Genesis 1:27 (ESV) So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
My first college English class was taught by a feminist. She was so committed to the identity of womanhood that when submitting a paper all personal pronouns must be he/she or his/her when relating to a person in general. When the gender was not identified it was to be written as such. All through grade school, I was instructed to use “he” for undetermined gender. It was a radical change and caused many rewrites to satisfy the instructor. She was passionate about womanhood and equality for the female gender. Well, there is a new shift in the modern culture to eliminate gender altogether. It began with public restrooms. In fact, in Berkley, California, there is a new push to change things like “manhole” to “maintenance” cover. The city council voted unanimously to revise the city municipal code with gender-neutral language. Dozens of terms will be revised and the pronouns “they” and “them” will replace “he” and “she” with the new ordinance. I pause here. I can sense those on the edge of their seat expecting a political argument. I will not debate. I believe it is important to open the eyes of the believer to the underlying scheme of the enemy at hand.
I am and you are created in the Image of God. It doesn’t matter who you are. Man, woman or even if you identify as transgender or gender neutral. You are created in the image of God. Period. It doesn’t matter what pronoun is used. You have an identity assigned by God to your person. It would be easy to focus on a platform or conform to the culture of the world. The enemy of the human soul is attempting to create a huge identity crisis in all mankind. The division between church and state widens but not because God desires it to be so but rather believers lose sight of the human soul and engage in political banter. You are a Child of God. Your gender is secondary to the fact that God has claimed you as His Own. Religion has a way of getting in the way of one’s relationship with the Living God sometimes. Right and wrong established by God’s Law form doctrine that produce habits and establish some form of control when the truth is everyone has fallen short of the Glory of God and I am pretty certain we all sin every day. There is no hierarchy to sin. All sin is abominable to God. What is the solution to the attack on identity?
Acts 17:26-30 (ESV) And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, for “‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, “‘For we are indeed his offspring.’ Being then God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of man. The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent…
Are you confident in your identity? As a believer, I live and move and find my being in Jesus Christ. Alone. The world doesn’t define who I am. My roles as daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, employee or even Christian are not who I am. My entire existence is defined by Whose I am. I am a Child of God. I am confident in this identity therefore I am not challenged by the world’s push to prove that I am something else. I know who I am. Do you? When you are confident in your relationship with God it will be obvious? I do not have to prove anything to anyone. I live to serve my Father. I am like Jesus about my Father’s business which is first and foremost to love others. To give my life for others. My opinion is not important. My preference really doesn’t matter. The truth remains unchallenged by a lie. The power of truth in our life is confidence.
The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent…
I do not believe this statement is directed at the lost. I believe this command is to us all. The times of ignorance applies to the church, as well as the world. We must repent. Repentance is turning to God. To reflect His Image and our true identity is to become a true reflection of our Father. To become beacons of the Light of His Love comes first through repenting and figuring out just who we are in Christ. I am a Child of God. He desires us all to repent and follow Jesus straight into the Kingdom. This begins by assuming our full identity and living confident lives not drawn into debate but driven by love. Repentance is an invitation to live in a loving relationship with God the Father through Jesus the Son.
Why are the churches filled with men and women only? Where do transgender and gender neutral folks go to hear the Gospel? What about gay and lesbian couples? Are they welcome in your sanctuary or met with disgust? The social club of church can be no more. The identity crisis is growing and infecting our world because we do not reflect with confidence our true reflection as Children of God. This is not about tolerance but self-crucifying all-inclusive love. To lay my life down for my brother or sister includes abandoning comfort zones and personal preferences to fully embrace those who need love the most and lead them with a life of love to repentance. However, I must live surrendered to love and others that goes above and beyond what I find acceptable.
2 Corinthians 4:1-5 (ESV) Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart. But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.
The solution to every problem and crisis is Jesus Christ. Sometimes it is hard to understand or properly perceive the boundless and limitless love that He offers. I am not worthy of it but have it just the same. His Mercy and Grace are abundant. Forgiveness never ends. He wants and desires all who He died for to come into a right relationship with Him. Who am I to decide differently? I am indeed the least of these. The one who has failed my Lord and Savior countless times yet His Love for me is unshaken. His Pursuit of me unending. I am the one who He has left the 99 to recover time and time again.
We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing.
When I choose to love only those who I find lovable, I am tampering with God’s Word. To openly state God’s Word and live contrary to it is to live a lie. If our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who need it most. My insecurity is not of God. It is with bold confidence in the Lover of my soul and my identity as a Child of God that I can love others. All others. I cannot discriminate because Jesus does not discriminate. I cannot decide who is worthy because His Grace makes us all worthy. To live for Christ means that I must die to my own opinions to fully embrace the Truth and live by it.
There is a difference between tolerance and true love. I do not have to share the same opinion of others to love them like Jesus. I do not have to engage in certain behaviors or support their cause to love them completely. Jesus is our example. To love like Him is to lay down our life for them. I am wrecked by this. I am undone at the thought of my own transgressions. I don’t understand these ideologies but I do know that God’s Love for me is equal for those who have lost their identity or are seeking to find it. I must examine my own heart. I am not to get caught up in political agendas but live out God’s Agenda. To be a Light of His Love in the darkness. To reach for those who have fallen. To share with those who are lost. To help those who are broken. Even those who I don’t agree with…
I passed my college English class (ENC1101) with an average grade. I was a young Christian who rather than having meaningful discussions about the Love of God with my radical teacher chose to engage in constant debate about her humanistic views and political platforms. Mission failed. We will not change the world and its downward spiral. I am not called to do this. God’s Heart is for the people. Jesus died for human souls. I am called to share the Gospel, spread God’s Love generously, lead others to Jesus, and to abound in Kingdom works. I am not called to judgment but surrender and service. I am a Child of God. I know who I am. I know Whose I am. It is from this place that I am able to solve the identity crisis of those around me. With His Love…
Colossians 1:15-20 (ESV) He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.
For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.