We hear a lot today about self-indentifying. “I identify as....”. You get the picture. You are learning more and more about the drill by now. Men identifying as women, women identifying as men, men identifying as 6 year old girls, women identifying as dragons...or cats...or...you name it. And this is just the beginning. The proverbial pandora’s box is opening. People identifying as whatever they want, and yet here’s the scary thing. What if they are using the bathroom you are in and they suddenly decide they are something else now. What’s so strange about that? If one can arbitrarily decide he’s not male but female, who’s to say he can’t just as easily decide something different tomorrow?
So what’s behind it all? Why would anyone even want to be something other that what they actually are? Well I know there are a lot of reasons in the background. Traumatic things in their lives, being hurt andabused by those they were supposed to be able to trust. Heck, just years of being told you can be anything you want to be and taking that to an extreme and deciding you don’t like who you are. On top of that hearing the constant barrage in the media and all the cultural background noise that tells you its up to you to decide what you want to be...your decision....even if it means rejecting what you were born as. Even to the degree of being another species! Yes these may all be factors in what is happening in our world today, but I think there is something else even more fundamental behind it.
What’s ultimately behind it all is rebellion. Nobody wants anybody telling them what to do. Nobody should be able to decide what I want to be or do with my life but me. Especially not God.This is the ultimate rebellion. Not even God can tell me what to do. Just because I was born a man doesn’t mean I have to be one. I should still have a choice to be anything I want. God can’t control my life, I’m in control. I do what I want, decide what I want, be what I want and he can’t do anything about it. Of course to do this you must either reject God’s existence, decide that he doesn’t care anyway, or that he is so loving and compassionate (or tolerant) that he wants you to be whatever you want to be too, even if it totally goes against your biological makeup. In Psalm 2 the writer tells us of a time when people were doing the same thing. He put it this way “The kings of the earth...and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and against His Anointed saying, “Let us burst their bonds apart and cast away their cords from us.”” Then he tells us how God responded to it. “He who sits in the heavens laughs”. He finds it humorous that mankind would even think they could so easily cast off his authority. Its a comedy to think that people think that just because they want it to be so makes it so. Do you think you can get rid of God that easily? Just decide it and its done? The Psalmist goes on to describe the rest of God’s response...”He holds them in derision”. He’s derisive at anybody’s attempt to do away with him that quickly. Can the clay say to the potter “you can’t make me like this”? Sound absurd? Make you want to laugh? Yet this is exactly what is happening today.
Well, thankfully this isn’t the end of the story. God really is a God of love. He had a solution for man’s rebellion and pride. He became a man himself. He came to do life in the world we live in. Experience all the pressures and tough times and confusion, turmoil and temptation we do. He knows what it is like to have to face it all in the human body God gives us, yet he succeeded in pleasing God through it all and living life the way its supposed to be lived in the body God gave him. He glorified God in the identity God gave him as the very Son of God....Jesus. This Jesus didn’t reject his identity as God, but he was willing to let go of it long enough to take responsibility for all our confusion, wrongheadedness, failure, and rebellion against God and receive the penaltyfor that rebellion in his own body by dying a criminal’s death, being executed for our sakes on a Roman cross. You see while God is a God of love that’s not all he is. He’s also a God of holiness and justice. For God to accept us in our rebellious state he requires justice (which interestingly is such a popular word today). Someone must pay the penalty for all this wrong being done. This is what Jesus came to do. This same Jesus God brought to life again, and it so doing is saying he accepts Jesus sacrifice of his own life in our place.
THIS is what the God of love has done for you. You want a resolution to your identity crisis? Stop rebelling against God’s plan and humble yourself before your maker. Because of Jesus, God will forgive you and give you a brand new identity in Christ. He will make you His own son or daughter and you will no longer want to be anything other that what He has made you. It’s simple; believe in what Jesus did for you and God will forgive you and restore you into a relationship with himself. Yet its so difficult, because you have to give up control of your own life and identity. He must be in control of that. Then and only then will you find the peace and identity you are looking for.
Identifying with Christ....