Session 7: Gospel Identity

Previous Discussion

  • Who God Is

  • What He Has Done

Leads us to this discussion

  • Who we Are—A new creation in Christ, the old is gone the new has come. 2 Cor. 5:17. We are talking today about this new Identity that we have in Christ.

  • What we Do

  • Who we Are

Matthew 28—The Great Commission

  • Verse 16, they worshiped Him, but some doubted.

    • Worship is submission of all of ourselves to Jesus. The Jews knew that there was only One true God and to worship Jesus was to say that He is the one true God.

    • That some doubted is encouraging to us—because even they doubted.

  • All authority in heaven in earth has been given to me—Who am I? This is who I am. Know that I am God, I have authority for I am God. If I tell you to do something, you can do it confidently because you know who I am.

    • Let the truths of the Gospel speak to the doubts in your heart

  • Go therefore and make disciples of all nations baptizing them into the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you, and lo I am with you to the end of the age.

    • I want you to establish others in their new Identity before you call them to obey me.

    • In the bible, when are people renamed? Baptized into the name of the spirit—means to be submerged in dye and coming up a new color—like our new identity in Christ, a public unity and declaration of our identity with Christ. Just as the Father and Son are unified, let us be saturated with the Spirit. People are renamed in order to indicate your new identity and show what he will do through you.

Baptismal Identity—(Father)

  • Who God is—Father. We were children of wrath

  • What He has Done—sent His son to die for us, the children of wrath

  • Who we are—Children of God, family as we are brought into the salvation of Jesus. Dearly loved by God when you were his enemy. If you are his beloved…

  • What we Do—If you are his beloved, you will Love Others as Family (just as he loved you)

    • And so…

      • Is there someone that you are trying to change, that they are your project? Why not begin by loving them like family—not contingent on the reality of their change.

      • We need to be continually saved and redeemed to love people. I have learned that we often make excuses not to love people. We were jerks to God. But people don’t appreciate what I do for them!

        • Do you think we give God all the adoration and praise he deserves for loving us, creating us, giving himself up for us?

        • But people that I love don’t treat me well, so I should stop, they treat me like a doormat.—what about Christ? How much more can you be stepped on than on the Cross, mocked. Jesus asks the father to forgive them for they know not what they do. In order to follow Him, we have to give up so much—willing to give up everything to love people like he did.

        • Just to be clear—we can’t just give people everything they want, sometimes withholding is love. We don’t give our kids all the candy that they ask for—and not giving it is good.

        • Visited their neighbor in the hospital that was mean to them. We paid for her van to be fixed, because that is what we would have done for family. She started to become part of our missional community family before she even heard the gospel.

Baptismal Identity—(The Son)

  • Who God is—The Son

  • What has He Done—Serve and Give His Life

  • Who we are—Servants of the King

  • What we do—Serve the Least of These

  • Who God is—the Son.—In Matthew’s gospel, Jesus is described as the King. The son did not come to be served, but to serve. The king of all kings, the creator…he shows up and he is in the form of a little baby in a feeding trough. The King of the universe, Jesus came in humility—a king to emulate. Jesus moves in and no one takes notice for 30 years. He just does everyday work, a carpenter. He learns what it is like to be a man of God—Jesus went to earth from Heaven, he submitted himself to the trial of life. Jesus humbled himself because he knew we would never do it on our own. He had to show us how.

    • Jesus does not say, as king, give me what you have so I can rule. He says that we have nothing and he will give us everything that we don’t have. I will give you what you don’t have so you can be how you were made to be—you can be in a kingdom where everything can be had for free

      • But not really free, because Jesus died for us. That is the price he paid.

  • Serve the Least of These

    • Sheep and Goats—To the goats: depart from me, you never knew me. If you really knew me, you would have loved and served the least of these.

      • I was made naked and killed so that you could be clothed in glory and life. If you know that, then you will do it unto others…whatever you have done unto the least of these you have done unto me. Love these people so that they can experience the kingdom in their life.

    • Give them a tangible expression of the rule of God through the restoration of community, family, home, body, ETC. Let what God did for you break your heart.

Baptismal Identity—(The Holy Spirit)

  • Who God is—The Holy Spirit. Acts 1:8. Wait for power on High, when you receive it, you will be my witnesses.

  • What He Has Done—Sent by the Spirit

  • Who we Are—Missionaries—sent by the spirit. You will be given words. See Acts. You are indwelt by the presence of Jesus, you can preach as He preached, do the miracles he did. Your preaching, empowered by the spirit can open their hearts to Jesus.

  • What We Do—Proclaim Jesus

Don’t make this mistake…

Don’t make a missional community a to-do list. Make it a baptismal identity, one of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And then say: “Because of who you are in (symbolized by) the baptism of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit you will live these ways with the spirit of God—it will Jesus that is living your life. He is the one who loves, He is the one who serves, He is the one who speaks.”

  • Clearly, training in walking in the spirit will be necessary.

Questions for Reflection

  • 1. Of these three identities, which one comes most naturally for you in terms of what you believe and which ones are hard for you to believe about who God is and what He’s made you to be now in Christ?

  • 2. Ask yourself as an MC, who is God sending us to, to love like family and how might we start to love them like family?

  • 3. And, how could we begin to serve them tangibly and bring tangible expression to how Jesus has served us?

  • 4. Take some time to begin to pray together that God would give you the opportunity for a gospel door to be opened for you to be able to proclaim Jesus and ask Him to fill you with His Spirit to enable you to speak the gospel boldly with His words and His power.