So Why Not Say You’re Gay, or…?

 

col-3-hidden-in-christ

…Black, White, Asian or Hispanic??? Or Republican, or Democrat? Or why not say you’re a Millennial, Boomer, or a Gen X’er??? (After all everyone else calls themselves by their age, too?) Why not call yourself ESFJ, or INTJ – for those familiar with the Myers Briggs personality inventory?

Because, simply put but complexly true, according to Jesus Christ and the God Revealed in Him, you are not any of those things! You certainly may exhibit some of those traits but…

 Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life—even though invisible to spectators—is with Christ in God. He is your life. When Christ (your real life, remember) shows up again on this earth, you’ll show up, too—the real you, the glorious you. Meanwhile, be content with obscurity, like Christ.

– Colossians 3:3-4 (The Msg)

According to Jesus, from the Father and through the Holy Spirit in the Apostle Paul, that’s why you shouldn’t identify as just any old “thing”, or even as your own thing! So if you’re struggling with your identity, it is probably because you’ve forgotten, or never knew the Truth God points out  through this scripture:

1.) Your identity is not in some thing (your sexual attraction, your skin color, your political party or age), it is in Someone outside yourself, namely, in Jesus Christ, in God. You’re going to have to look outside yourself in the first instance to discover your identity! You should receive and look to Jesus because your real life is hidden in him. Your true humanity is hidden in him. He is your life! (By the way, what largely remains hidden to you now is the glorified humanity Jesus has for you; the humanity that will never die and is incorruptible. What isn’t hidden is all of the other stuff revealed and witnessed to about Jesus in the bible!)

2.) If you’re going to receive who you really are, you’re going to have to follow Jesus and let him show and tell you. Because he is a Person and you are a person, that means discovering your identity is not static but dynamic, or relational and active. Identity is not a thing that can be discovered in isolation from others (as in “I’m a hermit”). Your identity is a discovery that comes in relationship with Jesus and the God Revealed in Him.

3.) One of the greatest and common places Jesus is pleased to meet you is in the scriptures! Perhaps you, personally, are having more clarity about your identity through the scripture just quoted. It wouldn’t surprise me! This Relational God – Father, Son and Spirit is the one who inspired and left us these books we call the bible through which he would encounter us and witness to himself! If you like reading books, he left you quite a few to catch up on! Lol! If you are getting clarity about your identity through the scripture notice that we went to a passage through which God has been pleased to witness to himself (though He’s NOT the bible!) Through that passage he was pleased to speak to you not only about who he is but also about who you really are!

4.) Notice also that this isn’t a scripture only about you, it’s about every one of us! Because of who we are speaking of, Jesus, the God/Man and One who created and sustains every single person, your fellow human beings also have their identity in Him! Jesus is literally the One Human for all! Pointedly, this means you should seek to see your neighbor also for who they are in Jesus who represents all humans in his humanity, namely, your brother or sister, or neighbor in Christ!

Imagine for one moment how transformed our world would be if we referred to all others as “brother” or “sister” or “neighbor” “in Christ” rather than the things I noted in my first few sentences? Can you see the difference that would make in our treatment of each other? Can you sense the other-centered love in humility that could thrive, and the self-centered pride that could die? Wow!!!

By the way, none of this means that you become Jesus or that he becomes you! No! He will still be Jesus and you will still be distinctly you. It does mean that Jesus intends to share with you his awesome and glorified human nature so you can relate with God and each other in a way that partakes of the divine nature, as one made in the image of his image in Jesus (2 Cor 4:4)! His life reveals what it really means to be human and those who trust him get to participate in that!

Here’s the link to a GREAT read through which I was encountered by God – Father, Son and Spirit and got stirred to write this article:  http://www.livingout.org/why-not-say-you-re-gay-

As author Jonathan Berry writes in his last paragraph:

“We’re often warned of the dangers of identity theft in an increasingly digital age. As a Christian I feel passionately that I don’t want to allow myself to be robbed of the enjoyment of these great blessings, by falsely embracing any other identity. In his letter to Christians in Rome, Paul urges his readers not to “conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2). For me, a really important aspect of that mind-renewal process involves ditching any unbiblical labels and securing my true identity as being in Christ.” (underline emphasis mine!)

Amen!

– tjbrassell

*photo courtesy of rhemafromgod.blogspot.com

 

7 comments so far

  1. jamesnewby on

    Thanks brother Tim. Forwarding this to our members here.

    Hoping you and yours are well.

    ybiC,

    James

    Pastor James Newby

    815-744-6430

    Description: Description: C:\Users\James A. Newby\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\CIC0WQBF\MC910216396[1].png

    Heartland Community Church

    Reconnecting people with God

    • tjbrassell on

      You’re welcome James! Thanks for the opportunity to share the Good News of the God Revealed in Jesus, and who we are in Him, with your congregation! Wow! Yay! 🙂

  2. Steven Sell on

    I enjoyed the read. It is always good to be reminded who you are. Sometimes you get off track so thank you brother Tim for these fine words.

    Steve Sell

    • tjbrassell on

      Hey Steve,

      So true, what you said about good to be reminded! I was reminded of how difficult it is to think of your identity ONLY in relationship to Christ as I wrote it! Thank God, he comes in the Holy Spirit of Christ, bringing Jesus to our remembrance in His determination to love us, and help us love him and one another! Every Blessing!

  3. Tim Shipman on

    Thank you Tim. It is good reminder as James said of Who’s we are, it is such a joy to be reminded of the unity we have in Christ. I was just reading in John this evening and John 17:23 is such a great encouragement in my mind of this very thing, unity in Christ. This vs for me is a reminder that the Father loves me and He loves you just the same no matter what I or anyone thinks of you. I by the way think a lot of you, for you inspire me to dig deep into what My Father thinks of me and others.

    • tjbrassell on

      Thank you for your reply and encouragement Tim! I, too, need to hear the Gospel from my brothers and sisters, and I’m grateful to be affirmed that you sense my distinct, subjective, participation in the Gospel, or love and life of God – Father, Son and Spirit, in His overflowing grace shown and shared most clearly in Jesus! Every Blessing!

  4. dance6032 on

    Thank you, my brother Tim, for sharing this awesome article with us. The second point spoke to me, as did all the rest, “If you’re going to receive who you really are, you’re going to have to follow Jesus and let him show and tell you”. I know this in my head and in my heart, but I need the reminders to help me ‘ditch any unbiblical labels and secure my true identity as being in Christ’.


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