For many of us, it is easier to believe a lie about ourselves than it is the truth. All of us, left to ourselves, will gravitate towards a lie whether it is an inflated opinion or one that is disparaging.
Because of our sinful nature, we don’t gravitate naturally toward Biblical truth. Statistics say that most of us have quite a negative view of ourselves.
The lies are just easier to believe.
In the lie, I don’t have to change- It’s just the way that I am.
In the lie, I don’t have to work- because it won’t work, I’m hopeless.
In the lie, I can ignore a greater truth of who I am because in my mind the lie is more believable.
At the root of the lies we don’t find Jesus, we find idolatry. In idolatry, we trade the truth of God’s word for a lie.
In Scripture we find an overarching word that Paul uses throughout the New Testament letters to describe believers, “Saint.” (See Ephesians 1:1-2 )
This identifier is placed on us by God at the time of our salvation and it is not based on our behavior, but upon the sufficiency and the supremacy of Jesus and His sacrifice on the cross for our sin. (See Romans 5:6-11)
As a result, we take on that new identity as a saint. The Apostle Paul describes saints with truths that go against everything that our fallen flesh tells us.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, 8 which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight 9 making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ 10 as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. 11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, 12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. 13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Eph 1:3–14). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.
These truths are not easy!
These truths mean that you and I are responsible to put to death the lies of the flesh. It’s not easy to change a mind that has been operating the same way for years. It is hard work! It takes constantly reminding yourself of who you are and whose you are. You will always struggle with temptation, but temptation is not sin. As a saint, there is a way out! (1 Corinthians 10:13)
Work at renewing your mind with the Word of God. Remind yourself that you have a new spirit within you that can resist temptation.
If you need help, please seek it out. We have pastoral care and we have licensed professional Christian counselors that we work with.
As you study Ephesians 1 this week, consider these questions to journal:
- What does this chapter say about my identity in Christ?
- What assurances do the truths of Scripture give me?
- How does this change my outlook, attitude and reactions?
- How does knowing these truths change the way I see the world?
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