Have you ever watched the show Who Do You Think You Are?
A celebrity embarks on a journey through their lineage to find out the secrets their ancestors held, in an effort to learn who they are today.
I love watching that show, even if I don't know who half of those celebrities are. Just the process they go through, the documents and stories they uncover and how they fit in with history makes it fun to watch.
But this week, we read something that should completely blow our minds: Our past doesn't have to define who we are today.
2. Understand the purpose of the law
Most people know The 10 Commandments—the most common ones being don't commit adultery, don't lie, don't steal, and don't murder. When confronted with their depravity and need for a Savior, this is what they reach for.
"I'm not a bad person. I don't steal, I don't lie and I've never killed anyone!"
Then we become saved, and two things happen, either we continue to live by the declaration of the law, "You're a sinner" or we buy into the notion that there is no use at all for the law, misinterpreting the phrase "I'm not under the law, I'm under grace."
When we understand the purpose of the law, things fall right into place, and we realize that we are no longer sinners but saints and that the law still has a purpose today. That purpose is clearly seen in Romans 7.
Paul illustrates for us so clearly in this chapter the importance of the law to reveal our sin. It's the law that revealed to us our own depravity: Our tendency to blaspheme God, rebellion, steal, lie and covet.
But that's where the power of the law ends. All it can do is tell us how hopeless we are, how utterly sinful we are. But it can't save us from our hopeless sinful state. All it can do is lead us to Jesus.
And once we begin identifying with Jesus, we're no longer sinners, we're saints. We're free from the law—not to do what we want to do, but to live obedient devotion to Christ and His Word.
The purpose of the Law is to lead us from our old identity to our new identity in Christ.
3. Accept Your New Lineage
When you received your new identity in Christ, you didn't just receive a new name on a blank piece of paper. Your new identity comes with a new lineage.
God is your Father; you have been adopted into an entire spiritual family, and this new lineage comes with royal privileges.
Romans 8:16-17a says it this way, "The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ..."
This is our new family!
And we're not just step-children in the family of God. We're 100 percent bona fide children of God and heirs of God—we have an inheritance.
The celebrities that research their ancestry on the show Who Do You Think You Are do so because they sense this hole in their identity.
They want to know who they are, so they go back into their ancestral background to discover who they are today.
But as Christians, our ancestral background won't answer these questions. Who are ancestors were doesn't define who we are.
Who Jesus Christ Is Defines Who We Are
And even more than that!! Who Jesus Christ is sets us free from the bondage of our parent's alcoholism, our father's abusive behavior, the sexual addiction that runs in our family, the rape or sexual abuse we endured, the abortion we had or our drug abuse—all that stuff in our past and our family's past is gone. It's dead. It's buried.
And we've risen with Christ to a new life!
Rosilind Jukic, a Pacific Northwest native, is a missionary living in Croatia and married to her Bosnian hero. Together they live with their two active boys, and she enjoys fruity candles, good coffee and a hot cup of herbal tea on a blustery fall evening. Her passion for writing led her to author her best-selling book The Missional Handbook. At A Little R & R she encourages women to find contentment in what God created them to be. You can also find her at Missional Call where she shares her passion for local and global missions. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google +.
This article originally appeared at rosilindjukic.com.
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