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3rd February 2013
It's not who you are that counts, but knowing who you are. Your identity isn't defined in isolation; it's connected to your history, where you came from and who you're related to. Knowing who are is crucial to living life well and understanding where you fit in and what should be your expectations and responsibilities. Who you believe you are will impact upon your thoughts, decisions and behaviour. Whatever your story, whatever has happened in your life, the Bible tells us something about you that underpins it all.
At the beginning of the Bible we find that God created humans perfect. There was no sin, pain, sickness or death. Adam and Eve were physically and spiritually alive, and even walked with God in the Garden of Eden! They were completely secure, accepted and significant. And that's what God had planned for all of us, but we know what happened next: they sinned, and all that they had was lost. Not only did Adam and Eve die spiritually (and, later, physically), but they also lost their knowledge of God – not about him, but knowing him – and were flooded with negative emotions that they had never experienced before: fear, shame, guilt and rejection.
The catastrophic consequences have affected everyone born since. Is there a way back? Some try keeping rules and good works, believing that human effort can solve the problem. We can try to regain all that was lost in a number of ways – looking for our significance in our performance at work, for security in money and for acceptance in relationships. But the root problem is our separation from God.
Though we can't help ourselves, there is hope. Jesus came to restore all that had been lost. By living as a man – like Adam, physically alive; unlike Adam, never sinning – Jesus lived the perfect life, paying the price for our sin and regaining for us the right to be called children of God. The moment you accepted Christ, you regained the security, acceptance and significance for which you were created!
To download the 'life application' questions and sermon, click here.
Posted by Paul Mann