Sin or Savior Identity

How do you most often find yourself thinking? Do you think like the sin you once did or like the saint you have become? This is a very important question because the answer is attached to your identity. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. {Eph 2:13}. It is true we once were far away from God and a product of the worlds influence on our souls but when we made Jesus Christ Lord and Savior of our souls we are now transitioned into a new identity. So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God's holy people. You are members of God's family. {Eph 2:19 NLT}.

This new person is there for the taking but it requires faith to become the new person. The faith is not in you as a person and your strength but in Jesus Christ, His Blood and Spirit and what these have turned you into. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. {2 Cor 5:17}. In our strength, we cannot be the “new creation” but Jesus said in the book of Matthew that with God all things are possible even those things that are impossible for man.

Sin Does Not Define You For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light {Eph 5:8}. When we constantly think of ourselves as the sin we once were we often allow that sin to define who we are, when the Bible tells us that If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. {1Jn 1:9}. So why is it that so many forgiven, repentant sinners still walk as sinners instead of saints? It begins with a lack of identity then a lack of self-forgiveness as well as the need to receive healing from that old identity. The truth is when we ask Jesus Christ to come into our lives He doesn’t come in and sweep out all the junk at once. Healing and deliverance is a process that requires an unrelenting release of self to God. We must cast our cares on Him, throw that stuff towards the heavens with violence and determination to see God bring life to a redeemed soul.

Chosen Generation

And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled {Col 1:21}. The words “once were” mean that you are no longer. This is past tense not present. Both your understanding and affections were non-participating and hostile towards God but He reconciled that so the chasm that once was is no longer.

Identity is a sense of self and can be defined as a condition of being the same either with something or possessing a character that we claim. When we continually possess (own) a sin character as our identity we are not walking in the light of Christ or how He identifies us as the children of light, and the children of the day {1Thess 5:5} rather we are still identifying with the old creation as children of the devil. If this is your situation, then you are believing the lies of the devil which are meant to keep you from the promises of God.

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; {1 Pet 2:9}.

When a child is born, we don’t start comparing the child’s physical and emotional characteristics as flawed and in need of condemning but rather the parents begin to see the beauty in the physical and emotional characteristics of that newborn child. They quickly begin to dream of who their baby may become and what he or she can and will accomplish with the right direction. When a child begins to walk, he stumbles and falls a lot but the parent continuously picks the child up and helps him get going again or sits pleasantly by watching the child learn to recover from each fall until he stops falling. That’s our Father with us. When we experience constant condemnation in our relationship with God and others then we are still not experiencing the freedom we should. Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil as well as give abundant life. It is ours, He gave it. We must simply receive it with faith.

Walk by Faith Not by Sight

We are a conditioned people, one that must see, touch, and smell everything in order to believe it to be true. Even in this drive thru society and technology driven world we still have a desire to experience things tangibly in order to believe it. It’s quite the opposite with God for we are told For we walk by faith, not by sight. {2 Cor 5:7} and that without faith it is impossible to please God. There is a certain amount of faith a stumbling toddler has when learning to walk, he believes somewhere inside that he can walk and when people encourage him his belief is strengthened. The Scriptures are full of encouragement to keep us stumbling forward until we can walk straight and without as much assistance. It is the word of God that manifest the presence of God and that builds our faith. Consequently, faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. {Rom 10:17}. God’s word is our foundation of faith for without it we don’t know what to believe or how to believe.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 2 For by it the elders obtained a good testimony. {Heb 11:1,2}. As children of God through relationship in Jesus Christ, we have a hope for the things we can’t see and by this hope we obtain a good testimony and the testimony we obtain is relative to our relationship with God. Revelation 12 tells us that we overcome not only by the Blood of the Lamb but by the word of our testimony and in Matthew 12 Jesus said our words will either acquit us or condemn us. It is the testimony we obtain by faith that causes us to identify with Christ and in His sufferings which, in turn, gives us the strength to go through the fiery trials of life and the persecution unto death.

Identity Crisis

But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you are blessed. "And do not be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled." 15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; {1Pe 3:14,15 NKJV}.

Unfortunately, too many Christians are not prepared with an answer as to their hope that is in them which leaves them vulnerable to the prey of the conniving and deceitful people who unwittingly work for the adversary, the devil who is roaming to and from looking for someone to devour.

You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord's table and of the table of demons. {1Co 10:21 NKJV}. Paul makes this statement in regards to eating and drinking but there is a spiritual overtone here as well. Looking at this verse through a different lens we could use this to demonstrate that we can’t partake of our old sin nature and our new identity in Christ. This kind of thinking doesn’t lead to a life well spent in servitude and relationship with God but rather it keeps us slaves to sin even if we are not actively practicing it. Demons are really good at holding our minds captive to the old life before we were born again, however, the opposite should be true because Jesus gave us power and authority to drive out all demons (Lk 9), so we should not be allowing them to bully us!

#identityinChrist #faith

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