Friday, August 29, 2014
The Crippling Clutter Of Lesser Identities
Galatians 3:26 So in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
That’s who you are! And that is who you are not. According to Galatians 3, there is no such thing as a male son of God, and there is no such thing as a female son of God. Further, there is no such thing as a homosexual son of God, neither is there such a thing as a heterosexual son of God. There are only sons of God. That is our Primary Identity. That is how God sees us. What do you see?
In my experience, most people put their true identity, “son of God,” on no greater level than they do their earthly identities: “I’m a man,” “I’m an American,” “I’m a Republican,” “I’m a boss,” “I’m a salesman,” “I’m a husband,” and so on. Do you know how tragic this is? We’re not impressed by who we are, often because we’ve been seduced into believing we are many things, each of which need work. As an example, which topic has more books available to you today, which one sells more: “How To Enjoy Being A Son of God,” or “How to Be a Better Man,” “How to Be a Better Husband,” “How to Be A Better Wife,” “How to Be a Better Salesman,” and “How to Lose Weight & Be the Person You Really Are”? Which?
God knows who we are in Christ and He is talking with us all about who we are and the benefits of that so we can live as we are. But we want Him to talk with us about lesser identities, which we might think are more practical, even though they’re comparatively rarely mentioned in the New Covenant. Have you noticed that? And we’re disguised from the glory of who we are. And we cannot live by faith. We’re impaired, and don’t recognize that our limp comes from the wound of a false identity.
To me it is just as foolish to tout a heterosexual identity as it is for someone to tout a homosexual identity. Both identities are outside of Christ, and captives are made in such ways.
Colossians 2:6 So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, 7 rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
8 See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental principles of this world rather than on Christ.
9 For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10 and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.
I think it is worldly and dangerous to choose an identity, whether it is based upon status, ethnicity, desire, geography, grade point average, or bodily plumbing(!), because it leads the chooser away from life in Christ (which is where we are), away from being rooted and built up in Him, and away from enjoying the fullness we have received in Christ. The one so choosing has been made a prisoner, even if he doesn’t recognize the invisible bars.
Our bodies are not for us to figure out and to gain identities from; you must know what a trap that is! Our bodies are for the Lord, for His work, for His display, for His glory, and for His life. (See 1 Corinthians 6:13.) There’s no rest in Christ when you believe you’re primarily something outside of Christ, and focus and work upon that. We no longer live, but Christ, remember? Any particular struggle that goes on in the body, any wrestling we encounter within, however it comes, however it looks, is for Him with us there—“Christ in us, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27). That’s where God is; have you found Him there? Probably not if a lesser, worldly identity has your focus.
My friends who refer to themselves as “gay,” know that I won’t talk with them about their chosen worldly identity. Instead, I talk with them about their heavenly identity, their “here-is-who-you-are-in-Christ” identity, because I believe they are who He says they are, new creation sons of God, and that they are then Christ’s workmanship—from beginning to end. He who began a good work IN them—not UPON them—is who I want them to know. For them to be filled and led by the Spirit inside is everything to me, so I recognize them not as the world does, or even as they might want me to recognize them—as gay. To see them and to approach them only as what they feel and what they desire is, I think, for me to choose blindness and to injure them, and I want nothing to do with that.
It’s the same for me with people who are married, people who are single, people who are heterosexual, people who are kids, people who are black, people who are white, people who are Democrats, people who are Republicans—that’s not who they are! Those things are comparative cover-ups to the truth, the truth that brings life within. So this is not a pro-heterosexual rant, neither is it a pro-homosexual rant; it’s a pro-Christ-in-you rant.
My suggestion? Repent, re-think who we are and where we are—sons of God in Christ—and lay aside the clutter of lesser identities. Choosing them has distracted, crippled, and disguised us even to ourselves. The truth is much better.
This is a transcript of the video, “The Crippling Clutter of Lesser Identities,” and is for those who might rather read than watch. To see the video, click http://youtu.be/GjzG5rv-Tl8.)