There is an illness that many of us have acquired and it is currently plaguing the church; It is called the self-identification crisis syndrome.
Since the fall of our first parents, man has struggled to understand the purposes of his creation and I dare say that it is because of this struggle why a number of things happen. It’s one of the reasons why young women get pregnant out of wedlock or fall victims to teenage pregnancy, why young men loose their interest for holy things and find short-lived joy in the dance-halls. It’s one of the reasons why older church folks criticize young people, forgetting that they too were once and still perhaps are infected by this fatal miasma. It’s one of the reasons why abuse, both in marriages and in various relations in the church is perpetuated. It’s the culprit behind the deafening silence that stifles the light and truth because of what happens behind closed doors or within locked cars.
Satan has taken a fundamental truth taught by the bible and twisted it so much that it becomes repulsive to most well thinking Christians. The quote, “know thyself” usually attributed to socrates, and so powerful in its exegetical concepts, has its roots in the Bible. Self knowledge, is neither esoteric nor occultic, it is a branch of a higher concept: self control, which is one of the principal marks of true righteousness. That true righteousness, is not original but borrowed. Borrowed, rather, sacrificially imparted and imputed through the life, death, resurrection and intercession of Jesus Christ.
When Adam came from the Creator’s hands, he was perfect, he lacked nothing. He had an accurate knowledge of God and an accurate knowledge of himself, though the two will never be equal for who can search out the depths of the wisdom and excellence of the Ancient of days? He was taught what his purpose was, how he was to glorify God, and how he was to manage the Dominion given him. When Adam sinned, he lost true sight of who God is, what his will concerning him was, he lost dominion of the earth and he lost an accurate knowledge of who he was in God.
See, outside of Christ we may accomplish much; we may become successful according the standards of the world. Yet, outside of Christ, we cannot have a true conception of who we are because our worth and value is in him, through him and because of him; for without him was not anything made that was made. Outside of Christ, we will never understand our true purpose, the great object of our lives. We can never bloom as much or grow as much, achieve as much as we ought because only the Master architect can truly understand the deep language of the blue print.
But here is the point that I want to get to: God’s love for us is unconditional. He does not love us because we are the best or the brightest. His love for us is not diminished because of our social status or financial background. He loves us because we are His, His by creation and His by redemption, He loves us in-spite of ourselves and there is nothing that we can do to quench His love for us.
The question is though, how much do we love others and how much do we love ourselves?
Self love is highly overrated these days but the kind of self love being propagated by social media is not the one that is borne of self control and self knowledge; it is one that denies God the first and best place in the throne room of our hearts.
It is only when we understand that because of God’s unconditional love for us that we are deeply valuable, that no one can rob us of his love or the knowledge take away the value that he places on us, that the knowledge of self will grow and blossom. When we know who we are in Christ, we cannot remain the same, cannot act the same, cannot treat others the same.
It is primarily because we have little knowledge of the Unconditional love of God for us, for others, that we allow ourselves to be treated certain ways and we treat others certain ways. It is because we search for true love in the wrong places why we many times end up getting hurt. It is because we forget the joy of salvation why we find pleasure in sinful lusts. It is because we do not understand the value that God places on each human being why we crucify them with our tongues.
We have to teach our young people that Jesus loves them, that they are of great worth, that its not OK to be in a dark corner alone with someone, that its not ok to put themselves down, that its not right to keep silent about abuse. We have to teach them the nature of unconditional love and we have to exemplify what it means to love unconditionally.
There is an antidote, a cure for the self-identification crisis syndrome. it can only be cured through experiencing the power of unconditional love.
“The content of the everlasting gospel, is the everlasting love of God.” Tabletalk- 3ABN