SWS-30 - Living Out the New You - Our Identity in Christ

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Living Out the NEW You:

of Our Identity in Christ  

Ephesians 6:10-17

 

 

 

As we open God's Word to Ephesians 6:10-17 we are looking at the NEW you.

God wants us to know how to live out the new you of our identity in Christ

 

Living Out the NEW You

God explains the realities of the spiritual world in which we live.

Each time we look into the Bible we are immersed in reality, not entertainment.

For years Americans have marveled at the entertainment of shows like Extreme Makeover & Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.

In both shows audiences into the millions of viewers witnessed unbelievable transformations of both people’s appearances and people’s homes.

That was entertainment. Here is the reality.

People can entertain us, but only God can transform us.

 

God the Extreme Transformer

God Himself has always been in the Extreme Transformation business.

Since the Garden of Eden, and mankind’s fall into our:

desperately warped,

hopelessly twisted,

totally ruined condition of sin:

God has been transforming individuals from the inside out.

Some of His most amazing people-transforming makeovers are well known to us from the Scriptures: Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Joshua, Rahab, Ruth, and David for example.

Each of those and other Old & New Testament saints were completely changed, and lived out that change across the pages of Scripture, to the degree that surrendered and co-operated with God’s work within them.

They were each new people in old bodies.

 

New People in Old Bodies

At the moment of salvation, we became a new person.

We were born-again like a baby with no past, only a future.

We became children in God’s family with a bright, new, endless and secure future.

Our past sins were all erased.

Our present and future sins were also forever stricken from our account.

That means that salvation gives us a completely new identity.

 

Salvation: Our New Identity

Salvation is knowing Christ.

Knowing Christ completely changes us on the inside.

Maintaining and living out that change involves constant choices of obedience.

The armor of God is a series of six choices that display our new identity.

Each piece reflects one element of Jesus Christ that we embrace.

Salvation is knowing Jesus as the way, the truth, and the life (Jn. 14:6).

 

Piece-1: Jesus the Truth Holds Together My Life

The Belt of Truth v. 14 Paul spoke of, is the amazing way that God secures our lives when we get saved.

His truth surrounds us.

His truth upholds us.

His truth keeps us from getting tripped up (Psalm 119:67)

His truth keeps us from plunging into the errors of the wicked (2 Peter 3:17).

His truth makes us wise (Psalm 119:99).

His truth explains life to us (Psalm 16:11).

Truth makes us confident, secure, and wise (Pr. 28:1).

His Word is truth and that Word engrafted into our souls saves us (James 1:21).

All that means salvation began each of us living out the new you.

 

Living Out the New You

Salvation means I became a Truth-Loving Person (2 Th. 2:10).

Salvation means I became a Truth-Inhabited Person, when the Spirit of Truth moves within (Jn. 14:17, 16:13; 1 Cor. 6:19).

Salvation means I became a Truth-Liberated Person because knowing the truth sets me free (Jn. 8:32).

Salvation means I became a Truth-Guided Person because the Spirit of Truth who lives in me leads and guides me (Rom. 8:14).

So at salvation I received Jesus as truth, when I believed the Truth about Jesus.

I became the dwelling place of the Spirit of Truth.

But it is a constant choice, and an act of obedience to take up the Belt of Truth.

 

Take up Your Belt

When I want His truth that saved me to keep me, I take up the Belt of Truth.

When I choose to wrap Him around my life, I am wearing the Belt of Truth.

When I do, Jesus the Truth: Holds Together My Life.

He makes me wise, confident, secure, bold, and full of joy from knowing Him.

 

 

Piece-2:  Jesus the Righteous Covers My Life

When I choose to wear His righteousness, then the saving life of Christ opens for me the sanctifying life of Christ.

Wearing the Breastplate of Righteousness v. 14 means that I want to not just have His righteousness planted with in, I want my lifestyle to reflect my contents.

The greatest verse in the Bible (2 Cor. 5:21) explains the greatest transaction.

2 Corinthians 5:21 (NKJV) For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

God made Jesus who never sinned to become guilty of committing every sin I have and ever will do. Jesus was punished for me, took my guilt and paid my debt. That effectively erased any records of my sin. But that isn’t the end of it, only half. The other half is that I have been credited with Christ's perfect life.

Have you ever wondered why did Jesus have to live those 30 years before He was crucified? Why did God take so long? Why didn’t Jesus arrive out of Heaven full grown on one day (Christmas), that would cut out all the silent and unknown years of His life.

Then He could have died the next day (Good Friday).

Then He could have arisen the next day (Easter).

It would pack everything into one amazingly quick event.

Why did God take thirty plus years to get Jesus to the Cross?

It is the necessity of imputed righteousness. Jesus had to live the perfect life we never could as well as die the substitutionary death we so desperately needed.

Clothed in His righteousness I stand, faultless before the Throne.

Just like out of the abundance of our heart the mouth speaks (Mt. 12:34).

So out of what fills our heart comes our lifestyle.

 

Take up Your Body Armor

When I want His righteousness that saved me to keep me, I take up the Breastplate of Righteousness.

When I choose to wrap Him around my life, I am wearing the Breastplate of Righteousness.

When I do, Jesus the Righteous: Covers My Life. Listen to what the founder of the great Moravian missionary movement: Count Nikolas von Zinzendorf[1] (1700-1760) wrote as a hymn for his students:

Jesus, Thy blood and righteousness
My beauty are, my glorious dress;
’Midst flaming worlds, in these arrayed,
With joy shall I lift up my head.

Bold shall I stand in Thy great day;
For who aught to my charge shall lay?
Fully absolved through these I am
From sin and fear, from guilt and shame.

 Jesus the Righteous: Covering My Life makes me wise, confident, secure, bold, and full of joy from knowing Him.

 

Piece-3: Jesus Prince of Peace Guards My Life

Wearing the Shoes of Peace v.15  means finding that the peace with God that salvation brought, expands into the peace of God filling my life.

I walk through life protected from puncture wounds to my peaceful walk (Ps. 37:23).

I want to wear Christ’s peace as my choice (Phil. 4:7).

I want to rest in Him, trusting, learning, and in step with Him (Mat. 11:29).

I find when walking through deep waters He holds me (Isaiah 43:2).

Even when facing the Shadow of Death, we fear not (Psalm 23:4).

The work of Christ on the Cross plants peace within, but the effects of choosing to strap on obediently His shoes of peace gives me quietness and confidence (Isaiah 32:17).

 

Take up Your Shoes

When I want His peace that saved me to keep me, I take up the Shoes of Peace.

When I choose to wrap Him around my life, I am wearing the Shoes of Peace.

When I do, Jesus Prince of Peace: Guards My Life.

He makes me wise, confident, secure, bold, and full of joy from knowing Him.

 

Piece-4: Jesus My Advocate Shields My Life

The Shield of Faith v.16 is none other than my Heaven Father who extinguishes every dart.

I can’t stop those arrows, but He does (1 Cor. 10:13).

Jesus reveals the Father to me (Mt. 11:27).

I trust my life into His care (1 Pet. 5:7).

Each time I am facing an attack all I have to do is call out to my Father (1 Pet. 1:17).

My Heavenly Father always is there (Mt. 6:8 He watches; 1 Cor. 10:13 He is faithful).

My Heavenly Father always extinguishes all of the fiery darts (Eph. 6:16).

He always is pleased when I call out to Him (Lk. 18:7 will He delay long).

Jesus stands at the Right hand of God the Father (Rom. 8:34 who shall bring any charge).

This I know that God is for me (Ps. 56:9).

Jesus ever lives to intercede for me (Heb. 7:25).

He is my Advocate, My Protector who is always there (Mt. 28:20; Heb. 13:5).

 

Take up Your Shield

When I want His presence that that came with my salvation to keep me, I take up the Shield of Faith.

When I choose to hide behind Him as my refuge, I am wearing the Shield of Faith.

When I do, Jesus My Advocate: Shields My Life.

He makes me safe, confident, secure, bold, and full of joy from knowing Him.

 

Piece-5: Jesus My Savior Guards the New Me

The Helmet of Salvation v.17 is the constant reminder of all that Jesus accomplished for me, and has planted within me. When I want to live out what He has done within, I pull on my helmet.

Jesus loved me and loosed me from sin (Rev. 1:5).

Jesus gave Himself for me (Gal. 2:20).

Jesus wants my every thought captivated by Him (2 Cor. 10:4-5).

Jesus wants my mind focused on Him (Isaiah 26:3).

Jesus wants my affections set above where Christ is seated (Col. 3:1).

 

Take up Your Helmet

When I want to live out the wonders of my salvation, I wear the Helmet of Salvation.

When I choose to acts upon the truths or doctrines of my salvation, I am wearing the Helmet of Salvation.

When I do Jesus My Savior: Guards the New Me.

He takes away any guilt, condemnation, hopelessness, uselessness, loneliness, fearfulness, or frustration in my life.

Remembering the work of salvation for me, and in me helps me to desire to act like I really believe all that truth.

 

Holding On to the Truths of My Salvation 

Each facet of salvation defined by those seven great doctrines of salvation, are the keys to walking through life confidently.

The summary of the Helmet could be stated as a series of declarations of why we can’t really ever feel guilty, condemned, hopeless, useless, lonely, fearful, or frustrated again.

But this is only ours if we wear our Helmet of Salvation.

1.    Because I am Forgiven, I never again have any reason: to feel Guilty

2.    Because I am Justified, I will never again have any reason: to feel Condemned.  

3.    Because I am Regenerated, I will never again have any reason to feel Hopeless

4.    Because I am Redeemed, I will never again have any reason: to feel Useless

5.    Because I am Adopted, I will never again have any reason: to feel Lonely.

6.    Because I am Reconciled, I will never again have any reason: to feel Fearful.   

7.    Because I am Sanctified, I will never again have any reason: to feel Frustrated.  

 

Take Up Your Helmet Daily

If you have never tried this, I’d encourage you to start a new dimension of your spiritual life by starting one of the more wonderful spiritual exercises you can ever do.

As you begin each day, one of our greatest privileges is to take up the helmet of the salvation God has given to us.

By faith we please God when we believe what He's said about us.

We need to not live by what others say or have said about us all our life.

Satan is the Accuser and wants us to only remember all the many times we have fallen;

Satan delights in the days, weeks, or months he can keep us condemning ourselves for what we've done.

That is his plan, so don’t fall for it.

Resist Satan as you believe the truth; speak the truth; and preach the Gospel to yourself.

And whenever we fall down, God says to just turn back to Him and repent, confessing our sin immediately—and believe that what God has promised in His salvation.

We are forgiven, justified, regenerated, reconciled, adopted, redeemed, and sanctified.

That makes us precious in His sight, special in His plan.

One of the most powerful habits you could develop is to take these truths about the gift of salvation and rejoice by faith in what God has done and wants to do in you!

Keep this list of what God did in salvation for you in your Bible, at home, on your computer, put one on your mirror where you start your day, and in your car.

Put this truth into your mind as a reminder of what great things God has promised and done through Christ's death for us!

Slowly as you understand and lay hold on these truths a life-changing transformation take place in our minds, and then in our emotions, and finally throughout our entire life as we live each day based on God’s eternal truth.

 

Piece-6: Jesus the Word Feeds & Protects My Life

Jesus is called the Word of God (Jn. 1:1).

The Logos, or the Word, is who He is (Rev. 19:13).

When I learn God's Word and take that same Word that saved me, and hold onto it by faith, it becomes the Sword of the Spirit v.17.

The Word that feeds me (1 Pet. 2:2), saves me (1 Pet. 1:23), guides me (Ps. 119:105), fills me (Col. 3:16): also protects me.

By meditating upon that Word my life is purged, pruned, and sharpened (Josh. 1:8-9).

The holding onto the Word as a sword (Eph. 6:17), I am able to fight the good fight of faith (1 Tim. 6:12).

The Word is the sword that the Spirit can use in my life to defend me against the Evil One.

It is also the sword than can cut away layers of callousness.

It is the sword that can defend me, and refine me.

 

Take up Your Sword

When I want to be healthy and safe, I hold the Sword of the Spirit.

When I choose to use the truth of God's Word, I am using the Sword of the Spirit.

When I take and hold the God’s Word, Jesus the Word: Feeds & Protects My Life.

He feeds my new life (Mt. 4:4), and nourishes and cleanses my soul (Jn. 17:17).

Holding the Word as a scalpel can cut away layers of callousness and coldness towards God (Heb. 4:12).

Holding the Word as a sword can make the Evil One retreat before the voice of God that I cling to and hold.

 

 

[1] Born into aris­toc­ra­cy and wealth, von Zin­zen­dorf brief­ly stu­died law at the Un­i­ver­si­ty of Wit­ten­berg. Tir­ing of aca­dem­ia, he left school at age 19 to trav­el through­out Eu­rope. Three years lat­er, he in­her­it­ed the es­tate of Ber­tels­dorf in Sach­sen (Sax­o­ny). It was there that he per­mit­ted a group of re­li­gious re­fu­gees called the Mo­ra­vi­an Breth­ren to set­tle. By 1732, this Mo­rav­i­an set­tle­ment, named Herrn­hut (the Lord’s Shel­ter) had grown to over 600. This was the birth­place of the Mo­ra­vi­an church, led by Zinzendorf. The Mo­ra­vi­ans be­gan send­ing out mis­sion­ar­ies in 1732, the first two go­ing to the West In­dies. In 1735, a group went to Geor­gia, then Penn­syl­van­ia. They ar­rived in Penn­syl­van­ia on Christ­mas Day, 1741, join­ing a group al­ready there. In­spired by their Christ­mas ar­riv­al, they named the new set­tle­ment Beth­le­hem. It is from this town that the fa­mous Beth­le­hem Steel Co­m­pany got its name. Zin­zen­dorf wrote about 2,00 hymns in his life; the Mo­ra­vi­ans trans­lat­ed ma­ny in­to other lang­uages for use in their mis­sion work.