Christmas At The Movies – Elf

Pastor Jason Burns

December 8, 2019

Identity: The truest thing about you.

In Christ

140  //  35   //  11

Identity determines behavior.

Who you are determines what you do.

Ephesians 1-3 is Identity

Ephesians 4-6 is Works

Behavior flows from identity.

The Early Information Factor.

The Often Information Factor.

We find identity in our successes and failures.

Ephesians 2:1-9  //  As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.

Failures: You are not who you were.

Successes: You are not what you do.

In Christ, your identity is given, not earned.

Philippians 3:3-8 NLT  //  We put no confidence in human effort, though I could have confidence in my own effort if anyone could. Indeed, if others have reason for confidence in their own efforts, I have even more!

I was circumcised when I was eight days old. I am a pure-blooded citizen of Israel and a member of the tribe of Benjamin—a real Hebrew if there ever was one! I was a member of the Pharisees, who demand the strictest obedience to the Jewish law. I was so zealous that I harshly persecuted the church. And as for righteousness, I obeyed the law without fault.

I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ.

When we miss this and put our identity in what we do, it leads to:

  1. Pressure to perform
  2. Fear of failure
  3. Constant comparisons
  4. Wrecked relationships
  5. Fatigue and frustration

Ephesians 2:13  //  But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.