Category Archives: Image of God

Identity in Christ Course at Grace College of New Zealand

These four sessions were given in 2015 during a preaching trip to the South Island’s Family Conference in association with Grace Presbyterian Churches near Christ Church and in the North in Auckland in two churches and a pastor’s gathering.

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May these simple lectures bless you for embracing who you are in Christ, Bob

Session One https://youtu.be/NKFC2bvmbqo

Session Two https://youtu.be/vy-h9__A1xM

Session Three https://youtu.be/zU0ZyJUBQdI

Session Four https://youtu.be/5R05yMQn5L8

 

Identity: Corporate or Individualistic?

Why are many white Americans less likely to understand how many black Americans are reacting to recent treatment of blacks in Missouri and Alabama? Do the recent riots and killings of police have something to do with identity?

IMG_2057This is a monument of Henry Ward Beecher in Brooklyn where I am preaching this week. He auctioned off slave children for adoption in his congregation to protest slavery. His sister wrote Uncle Tom’s Cabin.

“God cares about systems” (Tim Keller & Anthony Bradley). Abraham Kuyper, the Dutch Prime Minister and Christian theologian, said: “There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, Mine!” Redemption is to be applied in all of culture.

Since our identity includes are common and corporate identity as image bearers of God with the rest of humanity, our identity is not only individualistic but also corporate. We share an ethnic identity and national identity, as Christians share a common identity in Christ. What an individual does effects others. For example, as in Adam all sinned so in Christ (a Jew) all are counted righteous by faith alone (Romans 5). When Achan sinned in Joshua 7, all the people of Joshua’s time suffered for it. In Daniel’s prayer (Daniel 9) he asked for forgiveness from God for his ancestor’s sins.

Any system that excludes or marginalizes others in any generation shares a corporate responsibility and guilt. It was not right for an Evangelical to say to a black slave in the 1800s that “God loves you and has a great plan for your life as a slave.” Germans, who knew and actively oppressed Jews, were responsible and guilty for the crimes during WWII. Yet, so were those who knew and just followed orders or remained passive in that system.

Whites, still in the majority, are less aware of their corporate identity. Blacks, however, deeply sense their corporate identity because they have been a minority in America. Unless Christians in America embrace our corporate identity, which includes our responsibility and guilt for marginalizing Native Americans and Black Americans, we will not understand the times and the issues of contemporary culture.

Repentance of systemic racism and faith in the Gospel with prayer and active restoration of the marginalized is what is required in this hour. Only as we embrace our common Christian identity, which embraces diversity of age, ethnicity, and gender, will we begin to love our neighbor well.

Ask the Father in the Name of Jesus to pour out the Holy Spirit upon our generation in revival. For, He can make all things new and heal our land, but apart from Him we can do nothing.

God ordained the government to use arms to punish evil, restrain wickedness, and protect the innocent (i.e. the unborn), but He ordained the Church to use weapons of Gospel proclamation, prayer, and reconciliation with God and all peoples.

 

I’m Going Back to My Roots

So much for this song. I exercised while it was playing and liked the tune. Actually, i haven’t analyzed it 🙂

In Luke Three there is a heap of identity concerning Jesus Christ. John the Baptist points to Him as the Christ, the Father says that He is His Beloved Son in whom He is well-pleased, and this is followed by His genealogy.

Our roots matter. Our genealogy is part of what shapes our identity. Just as knowing that we are made in His image and that we have been given gender, so Providence shapes us in a family with ancestors, ethnicity, and names.

We are not hurled by chance into the world as radical individuals, who have to choose all this. Rather, we are given names that remind us of how in God’s Providence we are part of a larger story in Redemption. God is redeeming our families for generations to come. He is faithful to our offspring; He is covenantal as He has always been; i.e. Abrahamic promise.

We are not radical individuals. We are named by our parents, and these names remind us of who we are and our roots. We are given ethnic identity. In the end every tribe and tongue shall acknowledge God’s redemption together. Do you know what your names mean? Are you secure about your ethnic identity? Can you tell about your great grandparents, grandparents, and parents enough to tell the next generation? Jesus knew what His name meant, who His ancestors were, and embraced His Jewish ethnicity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pentecostal Outpourings

Passive in the Beginnings of Identity

We are passive in receiving our identity, which is is to say what is so un-post-everything and unpopluar in our Time!

We receive our soul and life’s beginning from God. We are endowed with God’s image, and our gender. Gender is given; we are either male or female. Doctors and nurses name what is true of our health and blood type, etc. Finally, we are given a name.

478337_10151030395801320_882750470_oThis little boy is with his loving father. He was named Gideon, after the Old Testament character in the book of Judges. Names draw forth calling, and today this little boy turned four years old. He received a sword – “a sword for the Lord and for Gideon. (Judges 7:20).”

If we come to Jesus, then we receive a new identity. We are passive in receiving our new identity in the very beginning of Christian experience. We are born again by the sovereign Holy Spirit, declared righteous and forgiven in Christ, and anointed as a saint – yes, even as a warrior. Our Father in Heaven has written our new names in Heaven.

Swap your actual face? It’s a popular Now on phones, etc.

One day your face will radiate with the likeness of the Face of another; namely, Jesus Christ. Changing your face is going to take place by one degree of Glory to the next (2 Corinthians 3:17-18), but you’ll never stop being you. IMG_2595

God loves your face on you. What if He didn’t? Now technology allows us the fun of making it otherwise, but however funny we make it you were meant to bear God’s image a unique way. Your face matters to your Father in Heaven, who gave you your face. You will be changed into the likeness of Christ as you gaze at His beautiful Face.

On the Internet you can see how to do this, and it is popular: MAJOR CHANGES MADE

  1. Easy Face Cropping Process. Now cropping marker can be rotated, resize in X and Y direction differently.
  2. Save Faces: All face is save in Face Store, which can be used while Swapping Faces from Face Store
  3. Multiple Swap: You can choose any face from anywhere and can swap multiple faces in other pic
  4. Edit Cropped Faces: You can edit cropped faces to adjust with photo accordingly
  5. UI is changed “entirely” (visually) now using Material Design
  6. All Bugs Removed

Do you want a beautiful, radiant face? Gaze upon Christ’s Face.

The truth is, as the hymn-writer wrote, “How did His visage (face) languish!” on the cross, but now shines in brightness and beauty above.