Daily Devotions based on the Sermon Series: “STRANGERS in the World”
Week 6 of 7: “Strangers…Am I the only one?”
Full Sunday message, CONTEMPORARY or TRADITIONAL
5 IDENTITIES God wants you to embrace!
1 Peter 2:9 “… you are a HOLY people…”
This phrase comforts us when we have a failure in life or say or do something we later regret. Comparing ourselves to others eases our conscience as we give ourselves a pass and breathe a sigh of relief that there are worse people who have done way more wrong than I have.
It is true, nobody’s perfect. Unfortunately, it’s also easy to say this to God to dismiss or tell ourselves that his command to “Be perfect, as I your heavenly Father is perfect” is an unreasonable demand that no one can live up to.
Yet, the words don’t go away. They ring in our ears. “Be perfect. Be perfect. Be perfect…”
“But, God” I plead, “Nobody’s perfect!?!? How can you expect me to be perfect?”
To which God responds, “I am God. Be perfect!”
We quickly realize the status God demands is one we can never achieve. In fact, it would be more natural for us to embrace the identity we often confess, “I a poor miserable sinner…”
Romans 3:19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. 20 Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.
Like the owner of a theater has every right to prevent you from seeing a movie if you don’t have the proper admission cost, so God has every right to refuse us admission to heaven because we fall short of the holiness he demands. Yet, realizing nobody’s perfect and without lowering the standard of holiness, God, our holy and loving Father did something we could never do.
Romans 5:8 God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
He died because he took our imperfection and made it his own…even though he WAS perfect!
2 Corinthians 5:21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Hebrews 10:14 because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.
YOU have been GIVEN a new identity: HOLY! Because of Christ, you are no longer a poor miserable sinner (although we certainly still struggle with our sinful nature) but a HOLY person of God!
Why does this identity matter? You have been given the status necessary to be in the presence of a holy God! You ARE holy. You ARE perfect!
Apply: What happens when you shift your primary identity from sinner to saint (holy one)?
Prayer: Thank you Father for not lowering your standard of perfection, but rather raising me to meet that standard through your son Jesus. Lead me to enjoy each day knowing I AM a HOLY person! Amen.