Knowing God: Identification
Updated: Apr 22
Here in Rock Hall, we have tried to stay focused on developing as followers of Jesus as we Gathering to worship; Growing in relationships; and Going to serve.
Growing in our relationships includes growing in our relationship with Jesus. This leads us to develop his character in our lives and understand his calling on our lives. This GROWING happens as we learn more about him and put it into practice.
This is the way that our experience of God's power at work in us, it doesn't stop with us, it makes a difference in the world around us.
This series of talks from City Changers, a ministry who's purpose is to help disciples live out their calling as disciples in such a way that their community is changed. That's our desire here in Rock Hall.
Consider this from Matt 5: 13-16 in the Message paraphrase of the Bible
“Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage. “Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.
The Gospel is GOOD NEWS. It is the good news of us being included in redemption.
We were fully implicated in the fall of Adam – you became a sinner, not because you sinned, but because you were included in the bloodline of Adam.
We were equally fully included in Jesus Christ – we have been proclaimed righteous, not because of our own righteous deeds, but because we were included in the moment of his perfect sacrifice and victory on the cross.
Through faith in the completed work of Jesus Christ on the cross, we now approach life no longer from the perspective of the fall of Adam, but from the victory that has been established in Jesus Christ. This is a daily choice, whether we choose to live from the tree of life (The victory of Christ on our behalf), or the tree of knowledge (the continued identification of the inferior life in Adam).
What is our Paradigm:
for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus
We have to discover that all ministry originates from a clear understanding of verse 24, and not a sense that we are still trying to fix man who is stuck in verse 23. The point of departure for our preaching, teaching, counselling, evangelism, prayers and worship must be from the understanding that justification in our lives has been established, and that we have redemption in Christ Jesus. We are not still negotiating redemption with God, God took the initiative, and now it is something we discover through revelation, and embrace by faith.
The basis of our new life in Christ, is established in the divine exchange that took place on the cross.
“For if by one man’s offense death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.”
GUILT SHAME PAIN
GRACE RIGHTEOUSNESS AUTHORITY
We are now convinced that whatever happened to the human race because of Adam’s fall, is far superseded in every possible proportion by the revelation of mankind’s inclusion in the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ.
Rom.5:18,19 Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.
Rom.5:18,19 Mirror “The conclusion is clear: it took just one offence to condemn mankind; one act of righteousness declares the same mankind innocent! The disobedience of the one man exhibits humanity as sinners, the obedience of another man exhibits humanity as righteous!
This mystery of God’s love plan, now reveals how one would die for all, and how simultaneously all indeed died in His death so that all could legally share in His glory! At the cross all of humanity were represented in the single act of one man and so disarm the claim of darkness and ignorance over all people.
Through this one act of obedience Christ delivered mankind from the power and authority of darkness. As history recorded the death and resurrection of one individual, eternity recorded the repositioning of humanity.
Now being in Christ we are therefore no longer ‘Sinners’ we are the ‘Righteousness of God”
2 Cor 5:21 Col 1:13 Rom 6:1-13 Rom 8:2-4
We are no longer seeking God, we are found in Him. Eph 2:13
Man is to discover that he has been associated in Christ, in His death, resurrection and ascension. Jesus is not just an example for man; He is the example of man!
2 Corinthians 3:18. ‘Beholding Him as in a mirror, changes the individual into His likeness, from glory [opinion] to glory [opinion]’
His opinion defines the reference of who I truly am. The mirror reflects mankind in Christ. Our discovery of this new reference in Christ, brings real transformation; this realization is so much more effective than the exercise of our willpower!
Heb.2:9 says : “But we see Jesus……”
Beholding Him we are being changed. Through my beholding Him, accurately as in a mirror. I am looking at the proclamation of God over my life. I see Jesus now as the definition of who I am. Not in a religious way, or getting all sentimental about Him but this desiring to know him more, so that I could discover myself, The power is in seeing Him as in a mirror. The power of the gospel is SEEING YOUR IDENTITY IN CHRIST JESUS. We are exposed to God’s original design on display, all the detail of man’s design exhibited now in Christ. Instead of seeing the fallen state of man, the demand of the New Testament is not in us trying to become better through our own willpower, but in our commitment to behold Him. I look away unto Jesus. my true identity. Looking deeply, intently, paying the closer attention, becoming addicted to what the Word reveals concerning me. I will then become what I actually am, and I discover this identity through my beholding of Him. Jesus is the pioneer and conclusion of our salvation.
Heb.2:10 “For it was fitting for Him (God) by whom and from whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the author (Jesus) of their salvation perfect through suffering.”
I see myself associated in Christ Jesus. When He was raised a new species of mankind was born, a new race was born. He put an end to the old fallen Adamic race. He became the last Adam. He brought forth many sons to glory. Redemption in our lives happens when we discover ourselves in this good news story, and we judge ourselves as being included in the completed work of Jesus Christ.
2 Cor 5:14 &16-17
For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died;……. Therefore, from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him thus no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
Our identification with Christ, his DEATH, his RESURRECTION and he is ASCENSION. is the basis of our new identity! See yourself dead to your old life, raised into Resurrection life, and seated with him in a position of authority in heavenly places.