themselves for the parts of our life that they don’t like. We blame our parents, our bosses, our friends, the media, our coworkers, our clients, our spouse, the weather, the economy, our lack of money – anyone or anything that we can blame it on. Most people seldom want to look at where the real problem exists; failing to look at what God has done, continues to do, and what abilities He has given us.
I Corinthians 1:30
But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.
God, through Christ has given us wisdom. He has given us righteousness, which many can’t identify with because they have been schooled to feel bad. How could God possibly give us righteousness? It is because Jesus Christ accomplished it on our behalf. What about sanctification? God has certainly set us apart from the rest of the world. Again, Christ accomplished this on our behalf. The same is true of redemption. He redeemed us with the price of his sinless blood. We have been bought back from sin and death by Jesus Christ. It is now our true identity. This is our life and how we should live. However, we are the ones to decide whether or not to accept this reality.
But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Not of works, lest any man should boast.
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
Do I identify being quickened from death to life? Do I identify in the grace by which He saved me? Do I identify with being seated in the heavenly places with Christ? Do I identify with the reality that Christ is coming back someday and when he does God will show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us? Do I identify with being God’s workmanship, His masterpiece? If I don’t, I should because it’s true.
It’s not the college we attend, or the job that we have, or the person we are married to, or the career we have chosen that identifies who we really are. For the born again believer, it is what God has done, will continue to do that has made us who we are giving us our true identity.
Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more:
Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.
Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, and be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.
The apostle Paul had many things that he could point to in his life as being great accomplishments. He would have been a spiritual “blue blood” of his day and time. But rather than boast himself because of that, he boasted on what God in Christ made him to be. He identified with that reality; his true identity.
II Corinthians 3:5
Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God.
Some take this verse to say that we shouldn’t boast. However, this does not say anything about boasting. The word for “think” here is the Greek word logizimai, from which we get the English word for logic. We are not to make “logical” conclusions about ourselves from all of our accomplishments in life, because that has nothing to do with what God has done for us and made us to be. Our power and ability and sufficiency are from God. That is our true identity, and that is what we should conclude.
When we are faced with identifying ourselves with other people, we could do that by saying what we do for a living, or where we live, or what car we drive, or who we are married to, or what color our skin is, or what school we go to, or what city we are from, or what church we go to. Truthfully, our identity is what God has made us to be.
Romans 8: 35-39
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
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