The following reflections are from a good friend and mentor, a disciple of Jesus who has often encouraged me and many others with the love and grace of Christ. John is a shepherd with the Stones River church, a co-worker in disciple-making, and a former member of Timothy Network’s Board of Accountability. He is passionate about teaching followers of Jesus their identity in Christ. MLS
Who are you? How do you identify yourself? What is at the core of all you think, say, and do? What is it that you are living from?
Another way of considering it is to ask, “What is my faith about who I am?” Does my faith align with the faith (beliefs) that my Father has for and of me? I am made in His image – what does that mean? “If you have seen me,” Jesus said, “you have seen the Father.” Then, First John 4:17 says, “In this world we are like him (Jesus).”
I was recently introduced to a thought that has really stuck – The Bible contains writings from the Holy Spirit that show us the Father’s faith, i.e. what He believes about us. Consider these few verses in ways He helps us with our identity: Galatians 5:1, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us (me) free.” Ephesians 1:3-4, “Praise be to the God and Father of our (my) Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us (me) in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For, He chose us (me) in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.” Hebrews 10:12-14, “But when this priest (Jesus) had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those (me) who are being made holy.” Romans 8:1, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those (me) who are in Christ Jesus.”
What is my Father’s faith from these verses? What does He say about me?
I have been set from sin
I am holy and blameless in His sight
I have been made perfect forever and am being made holy
I have no condemnation because I am in Christ Jesus
Convinced of these truths, I choose to allow the faith of my Father to identify me: free, holy and blameless, made perfect forever with no condemnation – to the glory and honor of my Father! I rest in His finished work and say, Amen, that is who I am! If my Father is for me, who can be against me? No one or no weapon can stand against me except me!
May our Father’s faith for us shape our thinking, our words, our actions. May we embody an identity and character that looks like Jesus because “as he is so are we in this world” (1 John 4:17 NKJV).