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Published on August 19th, 2017 | by Zach Philip

Your Identity Changes Everything




“We shall never find happiness by looking at our prayers, our doings, or our feelings; it is what Jesus is, not what we are, that gives rest to the soul.” — Charles Spurgeon

Who are you?

If someone came up to you and asked you that question, what would you say?

Are we students, writers, soccer players, or cellists? Or are we as Christians something completely, radically different?

Who We Are Is Not About Who We Are

All those things that “define” you are not who you truly are!

Your identity is not wrapped up in whether you were nice to your little sister yesterday. Getting bad grades doesn’t make your identity “dummy;” nor does being able to play piano like Mozart make your true identity “pianist.”

Your self-worth has nothing to do with you. At all.

Your identity is ultimately not in your friends, your parents, your siblings, your talents, your stuff, or anything else in this world.

Your true identity is not in something…but in Someone.

Your identity is set in the gospel. Your identity is in God who made you.

What It Means to Have Your Identity in Christ

We know that we are children of God, but practically, what does this mean?

1. We are chosen (Ephesians 1:4-6).

The Founder of the universe knew us before we knew ourselves. And not just that, He chose us! He knew we hated Him; but in spite of this, God sent His Son to die a criminal’s death — for us! He specifically chose and saved us for His glory and because of His great love.

2. We are redeemed from slavery to sin (Ephesians 1:7-10).

We are redeemed and forgiven. God paid the price for our sin with His Son’s blood (Hebrews 9:22b). We are set free from our former master, Sin, and no longer condemned (Romans 8:1).

3. We are loved (Ephesians 2:4).

He loves us not for any good He saw in us. Jesus died the most painful death possible to rescue ungrateful, depraved God-haters so that we could be set free to live for the praise of His glory (Romans 5).

4. We are alive (Ephesians 2:4-5).

Before Jesus saved you, you were dead. Not sick. Not “needing some coaching.” Dead. We were dead in our trespasses and sins. But God woke us up…from the dead!

5. We are created for good works (Ephesians 2:10).

Why did God send His Son to die, redeem us, and make us alive and perfectly holy in Him? Ephesians 2:10 tells us why. He freed us from our sin for good works. The only thing that will ever satisfy us is glorifying God. As the Westminster Catechism says, “Man’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy him forever.”

6. We are bound for heaven (Ephesians 1:11-14).

We are no longer destined for hell. Because we were saved and given Christ’s righteousness, we are granted heaven, a joy-filled everlasting life with our Savior.

How Our Identity Transforms How We Live

We’ve talked about who we are because of the gospel. How does this transform how we live?

1. We aren’t slaves to people pleasing.

We don’t place our worth in what others think of us. We’re set free and live for the King. We know that God loves us and our worth isn’t in what others think of us (Galatians 1:10).

2. We aren’t slaves to sin.

Christ’s blood set us free from our sin so that we can live for Jesus. Until we reach our Home, we will continue to sin. But we aren’t slaves to sin anymore. We’re alive in Christ and slaves to Him (which is ultimate freedom!). (See Romans 6:6-11.)

3. We can rest in Christ.

Because of Jesus’ perfect sacrifice, we can find rest in Him, knowing that our identity is secure in Him.

4. We live for Jesus.

God loved us by saving us and because of this, we love Him (1 John 4:19).

Our identity is rooted in Christ and what He has done for us. His love for us is constant.

He died and rose to set us free from our slavery to sin to experience true freedom and satisfaction by glorifying God with our lives.

“What is your only comfort in life and in death? That I am not my own, but belong—body and soul, in life and in death—to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ.” — Heidelberg Catechism

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About the Author

is a 14-year-old homeschooled student from Illinois. He’s passionate about blogging about the gospel at ZachPhilip.com. He’s currently enrolled in the Young Writers Workshop and is co-authoring a fantasy novel. He also loves playing guitar and piano, biking, and spending time outside with his friends (when it’s less than 74 degrees).



  • Naomi

    Great article, full of truth. This is so refreshing – thank you!

    • Zach

      Thanks Naomi!! That’s awesome to hear – especially when you’re typing on a computer by yourself for hours :)

  • KatelynS

    Amazing truth in this article! Thanks for the encouraging words, Zach!

    • Zach

      Thanks so much Katelyn! I’m really glad you enjoyed it :)

      • KatelynS

        Hopefully we’ll read more from you?!

        • Zach

          I hope so :) I’m actually outlining a new article that I plan to submit to TheReb, the working title being Your Calling Changes Everything, or how to live in light of the gospel and our identity.

  • Piragi

    Great article! Keep on writing!

    • Zach

      Thanks so much!

  • Thank you, Zach! This is right on target; so powerful and needful in our generation. It’s easy to forget where our identity truly lies.

    • Zach

      Thanks Moriah!!

  • Jason

    YAY!!!! Zach posted an article :-) Great job, Zach. Awesome post!

    • Zach

      Thanks so much Jason!!! I know, so excited. Thanks for helping me edit it :)

      • Jason

        Yeah. Of course :-)

  • Great article….been struggling with self-worth because of relationship things….but this was nice.

    • Zach

      So glad to hear that Joye!

  • Anna

    Awesome article, Zach! Thank you for this reminder! Great job! :)

    • Zach

      Thanks Anna :)

  • Heather C.

    That was excellent, Zach! Good job. :)

    • Zach

      Thanks so much Heather!!

  • Sara Barratt

    Great job, Zach! I enjoyed reading it! :)

    • Zach

      Thanks Sara!!

  • Amazing work, Zach! :) I enjoyed it so much and I can’t wait to read more from you.

    https://thenarrowroadforteens.wordpress.com/

    • Zach

      I’m so glad to hear that! Thanks for subscribing, too :)

      • Zach

        I subscribed to yours as well. Looking forward to reading your posts!

        • Thank you so much Zach, always happy to gain a new follower! :)

          • Zach

            Definitely :)

      • Your welcome!

  • Theron St. John

    Zach, a superb post! I love how you link how our identity in Christ transforms our lives. When we understand our identity is to rest in the gospel, we will rightly see our purpose for life (to glorify God) and how we ought to live our lives (as those who are not their own). Thanks, brother!

    • Zach

      Thanks so much Theron! That’s so true.

  • Amazing article, Zach! Thank you so much for sharing this here. Identity is something a lot of teens struggle with, and this article was very helpful to me. Thanks again :) Can’t wait to read more articles from you!

    • Zach

      Thanks so much Ashley!!

  • Andrew B.

    Awesome reminder man! Our church just talked about identity, so this is really in sync!
    “Who before do, why before what.”

    • Zach

      Thanks so much Andrew!! That’s awesome :)

  • Kiley Cooper

    This is great! I really enjoyed reading this and it really made me think. It was really helpful!

  • Maria-Simona C.

    YES YES YES. I absolutely love how this was written–every amazing point of our identity in Christ (straight from the Scriptures!) laid out in such a crisp, raw form!

    I also needed this reminder about how my identity and hope is all in the Lord, and everything else coming after. I’m starting school again in a few weeks as a new transfer student, and of course I’m getting that stereotypical (but well-meaning) piece of advice over and over–“Just be yourself!”. It was getting annoying, until I read this article. THANK YOU for the reminder that as I’m going into this new environment (where my faith could be easily swayed), I NEED to be grounded in my identity in Christ and KNOW what I stand for as a follower of Him. Being in the presence and knowledge of Jesus makes me comfortable with being myself–the quirky, bubbly girl He created me to be.

    Thanks for the inspiration and reminder, Zach! God bless you :)
    (Also, the manner in which you present the Gospel in your writings is great–I know God’s going to use this talent for great things for His glory!)

    • Wow, that’s seriously so awesome!! Thank you so much for the encouragement :)

      • Maria-Simona C.

        You’re so welcome!!! 😀

  • Great article Zach! My favorite book of scripture, Ephesians. You did a very good job of getting your points right from the verses of Ephesians 1 and 2. Those chapters are one of my go to places when I don’t know what exactly to read. There’s always something new there to find. Or there’s always something great to reminded of. Thanks for writing, and keep unpacking God’s Word.

  • Nenkinan Deshi

    Great Article Zach. Thank you

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