Psalm 107, Study 4, Loosing Your Identity,
We're going through a series at Church it just happens to be about Nehemiah and the building of the walls (must be coincidence)
Anyway this mornings message =
But when Sanballat the Horonite and Tobiah the Ammonite official, and Geshem the Arab heard it, they mocked us and despised us and said, "What is this thing you are doing? Are you rebelling against the king?"
Anyway so it was about these adversaries of the Jews and how they tried to stop the work of the Lord and mocked and jeered and how our focus can be misdirected and how we can get "demoralised" as we work for God building the walls as He builds the walls
Reference for this study = Jeremiah 29
Now we end with the glance at the book of Jeremiah with this study and go onto the
return and building of the Temple
BY THE RIVERS OF BABYLON
By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, we also wept, when we remembered Zion. We
hung our lyres on the willows in its midst. For there those who carried us away
captive required of us a song; and those who tormented us required of us mirth, saying,
Sing us one of the songs of Zion. How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land?
If I forget you, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning. If I do not
remember you, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; if I do not set Jerusalem
above my highest joy.
The babylonians let the Jewish remnant live in peace in their own houses and the
exiled sons of God were to prosper and so prosper the babylonians
Although they had restrictions and had to live within these restrictions
It reminds me of Paul under house arrest
16 Now when we came to Rome, the centurion delivered the prisoners to the captain
of the guard; but kPaul was permitted to dwell by himself with the soldier who guarded
Colossians 4:18 Ephesians 6:20
A Letter to the Exiles
Jeremiah 29:1 This is the text of the letter that the prophet Jeremiah sent from Jerusalem to the
surviving elders among the exiles and to the priests, the prophets and all the other
people Nebuchadnezzar had carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon
Jeremiah 29:5“ Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce. 6Marry and
have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage,
so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not
decrease. 7Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you
into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”
Imagine being given another name as Daniel,Hananiah, Misha'el and Azariah had been
given other names, having them changed to Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego
Names at that time were important , they had meanings and represented who you were
To have your name changed to a heathen name and also names with meanings such as
"Command of the moon god"
Imagine being in a foreign land and to live amongst a foreign culture
And to submit to another authority such as this heathen nation
And to know that you generation would not live to see the return to Jerusalem ?
And to be told to pray for this city in which you live even thought may go against
your own beliefs and desires
To prosper within this city so that this city would also prosper
To be a sojourner in a foreign land !
Even so the Lord had plans to prosper His people in this place and to give them hope
and a future
THis is what remained ans was the remnant of Jerusalem
At this time they would pray to their God and He would hear them and if they sought
Him they would find Him
Jeremiah 29:10 This is what the Lord says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will
come to you and fulfill my gracious promise to bring you back to this place. 11For I
know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to
harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
Jeremiah 29:12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13You
will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Here they were to submit to the authority of this city and to God above all
1 Timothy 2:2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful
and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.
This was the measure of years in which the people were to be exiled which was 70 years
The full measure of years must come to pass before the people would be released
And in this 70 years the people prospered
FINDING MY IDENTITY
"To Babylon you must go and there you will be rescued; there the Lord will ransom you out
of the power of your enemies."
I am not asking you to remove them from the world but to protect them from the evil one.
They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world."
Have you ever asked the question "Who am I ? "
The world is full of images...false images....
When we are young we might want to project a false image of who we are or who we would
like to be
When I followed bands and famous singers I might have dressed as they did
I find my identity in someone or something
The world is full of searching people, searching for an identity
To be in a group or to be related to an idividual
To be associated with a certain trade or practice
To be part of a family...
It all gives us our identity
"Ooooo you know what I'm likeeeeeeeeeee"
But so many haven't yet found their identity, their true identity
Their real identity , that is "Who They REALLY ARE"
IDENTIFY WITH CHRIST
And once I identify with Christ only then do I find my true identity
And in that I loose my life to find it, I walk in Him, I don't concentrate on the "putting down or the
sacrifice" but I concentrate on Him , in the same way as I don't focus on all the bad stuff thats
happening around me but I concentrate on Him
In doing that all the other things fall into place
In finding my identity in Him I also share in His sufferings
But I don't loose "Who I am" in that , I don't loose my own identity
And this is a barrier to some in that they believe that they will loose their identity
But God can use me and us as we are, our character, our personality and use it in
and through us in a unique way
SOURCE OF INFO =
Evey preacher and teacher that has ever lived uses a myriad of information passed down through
the centuries, the source all goes back to God
But each preacher and teacher is used to pass on that information in a unique way through
their own peronality and character
Their character being transformed day by day to be in the "Likeness of God"
"I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in
the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me"
In this I put down my desires and wants, I lay down my time to draw nearer to Him
I lay down my thoughts and motives so that He can work through me
I do not have to go through "labour" to be born again
But I may have to go through "Labour" to continue
As I cannot die in the flesh and be "Born again" J
4 “How can someone be born when they are old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely they cannot
enter a second time into their mother’s womb to be born!”
A few things that identify as Christian and the life of :
So what do I identify with in Christ ?
I am to believe in or trust Jesus Christ John 3:16
I am to receive Jesus Christ into my life and heart John 1:12
I am to follow Christ and continue too Matthew 4:19
In that , I am to STAY joined to Christ John 15:5
In this I will come to know Christ John 17:3
Then I will learn to love Jesus Christ Ephesians 6:24
And in this obebedience comes Hebrews 5:9
Which will glorify Christ Philippians 3:3
When I identify with Jesus He calls me "a Friend"
"I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead,
I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to
I am a Child of God
"If we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share
his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory"
I AM AN EXILE
In this I am likened to the exiled of God in a foreign land being given a new name known only
Being a sojourner, a traveller, submitting to an authority under Jesus
And even in this I am given a new name
"To him who overcomes, I will give...a white stone with a new name written on it, known only
to him who receives it"
Even though I am not of the world , I am in the world and God has made me as a unique
individual and vessel to be used for His glory, as a craftsmen being used to prosper the place
in which I am
In this the land from whence I came is in its "sabbath rest"
And I can "rest" in this sabbath/Jesus even though I am not yet in this promised land
Each person on this planet that we call erath is a unique individual
Don;t be frightened of loosing your identity in Jesus ,
after all THIS will bring out your true identity and not a false image
Psalm 107, Study 4, Loosing Your Identity,