Now, when I write about those who don't know Jesus, it will seem harsh, because in reality it is harsh. One of the verses that stands out with me is Isaiah 66:6, "Hear that uproar from the city, hear that noise from the temple! It is the sound of the LORD repaying His enemies all they deserve." It seems to me that when the time comes for the LORD to deal with His enemies that it will be so severe He will not even let His own children watch. This is more than harsh. This is terrifying. It should not be anything anyone would want to face. But some will face it. Why?
When Adam and Eve disobeyed God they died spiritually. They became separated from the Spirit of Life. They became spiritually dead. They became by nature objects of the wrath of God, worthy of judgement. As a result, the whole human race became by nature separated from the Spirit of Life and objects of wrath worthy of judgement. Jesus said to all of us in John 8:44a, "You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father's desire." I don't believe that when Jesus spoke this that He was wanting to insult or degrade. I believe He was stating a fact. We are the result of the work of Satan in the Garden of Eden that caused all of us to rebel against God and be separated from Him. That is our identity. It doesn't matter the color of our skin or our social or economic status. Our identity is that we are of our father the devil facing judgement. That's who we are.
But Jesus is the remedy. He came for the purpose of providing hope where we have no hope, peace with God where we had no peace. A good future when we had a horrible future. He came to give us a new identity.
Jesus went to the cross for the purpose of receiving that judgement for us on Himself. To pay the penalty for our sin and to take it out of the way so that it would be, before God, as if we had never sinned. And then to credit us with His performance. As God's Son Jesus never sinned. That's why He was able to rise from the dead. Death could not hold Him because He was sinless. He took our sin out of the way and wants to credit to us His perfection. Do you want that from Him? Do you want Him to take your sin out of the way, credit His righteousness to you, adopt you as one of His children and give you a sure future with Him? Ask Him right now and He will do it. Romans 10:13, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." Then you will belong to Christ, and 2 Corinthians 5:17, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" If you ask Jesus to save you from judgement, then you will become a new creation. You will have a new identity. You will then be a child of God, no longer facing judgment.
Now, for those of us who are already in Christ, who have already asked Jesus to save us from judgement, we need to come to more of an understanding of who we are in Christ. I know that in my own life, and in the lives of those I talk to, we have a lot to learn.
I believe the sins and issues in our lives stem mainly from not understanding our identity and what God has done for us in Christ. Below, I'm going to list some of the truths about us, and would like to encourage you, along with myself, to become well acquainted with these. We have a lot of negative thoughts about ourselves and believe them. We need to displace the untruths with the truth of God's Word. Paul tells us in Romans chapter 12 verse 2 that the way to transform our lives (or to have victory over the sins in our lives) is to renew our mind. We are new creations in Christ. The things that used to be true of us are no longer true. But before I list those I would like to deal with the most basic, foundational truth that you and I need. That need is for a love that does not fail. Proverbs 19:22a, "What a man desires is unfailing love;".
Will God's love ever fail you? Is it possible to lose that position you have in Christ and as a result no longer be in a position to receive God's unfailing love? Doesn't God say that He will meet all of our needs in Christ (Philippians 4:19)? This is our most basic need, and I believe God has already fully met this need, forever, in Christ. I know there are some who preach we can lose our salvation, but I don't believe the Scriptures teach this. In Romans 8:37-39 Paul tells us that nothing in all of creation can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. I know there are some who would say, "except you." I don't know if I would get into the habit of adding to what God has said. It doesn't say "except you," in this passage. In John 10:28a Jesus says, "I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish." I was reading online, "Eternal Security of the Believer," by Dr. Harry Ironside, So He says, “I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish.” He puts no conditions around that promise, “They shall never perish.” The word “perish” is in the middle voice, so that if rendered literally in English, you would have to make two words of it, because we do not have a middle voice. The words “perish” and “destroy” are the same in Greek. “I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never destroy themselves.” So, since God promises to never leave us, since God says nothing in all of creation will be able to separate us from His love that is in Christ Jesus our Lord, and since Jesus said He will not allow us to destroy ourselves, then what we have is God's love that will not fail us. That is our most basic need that God has met for us in Christ.
So from that foundation we need to counteract the negative, untrue things about ourselves that we've been taught or the devil or the world system, or others, want us to believe about ourselves. Now I'm going to list below some of the truths in Scripture about who we are in Christ, and hope that you, along with myself, will take maybe one of these a day and meditate on it. And I believe that the victory we are hoping for in our lives will be seen as a result of our transforming the way we think. And for those who have just asked Jesus to save them from judgement, these truths are true of you as well. Meditate on them. God has done a great thing in your life.
WHO I AM IN CHRIST
I am God’s child John 1:12
I am Christ’s friend John 15:15
I have been justified Romans 5:1
I am united with the Lord (one spirit) 1Cor.6:17
I am bought with a price; I belong to God 1Cor.6:19-20
I am a member of Christ’s body 1Cor. 12:27
I am a saint Eph. 1:1
I have been adopted as God’s child Eph. 1:5
I have access to God through the Holy Spirit Eph. 2:18
I have been redeemed and forgiven Col.1:14
I am complete in Christ Col.2:10
I AM SECURE
I am free forever from condemnation Rom. 8:1-2
I am assured that all things work together for good Rom. 8:28
I am free from any condemning charges against me Rom. 8:31-34
I cannot be separated from the love of God Rom. 8:35-39
I am established, anointed and sealed by God 2Cor. 1:21-22
I am hidden with Christ in God Col.3:3
I am confident that the good work He has begun in me,
will be perfected Phil1:6
I am a citizen of heaven Phil 3:20
I have not been given a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a
Sound mind 2Tim 1:7
I can find grace and mercy in time of need Heb 4:16
I am born of God; the evil one cannot touch me 1John 5:18
I AM SIGNIFICANT
I am the salt and light of the earth Matt 5:13-14
I am a branch of the true vine, a channel of His life John 15:1,5
I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit John 15:16
I am a personal witness of Christ’s Acts 1:8
I am God’s temple 1Cor 3:16
I am a minister of reconciliation for God 2Cor 5:17-21
I am God’s co-worker (1Cor 3) 2Cor 6:1
I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realm Eph 2:6
I am God’s workmanship Eph 2:10
I may approach God with freedom and confidence Eph 3:12
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens Phil 4:13
The lists above come from research done by Neil T. Anderson. He has written several books, two that have been very helpful to me: "Victory Over the Darkness," and "The Bondage Breaker." Following are a few more that I have discovered in 2 Corinthians. Search the Scriptures. There are more that God wants us to discover.
God comforts you in all your troubles. 1:4
Our hope is firm in Christ. 1:7
God will continue to deliver us. 1:10
You will be boasted of in the Day of our Lord Jesus. 1:14
All of God's promises are yes in Christ. 1:20
God makes you stand firm in Christ. 1:21
God set His seal of ownership on you.
God put His Spirit in your heart to guarantee what is to come. 1:22
God always leads you in triumphal procession in Christ. 2:14
You are the aroma of Christ. 2:15
You are ministers of a new covenant. 3:5
You reflect the Lord's glory.
You are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory. 3:18
You are God's minister. 4:1
You carry the gospel of Christ. 4:6
You will be raised in the presence of Jesus. 4:14
Inwardly you are being renewed day by day. 4:16
God built an eternal house for you in heaven. 5:1
The Holy Spirit is a deposit to guarantee you what is to come. 5:5
You are in Christ.
You are a new creation.
Your old nature is gone. 5:17
God did this.
You are a minister of reconciliation. 5:18
You are an ambassador of Christ.
God makes His appeal to the world through you. 5:20
Jesus, though rich, became poor so that you could be rich. 8:9
God has richly blessed us.