Support us on Paypal
Contact Us
Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Rabbi K.A. Schneider » Rabbi Schneider - Step Into Your Identity

Rabbi Schneider - Step Into Your Identity

Rabbi Schneider - Step Into Your Identity
Rabbi Schneider - Step Into Your Identity
TOPICS: Deep Revelation From the Book of Ephesians Season 1, Identity

So we're gonna go now to the book of Romans 8, where Paul uses this very similar language saying the same thing. So I'm gonna go now to Romans 8 picking up in verse 28 Romans 8. Paul writes, "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God," now get this, "to those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, for those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son..." So let's think about this again. "Those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son".

So what a lot of God's people have done is they said, Yeah, we were predestined, but we were predestined because God foreknew, they think, that we would choose Jesus. And because God knows everything and He knows that we were going to choose Him, He predestined us before the foundation of the world because His foreknowledge knew that we would choose Him. So they make God's choosing us dependent on us first choosing Him. So many Christians understand predestination to be the result of God's foreknowledge, they say, that God saw in advance that we would choose Him. But Jesus said, "You did not choose Me, I chose you". Let me say it again. Yeshua said point blank, "You did not choose Me, I chose you".

So we're going to look at this word a little bit deeper, this word foreknowledge, and find out what it means. Does it really mean that God predestined us because He foreknew that we were going to choose Him? You're going to find out that is absolutely not what it means. We're getting here because we're looking from the book of Ephesians as to what our identity is and how we come up with our identity. And when we understand that God chose us and predestined us, we'll know who we are, we'll know whose we are, and we'll know where we get our identity from, and what our calling is in this world.

So let's go back to Romans 8 for a moment, verse 29. "For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, so that He, Jesus, would be the firstborn among many brethren". Picking up in verse 30, "And these whom He predestined..." There's that word again. "And those whom He predestined" get it now, "He also called..." So who does God call to Himself? He calls those that He's predestined. There's two types of calling in Scripture. On the one hand, there's a general call. The general call goes out to the entire world. We preach the gospel to all creation. We preach the gospel to the ends of the earth. That's the general call. The call goes out tall.

Jesus said, "All that are weary and heavy laden, come to Me and I will give you rest". And anybody that comes, He will say, that's the general call. But then there's a specific, beloved ones, effectual call where God sends His Holy Spirit in His word personally into somebody's life so that person is irresistibly drawn to the truth. "For those whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified". So there's a specific call. This is why Jesus when He was preaching in John 6, he said, "But you believe not..." In John 10, He said, "You believe not because you're not My sheep". He said, "My sheep will hear My voice. My Father has given them to Me".

In John 6, Jesus said, "Unless you eat My flesh and drink My blood, you have no life in yourself". But the people that were listening couldn't hear it. And Jesus' response to that was this: "Don't grumble among yourselves," in John 6. "No one can come to Me unless it's been granted from the Father. All the Father gives Me shall come to me," Jesus said. "And He that comes to me alone I will in no wise cast out". Jesus knew what was going on. He knew that those that came to Him came to Him because the Father had chose them. Look at John 6 and study that. John 17, the high priestly prayer, Jesus said, "I pray not for the world, but for those whom thou hast given Me". We're talking about being chosen and predestined.

Now, some people, again, they see that word "those who He foreknew", that we just looked at in Romans 8, and then they say, Yeah, but God only chose you and predestined you because He knew that you would choose Him. But if we continue in Paul's writing, we're gonna see that's exactly the opposite of what He's teaching here. So Paul continues here, once again, in verse 30, "Those whom He predestined, He also called; and those whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. What shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us"?

Now let's continue. And we're gonna get a lot more insight as we move into Romans 9. And remember in the beginning, there were no chapter divisions here. It was one manuscript. But I'm just, in the interest of people's time and because I'm primarily concentrating on the book of Ephesians today, I don't want to go through the whole book of Romans. You can get my series on the book of Romans and I cover every line in detail. But I'm gonna pickup now in Romans 9:9 here. "For this is the word of promise: 'At this time I will come, and Sarah shall have a son.' And not only this, but there was Rebekah..."

Okay, Isaac's wife, Rebekah. "And not only this, but there was Rebekah also, when she had conceived twins by one man, our father, Isaac; For though the twins were not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, so that God's purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works," beloved one, "but because of Him who calls, it was said to her, 'The elder will serve the younger.' Just as it is written, 'Jacob I loved but Esau I hated.'"

So Paul has been very specific here. That before the twins were born, there was no good works, there was no bad works, that God made a decision about who His favor was going to be on. It was based totally in His own will. It was independent of anything good He saw in either Jacob or Esau. It wasn't based on what they would do in the future it was totally independent. Paul said it was based on God, that His choice would stand not because of words that were said to her. Before they were born, the elder will serve the younger as it is written, Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.

Now, this does not seem right with some of us. Some of us are like, what's going on here? Are you saying that God's favor is not in everybody the same way? That doesn't seem fair. Paul knows we're going to feel like this. That's how you can trust that the interpretation that I'm giving you is the right interpretation, it's the truth. Because the reaction that people have to what I'm saying is exactly the reaction that Paul anticipates that people will have when they hear what I'm saying right now. So Paul says, "What shall we say then"? Verse 14. "What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be"!

In other words, Paul knows that when he brings out this revelation that God chose one and not the other, that He did it before they were born, that had nothing to do with what they did or didn't do, either Jacob or Esau, but God just did it because He decided to do it. Paul said that our interpretation of that, "Well, that doesn't seem fair. That doesn't seem right". This is why Paul says, "What should we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be"! Paul continues. "For he says to Moshe, to Moses, 'I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion". In other words, God's prerogative, He can do whatever He wants to do.

Paul continues, "So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who Has mercy. For the scripture says to Pharaoh, 'For this very purpose, I raised you up to demonstrate My power on you, and that My name might proclaim throughout the whole earth". Paul continues. "So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires". Did you get this? Paul was giving the example of raising Pharaoh up just so that God could destroy him and the Egyptians by His miracles. Because God wanted to be glorified. God needed an adversary to glorify Himself. Look what Paul says next, "You will say to me then, 'Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will"?

See, this doesn't seem fair to us. We're saying, well, how can God find fault then with Pharaoh? But understand that God was not hardening an innocent man's heart? Pharaoh's heart was already hard and all of humanity's rebellion against God. Ephesians 2 tells us, you and I, that God said that you and I were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God being rich in mercy because of His great love, He saved us. There was nothing there... When God destroyed Pharaoh to glorify Himself, God wasn't destroying an innocent man. He was destroying a man who was already polluted.

And the same thing is true of all humanity. God isn't under obligation to save anybody because we've all rebelled against Him. We're all by nature, Ephesians 2 tells us, children of wrath indulging in the lust of the mind and other flesh. We're independent beings that want to live autonomously living in the natural world for ourselves. We're by nature children of wrath. But God, Paul said, because of the great love with which He loved us, made us alive together with Christ. So I want you to understand that God can do what He wants. He's not obligated to save anybody, the whole world rebelled against Him. So Paul continues here once again, after he talks about how God raised a Pharaoh to glorify himself.

Notice what Paul... let's look at it again here. "So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires. You will say to me, 'Why does He still find fault?'" I mean, if God exalts one and just to wipe them out, like in the case of Pharaoh? How can God find fault with them? Paul says we'll ask the question: "Who resists God's will? Why is it Pharaoh's fault"?

Notice the response that Paul gives. This should set us in our place, beloved. Either we're going to let the word of God define truth or we're going to exalt our own mind to define truth. But notice Paul's defense of the Lord is very clear. Paul says, "On the contrary, who are you, O man, that answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, 'Why did you make me like this,' will it? Or does not the potter have the right over the clay to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use? What if God, willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction"?

In other words, God has not destroyed sinners from the earth yet because He's waiting to save those vessels of mercy that He chose before the foundation of the world. And not until they're all saved will His final judgment come? So Paul wraps it up. "And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which he prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles".

So we're gonna get back and continue in the book of Ephesians on the next episode. We'll get right to it. But beloved, we want to know who we are, right? As human beings, we're looking for identity. Paul told us who we are. We were chosen by the Father. Out of people that have inhabited the planet from all time, you were chosen specifically and specially chosen. And not because there was something different about you, not because you're a better person, not because the Lord, beloved one, saw that you would choose Him. No. He chose you in your mother's womb.

You are, by nature, a child of wrath even as the rest. But God being rich in mercy, because of the great love, my friend, with which He loves you, He chose you and then He revealed Himself to you and brought you to Himself, and is now in the process of sanctifying you and washing you. You're born again. His life is now in you. He's giving you the same love for Him that Jesus has for Him. He's changing your nature. We're going from glory to glory. We're new creations. That's who we are.

So when you wake up in the morning, begin your day reading the Word of God, because that's why you're on the planet, to be separate unto Him. The Bible says we are chosen in love to be holy before Him. To be holy means to be set apart and unique. You're going to take a few hits in the world for being a witness for Jesus, for being separated unto Him. But isn't that awesome? We get to suffer with Him. And those that suffer with Him, beloved ones, will reign with Him. To the degree that you suffer with Him, you will also reign with Him. God loves you, beloved. Take that to heart and step into your identity and your calling in Him.
Are you Human?:*