“Of making many books there is no end”—Ecclesiastes 12:12. I always thought this verse referred to how many books could be made, not to the book-writing process itself. Now, having had the challenging experience of putting together my own book, this verse has new meaning.
I felt compelled to put into writing what God and many brothers and sisters have taught me concerning the fascinating topic of spiritual identity.
What is spiritual identity? It is the biblical truth that God dwells in us through the Spirit of Jesus Christ, and through that indwelling, He is able to change us from the inside out. This God indwelling and Spirit filling works to fully carry out the purpose and meaning in life that God designed for us.
As believers, our fundamental nature is identified with God and His Spirit. Therefore, it should not surprise us that God identifies us with spiritual words and phrases that we would not normally apply to ourselves. Our spiritual identity, by grace, is now wrapped up in God’s very person.
Though I do not consider myself to be a gifted writer, the biblical concept of spiritual identity and its implications have impacted me with such life-changing force that I have been compelled to share them with others. They have taken my mind and spirit higher than the heavens and seated me with the Lord of glory, Jesus of Nazareth, and I do not believe that I have ever fully come back down to earth. Outward circumstances have not been able to penetrate Christ’s take-over of my heart, though many things, people, and circumstances have tried.
I have invested many years reading, listening to, studying, testing, praying, memorizing, and meditating on God’s Word and in fellowship with Him. Over this time, I have found that God has no problem speaking through His holy Word. It says things about Christians that are so glorious and mind-boggling that, at some point, the spiritual seeker must wrestle with the question—do I believe all this or not?
For me, a young man from a Jewish upbringing, the answer to this question was not expedient nor easy, but the truth was plastered all over the road to God. It turns out that a relationship with Him is the goal and the destination. Who would have guessed? And that relationship has every answer to every question we need to know this side of eternity. Not just ethereal, idealistic questions about man’s existence, but practical questions of how to live a life of power and love.
Before receiving Jesus into my life, I was like Matt Damon in The Bourne Identity, face down in the ocean, left for dead, totally unaware of who I really was. Then Jesus revealed Himself, and through Him, my true spiritual identity began to take shape.
Spiritual Identity contains 16 characteristics of who Christ is in us through the power of a Spirit-regenerated life. Each characteristic is a wonder, a promise, a God-view, an infinite truth, an irrefutable foundation for the believer. By taking each characteristic in its given order, we can build layer upon layer of truth. I encourage you to study each chapter carefully, prayerfully, and with a studied fellowship of like-hearted souls.