Session 6: Living From Your Gospel Identity
2 Corinthians 5:16-17
Paul is in a situation in Corinth where they are judging him by his outward appearance and his action—Paul answers them: from now on we regard no one according to the flesh, we once regarded Christ that way—we regard him thus no longer. If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away, behold the new has come
What is the Old and what is the new?
New—we put our trust in what Christ has done, and who he is.
How should we come to conclusions about who we are?
4 Key Questions
1. Who is God?—Gen. 1:1 In the beginning, God (creator)
2. What has God Done?—God creates. God has created. (Romans 1—we can know the invisible attributes through his creation, through what he has done.
3. Who are we in light of this? Gen 1:26—Let us make man in our image, taking dominion. In his image. Be fruitful and multiply.—we are we? We are created.
4. What do we do?—co-create. What we do comes from who we are. Rulers.
See the flow: (God) creator→(God) created→(Man) created→(Man) co-create.
God is Ruler→God makes Rules (do not eat of this tree)→ we are co-rulers (coregents, likeness, image bearers)→ we rule, take dominion over earth.
Because we are image bearers of God, our lives should glorify Him. We were made to see the likeness of God in each other, and when we do not live this truth, it is extremely hurtful to everyone.
Things go wrong—Gen—Temptation and Fall. The serpent questions God and God’s work. God said that creation was very good, and the serpent said that it was not, and we believed him.
***The serpent reverses the relationship of doing and being in the fall. God said that we were made in his image, designed for dominion and fruitful life (designed, made, BEING)—the serpent, subverting the work of God, say that in order to BE like God we must DO something, namely, eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil…God designs BEING as the fountain of life, the source of what we DO, the serpent says that DOING will make us BE like God.
Serpent says that things are up to us, not up to God. We have to do things to be like God. They eat, and realize they are naked. In that moment, they may have realized that what they could do to be with God would never be enough. They covered themselves, as we cover ourselves with our good works to try to cover our lives and achieve righteousness from good works.
When we try to work into salvation, to work our way to God, we are turned over to our sin. We distrust the work of God and trust in our own work. Lust is looking for a fulfillment in a thing that will never fulfill you. Jesus is the only thing that satisfies. Spiritual disciplines, attending church, religiosity—they will never fulfill you. Only Jesus fulfills.
When we take a good thing and try to make it a god thing…we are committed to sin.
We are hurt so badly when we see others sin because we are designed to see God in each other (Imago Dei)
We always ask, after asking what your name is, we ask what you do…doing over being has seeped into our everyday life.
We have learned so well how to hide from one another, attempting to hide from God. People will always intuitively know that they are not enough on their own.
God: who told you you were naked? God asks who we are listening to instead of Himself. Whose word are you trusting in, and whose work are you trusting in. The serpent’s word and our own work—rather than God’s word and work. Adam blames Eve…we try to comparatively show that we are better than others because of our work.
What are the consequences?
Brokenness in the world. God clothes them in animal skin, covers them with an innocent animal (JESUS picture). God doesn’t say that they just have to work hard enough to get back in…because that can’t happen.
Cain tries so hard to make whatever he does acceptable to God. More brokenness. Turned over to our worship of wickedness.
God calls Abraham from Abram
God calls Abraham to be a father of nations. Abraham means father of many nations—God declares who he is before he does anything—a father of many nations before he even has a child. Abraham trust God at his word, not at his own work.
From faith, for faith—Paul points out that God has always been a God of faith. God gives Adam form and function before he can earn his existence…grace has always been the way of God. The word made flesh is the true image of God, he believes God’s word in a way that Adam and Eve did not. Jesus believes that God is well pleased in him. He resists temptation.
In Christ, things can be how they were before the fall—under the new Adam, who believes God’s word completely. You will be clothed in the very life and righteousness of Jesus. You may rest in BEING God’s child through Jesus’ being and works.
Questions for reflection and discussion
Where have you been looking to your own behavior or doing to define you?
In what ways have you had a hard time trusting God’s word and work through Jesus Christ is sufficient enough to define you? And Why?
How would trusting in God’s better word through Jesus and better work through Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection change how you live today?