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Message

Who Are You? - Part 1, GOD
Miles McPherson - November 26, 2017

Message Recap

MAY I SPEAK LIFE OVER YOU?

Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I Sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” Jeremiah 1:5

DECLARATION:

Your identity in Christ was established before you were born and is the source of our true identity. 

Your identity in Christ was established before you were born and is the source of our true identity.

When you want to see your physical identity, you check the mirror and trust the mirror to show you a truthful image; the mirror may show you that your shirt is buttoned crookedly or your hair is sticking up in the front, so then you can respond accordingly. But when you want to understand your spiritual identity, you must look in the Bible, which is the source of spiritual truth. The Bible says that you are made in God’s image to reflect and express the glory of God, appointed to rule and have dominion over the earth, and to express God’s love, forgiveness, and compassion to others to bring His kingdom to earth and glorify Him throughout the earth. 

The devil understands your identity in Christ, so this is his favorite battle topic on his favorite battleground, your mind. He has convinced many believers - and maybe you - that we are less than we really are, that our prayers are not heard, that we should be satisfied with very little spiritually, and that we should not expect to see God’s power. He focuses on the negative and our shortcomings: what we are NOT, what we do NOT have, and what we CANNOT do. For this reason, it’s very important for you to know who you are in Christ and the authority and responsibility that goes along with that so that the devil will not be able to convince you otherwise with his lies. As a Christ follower, you are forgiven, made righteous, and seated at the right hand of the Father in Christ. You have power, authority, and access to the very throne of God!

Allowing God to renew your mind each day with His Word and in prayer is key. We must be careful that we are surrounding ourselves with people who speak life, and not with critics and our cultural brokenness that speaks death and keeps us in spiritual bondage.

Being that we are created to be God’s image-bearers (Genesis 1: 26-27), we must look to God’s identity to understand our own identities.

Today’s passage is from Exodus 3, where 2 million Jews are held captive in Egypt. To deliver the Jews from Egypt, God calls Moses to begin his ministry at 80 years old, encountering him through a burning bush that is not consumed by the fire:

When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!”
 And Moses said, “Here I am.”
 “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” Then he said, “I am the God of your father,[a] the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” At this, Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God.
 The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey—the home of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them. So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.”
 But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”
 And God said, “I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.”
Exodus 3:4-12

1. Identity (I AM): the name or title you possess

Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?” God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.’”
 God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.’
 “This is my name forever,
 the name you shall call me
 from generation to generation.”
Exodus 3:13-15

God’s name is “I Am.”  He had no beginning and has no end. He is not dependent on anyone or anything to exist and His love and power are unchanging and independent. He is the un-caused Cause, the beginning-less Beginner.

Our science of the natural world explains that everything in the universe must have a beginning and must come from something, but this is not so with God. He created the natural world and His rules are outside of our universe. God’s kingdom and his ways are very different from our own. That’s why we have to pray to understand how things work in the Kingdom of God because often it is against our ways. Rather than competing with others to get ahead, God says to serve people. Rather than hating and destroying our enemies, God says to love them and pray for them. God says the humble will be exalted and the last shall be first.

The name God gives you bears His own image and His name reveals His presence among us. So when the devil tells you that you are alone and no one cares about you, God’s very name reveals the truth - that you are an eternal being and have a relationship with Him, the endless eternal Being, who is with you and will never leave or forsake you.

2. Authority (I HAVE): the resources to which you have access

Your identity in Christ comes with authority and resources, though the devil would want you to believe you have none. You may experience feelings of uncertainty, anxiety, and powerlessness, but you actually have complete certainty and power, knowing that Jesus has already won and has already conquered death.

“Go, assemble the elders of Israel and say to them, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob—appeared to me and said: I have watched over you and have seen what has been done to you in Egypt. And I have promised to bring you up out of your misery in Egypt into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites—a land flowing with milk and honey.’” Exodus 3:16-17

As a follower of Christ, you HAVE the presence of God and you HAVE access to His unlimited power and resources. As Christ died and rose again, so will we. And what’s more, while here on earth, in Christ we have access to all the blessings of the heavenly places.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ... Ephesians 1:3

3. Activity (I WILL): the responsibilities associated with your name and resources

“The elders of Israel will listen to you. Then you and the elders are to go to the king of Egypt and say to him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us. Let us take a three-day journey into the wilderness to offer sacrifices to the Lord our God.’ But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty hand compels him. So I will stretch out my hand and strike the Egyptians with all the wonders that I will perform among them. After that, he will let you go.

“And I will make the Egyptians favorably disposed toward this people, so that when you leave you will not go empty-handed. Every woman is to ask her neighbor and any woman living in her house for articles of silver and gold and for clothing, which you will put on your sons and daughters. And so you will plunder the Egyptians.” Exodus 3:18-22

God is a God of redemptive promises. He saves, forgives, encourages, and delivers. He understands you. Every title and resource and promise He gives you is meant to glorify Him and fulfill His redemptive promises through you. 

The heart of God is eternal and He created all. He loves you and desires to pass blessings through you, which is much more enjoyable much bigger and better than they could ever be if you tried to hold onto them for yourself. 

In summary, as believers, we are eternal and have the presence of God. We are on earth to fulfill the redemptive promise of God so that people would know Him and walk in the power of his love. Trying to please God in our own strength is a waste of energy, but by faith, we are saved through grace and we are equipped with His own supernatural power to accomplish His will.

As we learn more about our identities in Christ during this message series, may your own mind be renewed to accurately perceive who you really are in Christ and that you may trust the authority and promises granted to you by God Himself!

Who Are You?

This 5-part series examines the identity God has given us and teaches us how to walk confidently in that calling. In Part 1, Pastor Miles discusses who God is and how you were made in God's image so you can think about yourself accurately.

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