Summary: Who we are meant to be as shown by the book of Ephesians
Who Do You Think You Are?
Series: Becoming Who We Are
Brad Bailey - January 12, 2014
It's a great big new year so we're going to start with a great big question:
Who do you think you are? That is, what is your ultimate identity? How would you finish the most basic statement: "I am _____________?"
As you ponder that little question, I want to suggest that...
Life is generally lived without ever answering that most fundamental question.
Our lives become a long process in which we become attached to various ways of seeing ourselves that don't really answer who we really are.
It starts when you’re little. Were you the first-born? Were you the baby in the family? What were you like? Were you the funny kid? Were you the chubby kid? Were you the athletic kid? Were you the arty kid?
What nicknames did they give you? Did your parents have a nickname for you? Did your friends have a nickname for you? Was it a good nickname? Was it a bad nickname? How did they see you, and subsequently, how did you see yourself?
As we continue forward in life and we hit the teen years...the ones we often blank out because they were so confusing. You hit junior high or middle school, you have no idea who you are. All of a sudden, you’re in a new school surrounded by people trying to find their place...and you discover that what you look like really matters... the clothes, hair, the height. We wonder: Am I one who is part of the crowd that I want to be a part of or always on the outside looking in? And we have new authority figures with different ideas about who we are ...or at least who we should be.
You hit college and all of a sudden you’ve got an opportunity to completely reinvent yourself. We think it's finally time to define who we really are...as we begin to make our own choices about moral lifestyle... and begin to take up a degree and career path.
And then perhaps, one day, you get your career job. Then it consumes all of your identity. “Now I know who I am, and if I can succeed and thrive in this vocational path, that will define who I am.”
And if we get married...what we thought was going to help us become who we want to be...doesn't turn out to be so simple...because they seem to have their own ideas.
If we become parents...that often becomes a mixture of taking away some of the old identity while giving us a new one.
> And we become identity givers who are still not sure who we really are.
We look at others to define us...and ultimately we are reduced to some complicated social exchange of needs.
We look down at the ground of our productivity and we become human doings measured merely by our output.
We look within...and we become self absorbed and ultimately self-consumed.
Today... we are going to look to God. I believe that God...as our creator sees that apart from Him...we are lost trying to define ourselves by temporal traits. We are looking at the fallen condition and trying to define ourselves by mere descriptions.
We’re going to spend the next several weeks letting God answer this question as expounded upon in the Biblical Book of Ephesians.
But first...take a quick look at Genesis 1:26-28
Genesis means “beginnings.” It’s the first book of the Bible because it’s the book of beginnings. And there, we find the beginning of everything, except for God, of course, because he is the Creator of all things. And there we find the beginning of our identity.
Genesis 1:26-28 (NLT)
Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like ourselves. They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground.” 27 So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. 28 Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it.
And here’s what the Bible says:
“Then God said, ‘Let us.’” There’s an allusion there to the Trinity: one God, three persons, us.
“In our image, after our likeness.” I want you to see, that’s identity language. Who are you? God says, “I’ve made you in my image and likeness.”
> That’s your truest most original identity. Human life was created as a bearer of God's image on earth.
We are created as a reflection of God...meant to be mirrors of God in the created world.