In these next couple of weeks, we are going to explore our identity, the key question we ask ourselves all through our lives is: who am I? We’ll start our journey tonight in the beginning - When God created Man and Woman in the story in Genesis, it says that God called them GOOD Before sin, we were created Good. God made us good God says you are good. God made you in his likeness, he made you to look like him, sound like him, think like him. Genesis 2:25 Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame. But something changed. The man and the woman rebelled against their creator and sin came. Adam and Eve were told not to eat the fruit from one tree. But they rebelled and chose to take it, believing that they would achieve independence from God. Genesis 3:7-11 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. because of sin we try and cover our shame in something else - cover it up with a champion hoodie or a good job. we focus other people’s attention on the things covering us so they don’t see our dirty nakedness. FIG LEAVES - fake counterfeit identity we put up. We hide behind a mask because we don’t want people to truly see us What are you hiding yourself behind today? What are you covering yourself in? When we don’t know who we are, we attach ourselves on to things that seem more solid than our foundation. Like a fig leaf we quickly grab to cover our nakedness, or a
cloak made of another’s skin, we find things to hide ourselves behind, and make us feel a bit safer.
These are worldly identities- the school you go to
the suburb you live,
the car you drive,
the way you choose to present yourself. We find identity in culture around us, music we listen to,
clothes we wear.
We find Identity in our successes, we find identity in our failures.
Too often we are placing our identity in the things we cover ourselves with. God wants to restore us back to good, so we can be naked, and good.
8 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”
10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked?
who told you you were naked? who told you there is something wrong with the way you are?
you told you that you need to hide yourself in some other covering?
SIN makes us ashamed, Sin makes us dirty
We were never designed to feel shame, or to live with shame. Shame is because of sin. Maybe it’s not even your sin, but you carry shame because of someone else’s sin against you
God wants you to be free from shame tonight.
Every human being has a deep need for belonging
every human being needs to know they belong somewhere. we all do.
be it a family, our clan, our tribe, our land, our suburb, our group of friends that we have had for years and years our church family people, relationships make places homely, give us attachment, a feeling of safety and nourishment. home is good for the soul. The other thing every human needs is a chance to become Every one of us have a deep God-designed need to grow, learn, work, contribute, help, give, serve, become somebody. become who we are called to be to fix problems around us to live a purposeful life. God made us all like this, an inherit desire to become. to give. a calling. Adam and Eve lost so much when they rebelled from God. They were ashamed and hiding, but then they had to face the consequences. The Story carries on, after they had been caught in their shame, they had to face the consequences “23 So the Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. It was in that moment that man and woman lost everything. They lost their belonging They lost their home They lost relationship with the one that made it home.
They lost their sense of belonging somewhere
They lost their opportunity to become.
Man and Woman lost this as their sin drove them out of the place in which their purpose was.
They were called to be gardeners, but because of their sin, they were cast out to a dry place with no garden to tend.
sin stripped them of that opportunity, how could they become now?
Sin is so costly. It rips everything out of our hands.
But there is hope.
Romans 5:6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7 Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—
17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!
18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.
21 The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.
sin leads to death, God killed animals to clothe their shame, displaying to Man and woman the pain caused by their sin
Sin leads to death
Jesus died for our sin to be covered
In Gods mercy he covers our sin with the cross of Christ
But in his grace he takes it one more step and restores us to our former goodness. No need to hide in shame anymore he completely transforms us.
___________________________BAND UP ________________________________
God has rescued you from sin, through Jesus making things right. God restores what sin has taken away.
God takes away your shame
He washes away your sin
Through Jesus you will have belonging, you have family, you have a father,
you have a home.
4. Through Jesus you will have an opportunity to truely become who you are called to be. he empowers, and restores you to the original design, where he looks at you and says “it is good”
Through Jesus you can be good.
God wants to restore your goodness.
you are not too dirty for Jesus to clean You are not to broken for Jesus to heal you are not too lost for Jesus to find
My Salvation TESTIMONY
Jesus is saying, come to me, come back to the garden.
⁃ come back and belong with me,
⁃ find out who you really are, who you always were.
⁃ come back and become who I made you to be. Please, can you stand with me tonight and pray a prayer. open up your hands and pray: DEAR JESUS I’M SORRY FOR SINNING PLEASE FORGIVE ME TODAY
RESTORE ME TO YOURSELF HEAL ME FROM SHAME I COME BACK TO YOU BE THE LORD OF MY LIFE I want to belong with you PLEASE GOD BE MY FATHER PLEASE RESTORE WHO I AM CALLED TO BE IN JESUS NAME AMEN Let me finish with this scripture: remember we were talking at the start about clinging on to worldy identities - cool clothing, cool job, nice house. flash car. well we have to let that stuff go now. it’s not who we are anymore. 2 Corinthians 5:16-20 NIV So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here! Altar all