Summary: Find out who you really are in Christ in this message on identification.

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who do you think you are?

O2 – 11.05.05

Tonight we’re going to examine the subject of who you really are.

A lot of people are suffering from a case of mistaken identity, especially teenagers. Think about it, it’s during your teenage years that you are discovering who you are and who you’re going to become. And so, on that quest, you could easily be distracted and take a detour towards becoming something you weren’t even meant to be.

A man was looking for a job and he noticed that there was an opening at the local zoo. He inquired about the job and discovered that the zoo had a very unusual position that they wanted to fill. Apparently their gorilla had died, and until they could get a new one, they needed someone to dress up in a gorilla suit and act like a gorilla for a few days. He was to just sit, eat and sleep. His identity would be kept a secret, of course. Thanks to a very fine gorilla suit, no one would be the wiser.

The zoo offered good pay for this job, so the man decided to do it. He tried on the suit and sure enough, he looked just like a gorilla. They led him to the cage; he took a position at the back of the cage and pretended to sleep. But after a while, he got tired of sitting, so he walked around a little bit, jumped up and down and tried a few gorilla noises. The people who were watching him seemed to really like that. When he would move or jump around, they would clap and cheer and throw him peanuts. And the man loved peanuts. So he jumped around some more and tried climbing a tree. That seemed to really get the crowd excited. They threw more peanuts. Playing to the crowd, he grabbed a vine and swung from one side of the cage to the other. The people loved it and threw more peanuts. Wow, this is great, he thought. He swung higher and the crowd grew bigger. He continued to swing on the vine, getting higher and higher—and then all of a sudden, the vine broke! He swung up and out of the cage, landing in the lion’s cage that was next door.

He panicked. There was a huge lion not twenty feet away, and it looked very hungry. So the man in the gorilla suit started jumping up and down, screaming and yelling, “Help, help! Get me out of here! I’m not really a gorilla! I’m a man in a gorilla suit! Heeelllp!”

The lion quickly pounced on the man, held him down and said, “Will you SHUT UP! You’re going to get both of us fired!”

For whatever reason, you could be like this guy, trying to be something that you’re not. You could try to be a jock when you don’t have the slightest idea how to play a sport. You could try to be a nerd when you could actually care less how many neutrons and electrons are in a certain atom. You could try to be a goth when black really isn’t your color. You could try to be a prep when you don’t quite have the benjamins to fill your wardrobe with Abercrombie & Fitch. OR you could be you. You could be who God made you to be, regardless of what anybody thinks.

Now, the question is, who did God make me to be? Did He make me to be a jock, a nerd, a goth, a prep? Who did He make me to be? Well, who He made you to be is not found in your social status or your clique at school. It’s not determined by your height, your weight, your age, your personality or your appearance. Your identity is not found in who you are, but WHOSE you are.

People were constantly trying to figure out who Jesus was. Some thought He was a demon, others thought He was a prophet, still others thought He was a Rabbi, and then others believed Him to be the Son of God.

Even Jesus asked his disciples the question, “Who do people say that I am?”

There was an Easter pageant at this church and as Jesus was entering Jerusalem, one of the characters announced his entrance by shouting, “The King is coming!” One of the kids in the front row jumped up in the seat, looked toward the back of the room, and shouted, “So THAT’S Elvis!”

You see, people were trying to figure out who Jesus was, but Jesus knew who He was. In the book of John, he made several eye-opening statements about his identity.

John 6:35 NIV 35Then Jesus declared, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.

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