What or how do you identify yourself? Seems a simple and obvious question but the subject of identity is becoming an increasingly complicated one. There was as time when we found identity in things given or passed to us by nature, environment and our lineage. We were born a boy or girl to a family who gave us a name and heritage. These identifiers were inescapable and unchangeable. However today people are of a different opinion on these matters. Today, men and women advocate the right to choose identity in terms of gender, race or otherwise. But, is our identity subject to choice? Can we really choose who we are?
The word “choice” indicates a decision. We love the idea that we have the right to decide matters of importance for our own life. We want to decide what we will be when we grow up, who we will love or marry, where we will live, how we will spend our time and money. We want choices and if such is infringed upon will demand or fight for the right to have them; or at least the perception of choice.
But do we always have a choice? Are there not times when choice is simply a perception? If you are born male could you ever truly choose to become a female? If you are born white could you ever choose to be black? Or if you are born poor is there always a genuine choice to a path of riches? There are certainly moments where we have choices which affect the rest of our life but knowing when these moments actually exist could very well be key to whether we live in a rational faith or one of sheer madness.
ONE TRUE CHOICE
With regard to our identity, there is certainly one choice we have if life offers no other; we choose whether or not we will believe and trust the story of Christianity. We choose whether we will believe and entrust our life to Jesus Christ. And in this one, actual choice, a man or woman will genuinely choose an identity. This is not an identity regarding sexual preference or gender but a much deeper and spiritual one. A man confronted with the facts of Christianity will choose whether to die to everything that has created his present identity in order to take up an entirely new one; so new, that Jesus referred to it as “being born again.”
HAVE YOU FOUND A NEW IDENTITY IN CHRIST?
Have you moved from sinner to saint? Have you traveled from the realm of the dead to life? From darkness to light? From guilt and shame to forgiveness? From outcast and rebel to child of God? Have you become new?
Money, prestige, position or any other measure of success will only alter identity you currently have
The Apostle Paul wrote that in Christ “All things are made new.” Are you in need of a new life? So many answer yes but attempt to find this new life in a diet, work out program, job or even a new spouse. Money, prestige, position or any other measure of success will only alter the life and identity you currently have. Even should you “choose” a new gender you never really change who you are as a human being. There is only one path to such a profound change and that is through faith in Jesus Christ.
This is the great scandal, promise and hope of the Christian faith. A person might come to Jesus with all of their sin, wickedness and filth to find forgiveness, holiness and a spotless new beginning. This does not mean that Christians are perfect from the moment of their initial faith in Jesus but they are forgiven; their sin and faults are dealt with through the cross. They are no longer identified by their sins and faults but the forgiveness and grace of God through Jesus.
HAVE YOU MADE THE CHOICE?
Have you made the one true choice regarding identity this life will ever offer you? Have you decided what to do with the story of Jesus? Have you decided whether or not you will have faith in Him? Until you do, every other choice you make will only shuffle the deck of your present existence. Until you choose Jesus, you will never experience a truly new identity and life.
If you have made the choice to have faith in Jesus, never lose sight of your new identity; never be tricked into believing you are anything other than what Jesus says about you! You are redeemed, a child of the King, saved, spotless, holy, loved and new!