Karen Rogers reminded me of an incident that occurred a while back. Bonnie Cottrell found a set of military identity (dog) tags and set out on a venture to return them to their original owner. With the help of friends and the internet, she was successful in this task and the rightful owner now has his dog tags back.
I well remember my first set of dog tags. They were issued to me upon entry to Air Force Basic Training in 1951. They were given to us as the first piece of military equipment we received. It contains our Last Name, First Name, (MI), Serial Number, Date of Birth, Blood Type, and Religious Preference. We were required to wear them at all times. I still have mine hanging right here above my computer. They contain, not only my identification, but many memories.
As I was pondering this, I couldn't help but think that as important as those dog tags were to us in the military, they are only memories after that time in our lives.
There is an identity that requires no dog tags, drivers license, no passport or other means of written proof of identity. That is our identity in Jesus Christ.
Eph. 1:11-13 (Msg) "It's in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone. It's in Christ that you, once you heard the truth and believed it (this Message of your salvation,) found yourselves home free--signed, sealed, and delivered by the Holy Spirit."
When we accepted Christ as our Savior, our lives changed and we took on our eternal identity. We became CHRISTIANS.
Christian selfhood is not defined in terms of who we are in and of ourselves. It's defined in terms of what God does to us and the relationship he creates with us and the destiny he appoints for us. God made us who we are so we could make known who he is. Our identity is for the sake of making known HIS identity.
Walk in a manner worthy of your calling (Eph 4:1)
Walk as children of light (Eph 5:8)
You are the light of the world, a city set on a hill (Matt 5:14)
I have chosen you (Rev 17:14)
You are a witness and a worker (Acts 1:8)
Through Jesus you are victorious (1 Cor 15:57)
You have a glorious future (Rom 8:18)
You are a citizen of Heaven (Phi 3:20)
You are an ambassador for my Son (2 Cor 5:20)