Classic Christianity – A Closer Look at Your Identity in Christ P45 (06-22-22)
In Christ Jesus You have Already Been Redeemed
Today we are focusing on Redemption. We are learning what that means from God’s perspective. Allow the Holy Spirit to teach you the proper meaning and understand that you have redemption. It is not something you get over and over again. We have it. We possess it. So rest in it by FAITH!
Just as a person’s physical growth is based on proper diet and exercise, so is the Christians’s spiritual growth dependent on regular feeding upon the word of God and application of its principles. With more false teaching, shifting opinions and general confusion in the world than ever before, Christians need a solid foundation upon which to base their beliefs and build their lives. The word of God declares that Jesus Christ is that foundation of truth. With that in mind, let’s now take A Closer Look at Your Identity in Christ.
I think we always do every time we sit down in order to do these lessons. Every time we get through with it why we kind of say gee that was a neat lesson and not the way it was taught but it was neat information because that’s it. What it is, is we begin to search out the wonderful truths that are contained in regard to our identity in Christ. And the truth of the matter is that with religion emphasizing constantly in what you are doing, and that’s what religion does. It constantly is dealing with what you’re doing and what you’re not doing and then how you’re doing it, you know. So within Jesus’ day, say, when he entered in at just the right time, when religion was at an all-time high, and he came to show the hypocrisy of it. But all of it was dealing with what you were doing. He spit on the ground on the Sabbath, and you’re not supposed to do that. That makes mud. He took grain out of the grain fields on the Sabbath. You’re not supposed to do that. So everything was what you should do and what you shouldn’t do, and then how you should do something and how you should not do something.
And it is an interesting thing, a recent newspaper article was out in regard to the Orthodox Judaism that is still going on today in Israel. And you go over to Israel and you will see people dress precisely the way the Pharisees dressed in Jesus’ day. You will see the same traditions being practiced and now there is a terrific amount of research institutes and studies taking place in that part of the country, that is taking the Torah, all of the laws and then making them applicable to today. Because back when they were written, they said they didn’t have elevators and electricity and all that type of thing. So you’ve, you know, under the law, you shouldn’t be able to turn on a switch on the Sabbath because that would be working and in an elevator if you, if you punched a button to go up to the third floor, that would be considered working. So they were talking about all of the extent of the things that they’re going through. About doing voice activation so that you can get on an elevator and save “three” and it’ll go up because that way that’s not work when you just speak “three.” And literally doing those things in order to practice this law, that they cannot keep. Well, it was to that type of thing, and that sounds like the ultimate and it sounds ridiculous, but we in America in modern day Christianity do the same things. It’s just with a different thrust, but we can be equally as legalistic and ridiculous. And it was to that group that Jesus entered in and called them a bunch of whitewash seplacures and said, you’re clean on the outside. It looks like you’re doing everything right, but you’re dirty on the inside and you’re like a cup, it says that’s looks clean on the outside but inside it’s full of filth. And there is none righteous, no not one. And you’ll never be righteous by what you do and what you don’t do. You’re righteous because of what’s inside and there is none righteous. There isn’t anyone inside righteous. So if anyone’s going to be righteous, I’m going to have to pour the coffee. In other words, I’m going to have to fill that. It’s going to have to be me from the outside, entering into you bringing righteousness to you because there’s no way for a cup to produce righteousness. So when we don’t understand those things and are preoccupied with what we are doing, why we don’t know who it is that’s doing it. In other words, I went out and did a good deed. You say, who was it that did that good deed? Well Bob. Well, who are you? Well, Bob did it. No I didn’t ask you, I said, who are you? Well I’m a son of Franklin & Helen you know, that’s about as good as it gets or well. Oh, I’m a Baptist or I’m a presbyterian or Methodist or a Catholic and that’s why I did this because of those things and so all of a sudden you say where did that identity come from? Coming in today, I was just talking to a very wonderful guy that was visiting here from out of town, and I’ve never met him before, but he’s a radio listener. And we were talking and he was getting a little bit about my background and so forth. And he asked what church I belong to. And what denomination I grew up in and this type of thing. Of course, that was all over the place but the one of the churches that I did belong to and served as evangelism director this type of thing. While he wanted to know what that was and I told him, and then he made the statement because he said, how much this training and teaching had done for him but that he made the statement, that I’m doing you know, well I’m still a Baptist. And when I’m saying what I’m saying, please don’t take this as an affront to being a Baptist, but my comment to him was that’s unfortunate because that is not an identity that you’re going to get out of the Bible. The only identity that the Bible gives you is you’re either lost, a son of Adam, or you’re saved, a son of God. There will be no Baptists in heaven. Nor will there be Presbyterians, or Methodists, or Catholics, or Plymouth Brethren. There will only be redeemed, sinners, individuals who have come to Christ by faith. Whose only identity was a natural man, lost, that now is a saved man. Saved, there is no exception to that. There will be no Baptists, Presbyterians, Methodists, Catholics, Plymouth Brethren or anything else in heaven. Just people. And so, is there anything wrong with being a child of God who goes on Sunday and fellowships at the Baptist Church? Not at all. To the Presbyterian Church? Not at all. Is there anything wrong with that? Nothing. But that is not who I am. Please don’t call me a Baptist anymore or a Presbyterian. I’m not that. I’m a child of the Living God and where I go on Sunday does not determine who I am, it just determines where I go.
Like I say, I go to restaurants but I don’t want to be called a restaurant. So it’s just one of those things that we have to come to grips with and I know that that irritates people because their identity if you take that away from them they don’t have any identity. But you see when you realize, no, if you’re truly in Christ and I want to tell you, you can be any one of those identities and denominations and not know Christ from a spook. I was one of those. So I didn’t know who Christ was. I didn’t have a personal relationship with the living Christ, but I was identified with one of those denominations. So what I’m getting at is once I understood I was a child of God, I don’t need any longer to hang on to a false identity, a man-made worldly identity. I don’t need it. I have a new one. And you’re going to learn in life, you can’t take something away from somebody, unless you replace it with something. And the best thing is to replace it and then remove it, not take it away, just replace it and let it fall away, remove it. And so, once I understood, I’m a child of God, I don’t need to hang on to be any one of those things I’ve mentioned. I don’t need to hang on anymore to a psychological identification of being a schizophrenic paranoid manic depressive. Or any of the rest of the things, the syndromes that we hang onto. That’s not who I am. I don’t have that identity anymore. I have a new identity. I’m a child of God. I’m not an alcoholic. Some people come down, say, get up there, do some calls every day. Hi, I’m an alcoholic. Not if you’re a child of God, you’re not. You have got a new identity now and it’s called a child of the Living God. And Bob, if we don’t come to grips with that truth, as to who we are, according to who God says we are when we do something, we’ll never know who it is that did it.
We have been studying through this series on our new identity realizing that if anyone is in Christ, he’s a brand new creation. In other words, I have a new identity. I’m not who I used to be anymore. I’m now a child of the Living God. Now, as a child of the Living God, we have discussed the fact that if you can envision a big circle, and you have now stepped out of kind of space into this new circle. And in that Circle which is called Christ and the New Covenant because Christ came to usher in a new covenant, not an old come that but a New Covenant in that Circle along with you is justification. It is sanctification, it’s glorification. And what did you say? Modification. That means you have modified all of those “ations” are in there. You are righteous in the sight of God, you have been redeemed and you’re a part of the body of Christ. You’re a citizen of heaven, you’ve been given eternal life, you’re totally loved. So it isn’t one of those things where anymore as a child of God, enclosed and enveloped in Christ, Jesus in him and him and me surrounded by the whole content of the New Covenant that I don’t get redeemed anymore. I am. I don’t get reconciled anymore. I am. I don’t get righteous anymore. I’ve already been made that way. I don’t get forgiven anymore. I am forgiven. I don’t get to become more of a part of the body of Christ. I’m already in it. I don’t get more eternal life. I’ve already got eternal life. I don’t earn it and I haven’t worked for it. It’s just there. God can’t love me anymore, and he certainly will not love me any less. So what are you? What does the scripture say? Complete in Christ. What does that mean? You’ve been made perfect in Christ. What does that mean? There isn’t anything else to add. And that’s why it says that in Christ, we have been given everything that we need for life and godliness.
Now, recognizing that fact, this is what frees you from continually going through life, begging God and asking God to do for you what he has already done for you. And if I relize that I’m already a child of God, how dumb would It be for me to be asking him to make me a child of God, if indeed I already am one? How ridiculous it is for me to be saying, Lord, please set me apart when he says, I’ve already set you apart, I’ve already cut you loose, circumsized you from your old nature, from the old guy that you were. I’ve already set you apart. Now, be set apart. I’ve set you apart, now be that way. How ridiculous would it be to say, Oh Lord, please give me eternal life when I’m in Christ and already have eternal life? And that life began the very moment I had the Son. So if I had the Son and he who has the Son, has eternal life. Then why would I ask him for eternal life? If Christ Jesus in that circle says, I have come to live inside of you. Then how intelligent is it to say, Lord, get closer to me. And be like saying to my heart, I want to draw closer to my heart. Well I’m sorry. You’re as close as you’re going to get, you just need to experience it now. Recognize it, walk by faith in it. So we think faith is built by asking God to give me something that I don’t have. Where the reality of it is that faith is resting on what you already have. It is not, I’ve got this big faith, I’m going to ask God for this great big thing and he’ll give it to me and I have faith. No, it’s recognizing that he’s already given it to me now because it’s already mine, rest in it. And what he has given me we have listed.
Now, he has not given me a Cadillac.And so our undue amounts of wealth. So, oh God, please give me wealth and so, all of a sudden, I got wealth; God answered my prayer. I’m sorry folks. Satan can give you wealth.
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We don’t have to worry whether that is God or whether that’s Satan. If you are thinking properly, I’m not thinking about getting stuff from the world. He says that when I’m preoccupied with the world, the love of the Father is not in me. So, why would I be asking God continually for worldly things, when he said, he who loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him and love, not the things of the world? And so here we are thinking that our faith is growing by asking God for worldly things that he said, get your mind off of. And when you get them saying, praise God, well, I don’t think you’re praising the right God. But what I am going to praise him for is being who I am totally loved by the Lord Jesus Christ, a person in whom nothing can separate me from His love, a person who has eternal life. A person whose citizenship is in heaven. A person that has been made a part of the body of Christ. A person who’s been justified by His resurrected life, reconciled by His physical death, redeemed, righteous, forgiven, new creature, those are things I already have. And those are the things that I need to walk by faith in me. And we’re always looking for our faith to increase. And my faith will only increase when the awareness of Him increases. And so we’re always, instead of faith being resting by faith in what we already have, we keep looking at faith as something that we get that we don’t have yet that interests us.
So today in chapter 7, we’re going to talk about what we already have and that is our redemption. We have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. And we’ll start on page 46 in our book, a Closer Look at the Believers Identity.
Now when we see this word redeemed, when we look at it from our standpoint from a worldly standpoint, let’s put it that way. How many of you remember the days when we had Green Stamps? And I think maybe there were gold stamps and there are all kinds of stamps that you used to get whenever you bought something. And after you accumulated enough books of those stamps, what did you do? You went to a redemption, you went to a Redemption Center. And a Redemption Center as a person, was a place that had all kinds of things that you could get with, depending on how many stamps you got. So, if you brought in 2000 books of stamps, why you got a toaster. So what do you do? What is a redemption? I turn in some stamps, worthless things. You couldn’t buy anything with those stamps. Yeah, they were worthless. But to the Redemption Center they had value. So you turned in a bunch of worthless, Green Stamps, and received a toaster. That’s a Redemption Center, used to be called a Redemption Center. Well, when you’re talking about the things of Christ, what took place? Well, we turned in our worthless stamps to God. We turned in all that, we were absolutely quite frankly, worthless to the world when you stop to think about it. Something that’s dying and decaying. We think we’re big deals but it really doesn’t amount to very much. And when you die and all that stuff goes down, you can put it in a little jar. So we’re not really that big a deal, but we think we are. But at any rate, we turn in something that in essence is not worth that much, but the God who made us precious in His sight, so we turn in ourselves to Him and we receive Him. I get something about you. I turn in some Green Stamps, I get something of value, a toaster. I turn in myself and I get Jesus. That’s called an exchange. I have exchanged my stamps for a toaster, I have exchanged my life for His life so that it’s no longer I who live now, it’s Christ who lives. Those Green Stamps cannot make toast, so the toaster makes toast. So I’m saying I need toast. So I’m going in. Get a toaster, so I turn in Green Stamps. I get a toaster.
I cannot, Bob George could not live a Christian Life. I could not change myself. I could not forgive myself and I could not bring life to myself. So what do I do? I turn in that total inadequacy and receive the fullness of Christ Jesus who gave me life and redeemed me out of my sin. Now, I hope that helps a little bit in explaining this word redemption, to buy back and then to set free, Now what we’re we bought from? We were born into this world in bondage to the law of sin and death and God purchased this out of this bondage through the death of his own Son and that was the price that the law demanded. The wages of sin is death and it demanded that death and He took it for us. Now he didn’t purchase us to make us slaves. Again, he purchased us so that we could receive full rights as sons of God.
We’ve given this illustration before but it is worthy of giving again in this country at one time, we had slavery and people brought slaves over from Africa and put people in bondage and chains, and literally kidnap them out of a country and brought the black man over to this country as slaves. And they would have slave markets. And at those markets, they would put a big strong black, man, or black woman, or a black child on that slave block and they would auction them off like a piece of merchandise. And let’s say this one day that this very strong, large, black man was put on tThe auction block and the auctioneer started his routine and the price went up, and it went up, and it went up and it went up. And finally, it got to a point where nobody else could afford it. And the one man made the offer and the man said going going gone sold.
The black man comes off of the of the of the slave block and the man who bought him reaches down, takes the chains off of his legs takes the chains off of his hands, shakes the man’s hand and says, sir go free. Black man looks and says sir what are you talking about? You just bought me. You just redeemed me. You just bought me out of the slave market. In order to put, make me your slave. He said, no, no, no. I bought you out of the slave market in order to set you free. It is for freedom, Paul said, that we have been set free. So when Christ bought us out of the slavery and that’s what the law is. It’s slavery. Whenever you’re under something that you can’t do and yet there’s a punishment for not doing it, you’re a slave to that, and the wages of sin is death. And there was no escape from that, all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. So all are under the death sentence. He bought us out of that in order to set us free in a new relationship with Christ Jesus. That’s redemption. Going back to our story, the slave has been bought off of the slave market out of the slave market, set free from the law of slavery in order, not to go to another law of slavery, but to go to, but to be set free. The man says to the fellow who bought him out, sir, you bought me out of this hell that I was living in in order to set me free? Yeah, yes I did. Why did you do that? Because I love you and because I do not believe that any man should be a slave, I believe a man should be free. I believe we were created by God to be free and so I bought you in order to set you free.
Now, and again, and you did that because you love me? Yes, I do. Well you don’t even know me at all. Yes, I do. I’ve known you since the foundation of the world and I’ve known you and I loved you. And so I bought you. And the man says, sir, I really, I mean, I can go do anything I want to, but what I would really like to do, because I’ve never met a man like this, I’ve never met someone who loved me like this, I’ve never been around anyone who would be willing to pay the price that you paid for me to set me free. I could understand someone paying that price for me to put me on their farm and to work for them because I’m, and I can, I can do a lot for them, but to pay that price to set me free, I’ve never known that kind of love.
And, would you have any objection if I go home with you?
And the man says, no, I would love for you to be with me for the rest of your life if you would like to. And incidentally, I have set you free, but I’ve prepared a place for you at my home, and if you would like to come, and to be my son, I’d like to have you.
And the man again stands in awe and said, I don’t understand this kind of love and I almost want to run from it because I’m not used to it. I don’t know how to handle it. And he says, I’ll teach you how to handle it. Because Bob, we have to learn how to live in freedom. Man has to learn that, we’re used to living under the law. We have to learn how to live free. And so the man says, I want to come and be your volitional slave. In other words, I’m not a slave, I’m your son, but what I mean is, I want to serve you for the rest of my life. And the man says come on, let’s go home. Now, folks, that’s a physical picture of what Jesus Christ did for each and every one of us. He bought us out of slavery, so that we could be set free to make a decision. Am I gonna go my own way, or to follow the one who bought me?
And now in Colossians 1:13 and 14. He said, for He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son, He loves. In other words, He took us home and in that kingdom that we are now in, in whom, what do we have? We have Redemption, the Forgiveness of sins. So let’s again, take a look at the circle. We talked about earlier you’ve been transferred out of this darkness, dangling around out there in darkness into this circle of light, Christ Jesus, New Covenant, redemption, sanctification, justification, all of those things. And in that kingdom, that’s a new kingdom you’re in you have redemption, you’ve been redeemed, the Forgiveness of sins. Now Bob I’ve asked many times. Now, to take a look at this passage again, we’ve been rescued out of the dominion of darkness. So, what does that mean? When we were born into this world, we were born in darkness. That is called spiritual death. It’s dark when you’re dead, and we were brought, delivered into a new kingdom of the Son into Christ Jesus. Who is Light, and in Him, is no darkness at all. So, when I’ve been transferred, out of darkness into the kingdom of the Son, I’m transferred out of darkness into Light into Him, into the light of the New Covenant, and in that new kingdom that I’m now in forever, I have Redemption. That’s possession, and I have forgiveness of sins. So I ask people sometimes, how many of you ask God to redeem you everyday? Get down on your knees at night and say, oh God, please redeem me today. And just in the event that you might not have paid everything that you should have. Please pay it for me. And everybody would say, well, of course not. What I say, you don’t do that? No, of course not. Well, why not? Well, because I’ve already been redeemed.
Thank you so much for tuning in to Classic Christianity, with Bob George. We hope you’ve enjoyed today’s program. We truly hope that today’s message has inspired you to walk a life of faith in the Lord, find more information online at shop.BobGeorge.net. There you’ll also find available CDs, DVDs, and bible studies available for purchase. It’s through your help that we are able to spread the good word of Jesus Christ. Until next time, walk in faith, be good to one another and praise the Lord. Amen.
Stand on the firmness of truth. Don’t keep going back and forth. Thank Him that the forgiveness issue is settled.
Let’s pray together:
- Lord Jesus,
- I thank you for taking away my sins on the cross,
- never ever to see them again.
- Having done that, I now thank you for giving me eternal life,
- through your resurrection.
- I now receive that life.
- And I am going stand in the fact that I am a child of the living God.
- In Jesus Holy name I pray.
All believers are now brothers and sisters in Christ.
3 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.”
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