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Mistaken Identity

Over the years, I’ve been told that I look and sound like John Maxwell.

Never was this more true than the time I called a new pastor friend of mine and left a message. “Why is John Maxwell calling ME?” he asked his secretary? I’ve since had lots of fun leaving him messages to challenge his leadership style, etc.

Then there was the time a bunch of lovely young ladies in Africa wanted their pictures taken with me...only to find out that I was NOT John. They were sorely disappointed and left immediately...much to my chagrin. Identity...and mistaken identity are pretty important issues.

I would argue that most Christians suffer from a case of mistaken identity. They believe they are what they do for a living. They may believe they are what they do or have become socially--single or married, father or mother, old or young, etc. Some think they are identified by their past such that their testimony focuses heavily on the sins they committed before knowing Jesus.

None of these are correct!

The truth is that we are who Jesus says we are. After all, we belong to Him--don't we (See I Cor. 6:19-20)? The good news is that the identity statements in the Bible--the things Jesus says about our identity in Him--are pretty awesome. In fact, they are downright miraculous.

The biblical identity statements include things like us being seated at Christ's right hand, seen as his friends, holding the title of Ambassador, being without condemnation, and much more.

Dr. Neil Anderson has compiled quite a list of these statements in his books, "Victory over Darkness," and "The Bondage Breaker." I highly recommend reading these books. I also recommend taking the long list of identity statements and reading them aloud once a day for a month. It is amazing how this "retools" our thinking with regard to who we really are! I believe this is literally life-changing.

To that end,

Pastor Joel

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