Into Practice . . .

Identity . . .

Romans 1:23-27 NLT

[23] And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles.

[24] So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies.

[25] They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.

[26] That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other.

[27] And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.

Reflection . . .

Let’s remember that verse 23 sets up the following verses. Instead of worshipping God, they chose to worship other things that they made into their own gods.

Sexual and gender identity is a complicated topic these days, but at the core, it is nothing new. Sin takes on different forms depending on the context and culture, and so we need to remember that at the core of our whole beings is the issue of identity. As christians we need to ask ourselves, “What is our identity in Christ, as human beings made in God’s image?” People who have yet to believe in Christ still ask the same question, “Who am I as a human being?” Without getting into psychological nonsense about not even identifying as a human being, well, we’ll leave that for more qualified folks to tackle.

We identify with what or whom we worship!

If we are enamored with a celebrity star, we identify with the things that they do, say, and have. If we are caught up in the fanatical sport of racing, we identify with all that has to do with racing. If we can’t seem to get enough drugs, alcohol, and dope, we can only seem to identify with being able to use them. If we are focused on being something or someone other than we are at present, we then identify with what we think we need or want. These are all issues of identity. They all have to do with finding something for what is lacking, namely Jesus Christ. Yet, so many reject the Good News because they’d rather continue in their identity with whatever it is that is filling that void within them, and holding them captive. These things that provide identity are the gods that these people have been turned over to because they refuse to believe the truth. It’s subtle and they are, as verse 27 says, suffering within themselves because if it.

With whom do you identify?

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