The Answer to Every Christian's Identity Struggle
Paul Tautges has served Immanuel Bible Church in Sheboygan, Wisconsin as pastor since 1992. He is also an adjunct professor of biblical counseling and conference speaker. Paul has authored eight books including Counsel One Another, Comfort Those Who Grieve, The Discipline of Mercy, and Brass Heavens. He is also the editor of the popular Help! discipleship counseling booklet series (24 titles). Paul is a NANC Fellow and a Council Board member of the Biblical Counseling Coalition. He and his wife Karen are the parents of ten children. Paul blogs regularly at counselingoneanother.com.
- 2013 Jun 14
As believers in Jesus Christ it is easy to lose our bearings when we forget who we are. This is every Christian’s identity crisis. The answer is for us to recognize the false identities that have robbed us of our joy, peace, contentment, and security and replace them with what is already true of us because of being united with Christ by faith.
For the past year the Holy Spirit has been renewing my mind and refreshing my soul by directing my focus to portions of the Word of God that emphasize who I am in Christ.
The portion where my heart dwelt this morning is the first half of the book of Ephesians. The first three chapters of the apostle’s great theological treatise are filled with numerous realities that we need to consistently claim as already belonging to us. Along with me, reflect on these 42 truths:
- I am a saint, a set-apart-one, set apart by God for God (1:1).
- I am a child of God. God is my father (1:2)
- I am a servant of God. Jesus is my Lord (1:2).
- I am a recipient of every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places (1:3).
- I am chosen by God in Christ (1:4).
- I am predestined (1:5).
- I am adopted as a son (1:5).
- I am a recipient of God’s kindness (1:5).
- I am an object of God’s grace (1:6).
- I am in union with the Beloved One, Jesus (1:6).
- I am redeemed through His blood (1:7).
- I am forgiven of my sin (1:7).
- I am a knower of God’s mystery, the mystery of His will in Christ (1:9).
- I am a recipient and owner of an indescribable inheritance (1:11).
- I am predestined according to His purpose (1:11).
- I am a means of God’s glory (1:12).
- I am sealed in Christ by the Holy Spirit (1:13-14).
- I am a member of Christ’s church, His bride (1:23).
- I am loved by God because of His great mercy (2:4).
- I am alive in Christ, with Christ (2:5).
- I am raised with Christ (2:6).
- I am seated in the heavenlies with Christ, awaiting the full experience of the riches of His grace and kindness (2:6-7).
- I am saved (2:8).
- I am the workmanship of God (2:10).
- I am [re]created in Christ for the good works God has already prepared for me (2:10).
- I am no longer dependent upon the flesh (2:11).
- I am no longer excluded from God (2:12).
- I am no longer a stranger to God (2:12).
- I am no longer hopeless (2:12).
- I am no longer without God (2:12).
- I am no longer far away from God (2:12).
- I am brought near to God through the blood of Christ (2:13).
- I am at peace with God, no longer at war (2:14).
- I am a member of one body in Christ (2:16).
- I already have free access to the Father (2:18).
- I am a fellow citizen of God’s household, kingdom (2:19).
- I am built upon Christ and His doctrine given through the apostles (2:20).
- I am a stone in God’s temple (2:21).
- I am in the Spirit (2:22).
- I am a steward of the gospel of God’s grace now revealed (3:2-5).
- I am a minister of God’s grace in the gospel (3:7-8).
- I am a part of God’s eternal purpose (3:11).
All of this is already true of me because I am in Christ. Hallelujah! What a Savior.
A Great Laminated Wall Poster: Who I Am in Christ