The most transformative revelation I ever received into my life was an understanding of who I am in Christ. After years of struggling to walk in victory, I discovered at the age of seventeen what Paul was talking about when he said that he had been crucified with Christ and no longer lived except by faith in Him (Galatians 2:20).
Since that time, the Lord has gradually unfolded this concept further, revealing that I have also been raised with Christ and seated with Him at the right hand of the Father (Ephesians 2:6). When people truly understand the Gospel, we discover that we are brought into union with God (1 Corinthians 6:17) so that we can participate in His nature (2 Peter 1:3-4).
I have preached a variety of messages about identity in Christ, and the Lord is regularly revealing new ones to me. Some discuss what it means to be the Temple of the Holy Spirit, others the Body of Christ, and still others what it means to bear the image and likeness of God. But the primary theme is union with Jesus in His death, resurrection, and ascension–a complete transformation by which God rescues us out of darkness and adopts us as His own.
Identity teachings have a strong Gospel emphasis and often result in long-time “church attenders” (1) realizing that they’ve been dead in their sin, (2) publicly repenting, and (3) surrendering their lives to Jesus in a transformative way.
You can watch an example of an identity sermon here: