The dictionary defines identity as the aggregate of characteristics by which an individual is recognized by himself/herself or others. If you do not have a beginning, how can you identify yourself with something that is “zero”. Every human being has a point of reference: the first is your parents and the other One is the very God who formed you out your mother wormed. Concerning the earth, your parents or any significant person will be your point of reference. But as you are an immortal and a spiritual being, God is your ultimate point of reference. Your identity is in God, the One who deposited in you a part of Himself which formed your spirit. (Gen.2:7)
Therefore identity is defined as an aggregate of characteristics or a measuring yard stick by which you or others recognize you. Therefore we cannot recognize ourselves if we have no parents or a heavenly Father who is our Creator. We have affinity to our parents in nature and to God in the spirit and both are necessary on the planet earth. The natural birth precedes the spiritual. (Jn.3:8)
God is the point of reference to all things whether animate or inanimate according to Gen.1:3-28; 2:7 & Col.1:17 revealing the creation of the universe and mankind. You have to know where you came from to impact the world and for you to be used of God to touch His creation. You cannot do much if you have no genealogy that dates back to your parents, grand-parents, Adam and ultimately God, the Maker of all things.
Self-image or self-worth is very important naturally and spiritually for our existence here below. Our level of self-worth determines how we handle every area of life. Our life, joy, fulfillment and peace will never rise above our level of self-worth. Every abiding positive or negative emotion in life is rooted in our self-worth or image.
The heart of one’s ministry will be determined by his level of worth. The way we treat others, the level of respect and kindness we yield is a direct reflection of self-worth. If our self-worth is based on the finished work of Jesus, we are free to be a servant. We can quickly and easily respond to any leading of the Lord. We can place others ahead of ourselves. We can not only set others free to fulfill their call; we can joyfully serve them as they do. The minister who does not have a Bible-based self-worth will use others to build his own worth. Rather than being a servant, he becomes a tyrant, a manipulator or just a “user” of people. Ironically, most of the manipulation that takes place in the ministry is considered to be acceptable ministerial ethics.
Self-worth is a process that begins with identity. Self-worth that is not based on identity will be based on performance, accomplishments or some other carnal factor. It will be negative, temporary, self-gratifying and destructive. There will be positive emotions of self-righteousness when we accomplish certain feats, but negative emotions when we fall short.
God created us with a need to identify with others. There is nothing at all wrong with that need. Yet, if that need is not met through a loving relationship with the Father, it will dominate and destroy us. We will look to every natural source for identity. Because we have fallen prey when the tempter said, “If thou be,” we have also fallen prey when he said, “If thou will.”
When looking for someone with whom to identify, we want to find someone who believes in us. A faulty New Covenant theology prevents us from looking to God for that acceptance. Therefore, most people look to any other available sources. Since we do not believe we are righteous, holy, and unblamable based on the finished work of Jesus, we do not see God as totally accepting us.
We, like Jesus, must go to the Word of God to determine who we are and how we relate to God. We cannot allow ourselves to embrace any opinion concerning our identity and standing before God that is inconsistent with the finished work of Jesus.
This is Satan’s most common attack against man from the garden and until the second coming and it seems to go undetected. Satan does not want man to believe his standing with God. He wants us to feel lowly, unworthy, unacceptable, etc. He wants man to have NO SELF-WORTH.
Throughout Jesus’ entire life, He was continually challenged about His identity. From the Mount of Temptation to the cross, the words, “If you are,” were hurled like fiery darts to undermine His trust and reliance upon the Father.
Every demon, every religious leader, unbelieving followers, and even family members continued to coerce Jesus into proving His identity and authority by His performance. “And when the tempter came to him, he said, “If you are the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.” Matt.4:3. “Then came the Jews round about him, and said unto him, “How long dost thou make us to doubt? If thou be the Christ, tell us plainly.” Jn.10:24. “You that destroy the temple, and build it in three days, save yourself, if you are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” Matt.27:40. “If thou be the king of the Jews, save thyself.” Lk.23:37. “And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If you are the Christ, save yourself and us.” Lk.23:39.
In his early ministry, Jesus’ own family doubted Him. “His brethren therefore said unto him, Depart hence, and go into Judea, that thy disciples also may see the works that thou doest. For there is no man that doeth any thing in secret, and he himself seeks to be known openly. IF YOU DO THESE THINGS, show yourself to the world.” Jn.7:3-4.
At one point, His family came to the place He was ministering. They did not come because they believed; they thought He was crazy. In Mk.3:31, while He was teaching, Jesus’ mother and brothers tried to get Him to come out and speak to them. His refusal to do so seems very rude until we look at Jn.7:5 which states, “For neither did his brethren believe in him.” They did not believe He was who He said He was. They probably came to “straighten Him out” which is why He did not respond.
Then, as it is today, it was the issue of identity that created the greatest religious fury. “I and my Father are one. Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shown you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me? The Jews answered him, saying, “For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makes thyself God.” Jn.10:30-33. It was the fact that Jesus identified God as His Father (daddy) that was blasphemy to them. He derived His identity from His Father.
The religious world hates the concept of identity apart from religious works. When believers grasp the finished work of Jesus, they are free from the control of those who would use them for their own faltering ego.
Natural identity with our or any other person of equal significance is limited in scope and power in the spiritual realms. The Creator, as God the Father formed our outer parts which we call the body out of the dust of the ground, but what gives this lifeless structure the animation and locomotion it has is not from this earth. The spirit of God was imparted to the molded clay on the divine table and it was animated. This breath of God which is the spirit of God was responsible for the inner man. (Gen.2:7, Job.33:3-4)
This is the identity of humanity in God as He has deposited Himself in the man whose physical parts was formed from the dust of the ground. Every human being therefore cannot get away from the presence of the Living God because a part of Himself which is divinity was deposited in mankind. This is the reason for Jn.3:16 and why God and Man are inseparable in the spirit except by man’s refusal to the overture of God, His Creator. When it comes to the refusal of man to allow God to reign over him by his choice, there is nothing that God can do in that instance since he has rejected the rulership of God over him. (1Sam.8:6-7 & Jn.1:10-12)
When you believe that you came from God via your parents, you are empowered to live the life you are meant to live which has been assigned to you by the Almighty God. Both the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ through God’s spirit bear the testimony that you are the sons and daughters of the Living God. The authority of God which is also the Son’s is behind you as you live your life here on the earth. (Acts.1:8) You are secured in your Father’s love and your self-worth is intact because your identity is in God even as Christ’s was secured in His identity with the Father. (Jn.14:10-14, 15-27)
God is a constant and immovable Being who is the Creator of all things humanity included. If you have to condition the identity of man to God, you will have to have faith or belief, because it takes faith to trust in God as your Maker in which you are rooted/anchored and grounded without being shaken by the constant errors of mankind.
Gen.2:7 is the reference point for all mankind because it stated how man came to be. God gave of Himself to the sculptured, lifeless image on the divine table and man became a living being just like His Creator. Man is part of God and the more humanity creates a wedge between this union, the more will mankind be confused of his identity.
The origin of mankind is very essential to humanity’s identity in life. If you believe that man came from man, apes, monkeys or chimpanzee, you will make a monster of man and beast. By that assumption, we make a god out of them: apes, man, monkey and chimpanzees. Since we believed that mankind and beast were the source of our existence, mankind will have a distorted image of himself and the origin of man.
Everything in life has a beginning and if we link our beginning with all things that were created rather than God, we are doomed as a human race. If we cut off God from being the centre of our universe, we are left with mankind dominating their kind and are going nowhere. The end of man is absolutely disastrous and woeful.
Acts.17:28-29: We are not from man and beast, but from the living God, the Creator of the human race according to Gen.2:7 and in God we live, move and have our being. We are the offspring of God.
Roms.1:17: The righteousness of God is revealed in the Gospel (vv.15-16) in faith and from faith to faith. Faith, belief and trust are necessary ingredients to believe in the Gospel and the just shall live by faith. You cannot waver in your identity and a double minded person is unstable in all his ways.
Rom.14:8: Our identity is in God and whether we live, we live unto the Lord and whether we die, we die unto the Lord. Whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s. We belong to God and let no one tell you anything contrary to this fact.
2Cor.5:5-8: Our identity is with God and we are confident knowing while we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord. We walk by faith and not by sight.
Gal.2:19-20: We live unto the Lord and our identity is in God. We are crucified with Christ, nevertheless we live, yet not us, but Christ lives in us and the life which we now live in the flesh, we live by the faith of the Son of God who loved us and gave Himself to die for us. We are eternally linked with God.
Phil.1:21: As Christ is forever linked with God the Father, even so are we linked with Christ and thus forever connected with Him. Therefore, for us to live is Christ and to die is gain, because we shall be with Him forever and ever.
1Jn.3:16: We are God’s and a part of His undying Being is in us and that is why He loved us with an everlasting love. God cannot abandon Himself. He laid down His life for us and we ought to lay down our lives for the saints, because God is in them as well. Our identity is in God and we are forever linked with Him. 1Jn.4:9: The love of God was manifested towards us, because God sent His only begotten Son to us in this world in order that we might live through Him. The eternal life of the Father God which entered into Adam at the point of creation is in us too and hence 1Jn.3:16 to create the connection with Christ and God the Father.
- Gen.2:7: God gave Adam and us a part of Himself which made him a living being.
- Jn.3:8: We were created by God and in Adam we fell into sin, but in Christ by the spirit of God, we have been recreated in Christ and born of God so that our identity is again secured in God.
- Col.1:17: Christ is before all things and we are in Him by the intension of the Father. He is the Alpha and the Omega.
- Gen.1:26-28: God made us in Adam and gave us all the lower creation to rule over them, but to serve one another in Christ who came to show us how to serve and not to be served. (Matt.20:28)
- Matt.4:3: Satan came to Him in order to rattle His identity demanding a proof of His Sonship by performance.
- Jn.10:24, 30-34: The question of His identity with Father came up again, but Jesus had already told them that He came from the Father God. He told them that I and the Father are One and for that the reason they killed Him.
- Matt.27:40: His death was directly connected with being the Son of God and to this they asked Him: “If you are the Son of God come down from the cross”.
- Lk.23:37-39: One of the thieves that was crucified with Him also brought out the question of His identity with Father: “If you are the Son of God, save us and yourself”.
- Jn.7:3-4, 5: His brother did not believe who He said that He was. “I am the Son of God”.
The following scriptures testified to the claims that Jesus Christ was killed because He identified Himself as the Son of God and that was His crime and He was sentenced to death because of it. Mk.3:31, Jn.3:16, 1Sam.8:6-7, Jn.10:10-12, Job.33:3-4, Acts.1:8 and Jn.14:10-14, 15-27.