Sun, Sep 03, 2017

Changing Your Identity

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2 Kings 23:31-37  “CHANGING YOUR IDENTITY”

Good King Josiah has died at the hands of the Egyptians.

 

31 Jehoahaz was twenty-three years old when he became king, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem.

His mother’s name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah.

32 And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, according to all that his fathers had done.

·      Josiah was 16 when Jehoahaz was born

o  Jehoahaz (je-ho’-a-haz) = Whom Jehovah holds fast; Jehovah upholds; Jehovah has laid hold; the LORD that sees; (root = to take hold of).   [1]

§  Cogan and Tadmor (II Kings, 303) note that Jehoahaz is probably his throne name. Shallum is his given name (cf. Jer 22:10–12; 1 Chr 3:15).   [2]

·      Shallum (shal’-lum) = Retribution; recompense; spoilation; rewarder. Requital; restitution.   [3]

 

·      90 day wonder – couldn’t have done too much in removing Josiah’s reforms.

o  He got Egypt’s attention fairly quickly.

o  He must have rebelled from Egypt’s control – refused to be their puppet King.

§  Necho through him into Egyptian prison where he died.

 

33 Now Pharaoh Necho put him in prison at Riblah in the land of Hamath, that he might not reign in Jerusalem; and he imposed on the land a tribute of one hundred talents of silver and a talent of gold.

34 Then Pharaoh Necho made Eliakim the son of Josiah king in place of his father Josiah, and changed his name to Jehoiakim.

And Pharaoh took Jehoahaz and went to Egypt, and he died there.

·      Eliakim (el-li’-a-kim) = Whom God sets up; i.e., establishes and causes to stand; God will raise up; God does establish.   [4]

·      Jehoiakim (je-hoy’-a-kim) = The LORD will set up; Jehovah has set up; the LORD will rise up.    [5]

o  Necho found a willing puppet in Eliakim.

§  Such a puppet that Necho even changed his name.

§  Why such a subtle change of name?

o  The Devil, the flesh and the World want to make you their puppet!

§  Destroy your identity in Jesus!

§  Ruin your credibility as a Christian.

§  Talk you into a corner – defeated, distracted, destroyed

 

·     What is it that identifies you?

o  Who do others say you are?

§  This is the most common means by which people describe themselves – what others say about you.

o  Who do your closest friends say you are?

§  So, how about your closest friends – how would they identify you?

§  Critical Media Project:  “Identity is a socially and historically constructed concept. We learn about our own identity and the identity of others through interactions with family, peers, organizations, institutions, media and other connections we make in our everyday life.”   [6]

 

·      Is your identity tied to:

o  Physical – identity defined by how you look, your muscles, your tan, etc.

o  mental – your identity defined by your mental state or “isms”

o  emotional – your identity defined by your constant emotional state

o  spiritual – your identity tied solely to your church, your church friends, etc.

o  social sources – an identity tied solely to your presence on social media

 

What is the Christian’s identity?

Ephesians 2:4–7   (NIV)

4 But because of his great love for us,

God, who is rich in mercy,

5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.

6 And God raised us up with Christ

and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus,

7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.

 

God’s great LOVE for us is our most identifying mark.

·      You are God’s “greatly beloved.”

(Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Morning & Evening)    Child of God, do you hesitate to appropriate this title?  Ah! has your unbelief made you forget that you are greatly beloved too?  Must you not have been greatly beloved, to have been bought with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot?  When God smote his only begotten Son for you, what was this but being greatly beloved? You lived in sin, and rioted in it, must you not have been greatly beloved for God to have borne so patiently with you?  You were called by grace and led to a Savior, and made a child of God and an heir of heaven.  All this proves, does it not, a very great and super-abounding love?  Since that time, whether your path has been rough with troubles, or smooth with mercies, it has been full of proofs that you are a man greatly beloved.  If the Lord has chastened you, yet not in anger; if he has made you poor, yet in grace you have been rich.  The more unworthy you feel yourself to be, the more evidence have you that nothing but unspeakable love could have led the Lord Jesus to save such a soul as yours.  The more demerit you feel, the clearer is the display of the abounding love of God in having chosen you, and called you, and made you an heir of bliss.  Now, if there be such love between God and us let us live in the influence and sweetness of it, and use the privilege of our position.  Do not let us approach our Lord as though we were strangers, or as though he were unwilling to hear us—for we are greatly beloved by our loving Father.  “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?”  Come boldly, O believer, for despite the whisperings of Satan and the doubtings of thine own heart, thou art greatly beloved.    [7]

 

Regina Forest, Thirsty Heart, Nourishment for the Dehydrated Soul,

Solution –

1.  Recognize – the lie, repent for believing it, seek the truth of God’s Word.

2.  Exchange – the lie for the truth Jesus says about you.

3.  Believe – the Scriptures and God’s promises.  Choose to believe Jesus’ promises.   [8]

 

Paul’s writings – 87 times in 85 verses:

·      “in Christ”

o  14X in Romans:

Romans 3:24    and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

Romans 6:11   In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Romans 6:23   For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

Truths:

I’m justified by grace!

I’m alive to God through Christ Jesus!

I have eternal life in Jesus!

 

o  20X in Paul’s letters to the Corinthians:

1 Corinthians 1:30   It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.

1 Corinthians 4:10   We are fools for Christ, but you are so wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are honored, we are dishonored!

1 Corinthians 15:22   For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

2 Corinthians 5:17   Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!

 

Truths:

I am righteous, holy and redeemed by Jesus!

I am wise, strong and honored in Christ Jesus!

I am a new person in Jesus, the old is gone!

 

o  10X in Galatians:

Galatians 2:16   know that a person is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified.

 

o  17X in the 1st chapter of Ephesians alone!

§  Why so many times in the first chapter to Ephesus?

·      Paul probably noticed their loss of identity in Christ.

Revelation 2:4   Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.

 

Ephesians 1:3   Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.

Ephesians 1:9   he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ,

Ephesians 1:11    In Christ we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,

 

Truths:

I am blessed by EVERY spiritual blessing!

I have a Godly purpose in Christ Jesus!

Jesus will work everything out!

 

o  8X in Philippians

Philippians 3:14    I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

 

Truths:

I have a wonderful goal in life!

 

Regina Forest, Thirsty Heart, Nourishment for the Dehydrated Soul,

Solution –

1.  Recognize – the lie, repent for believing it, seek the truth of God’s Word.

2.  Exchange – the lie for the truth Jesus says about you.

3.  Believe – the Scriptures and God’s promises.  Choose to believe Jesus’ promises.   [9]

 

35 So Jehoiakim gave the silver and gold to Pharaoh;

but he taxed the land to give money according to the command of Pharaoh;

he exacted the silver and gold from the people of the land, from every one according to his assessment, to give it to Pharaoh Necho.

36 Jehoiakim was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Zebudah the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah.

37 And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, according to all that his fathers had done.

 

·      Jehoiakim rules from about 609 b.c. to 598 b.c.

o  Nothing about him impresses the author.

·      Jeremiah offers an even more scathing appraisal.

o  He denounces the king as one who oppresses, extorts, and sheds innocent blood to get the money to build himself a new palace during tough economic times in Judah (Jer 22:13–17).

o  Further, Jehoiakim kills or threatens truthful prophets (cf. Jer 26:1–24) and shows no regard for the prophetic word.

§  Indeed, he burns a scroll of such words (Jer 36:20–26).

o  Clearly, Josiah’s reform is dead. Therefore Jeremiah declares that Jehoiakim “will have the burial of a donkey—dragged away and thrown outside the gates of Jerusalem.” A more fitting end could hardly be imagined for so self-serving a king. Who would possibly mourn his passing?   [10]

 



[1] Stelman Smith and Judson Cornwall, The Exhaustive Dictionary of Bible Names (North Brunswick, NJ: Bridge-Logos, 1998), 125.

[2] Paul R. House, 1, 2 Kings, vol. 8, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1995).

[3] Stelman Smith and Judson Cornwall, The Exhaustive Dictionary of Bible Names (North Brunswick, NJ: Bridge-Logos, 1998), 213.

[4] Stelman Smith and Judson Cornwall, The Exhaustive Dictionary of Bible Names (North Brunswick, NJ: Bridge-Logos, 1998), 64.

[5] Stelman Smith and Judson Cornwall, The Exhaustive Dictionary of Bible Names (North Brunswick, NJ: Bridge-Logos, 1998), 125.

[6] http://www.criticalmediaproject.org/about/key-concepts/

[7]Spurgeon, Charles H., Morning and Evening, (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.) 1995.

[8] Regina Forest, Thirsty Heart, Nourishment for the Dehydrated Soul, (Regina Forest, ©2016), pages 31-48.

[9] Regina Forest, Thirsty Heart, Nourishment for the Dehydrated Soul, (Regina Forest, ©2016), pages 31-48.

[10] Paul R. House, 1, 2 Kings, vol. 8, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1995), 393.