Remember, if people can name you they will define you. Many just go through life letting others tell them who they are: Pretty, smart, ugly, weak, ditzy, no class, etc. Then people embrace those descriptions and become what people have named them! Well, that is what the people at Antioch did. Prior to that, they were known by their individual names and not by any religious group. It was by the way the disciples and apostles lived and conducted themselves that defined who they were. On this earth, many people define themselves by their political status, their religion or their job. They wear their titles in those areas as a badge of honor as if the issue has been solved, when it actually has nothing to do with who they are! They are to be citizens in the Kingdom of God, but they must first be born again by His Spirit. It is through the Holy Spirit that we are defined! Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the Kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” John 3:5-6 NKJV
Keep in mind, those who are born again by the Spirit of God are Kingdom citizens. There are many who claim to love and know the King, but their lifestyle shows others a completely contrary side. Their lifestyle defines who they are. Actions speaks louder than words. This includes people who claim to be spiritual leaders! Ambassador Paul made that very clear when he wrote to the people in Philippi. Dear brothers and sisters, pattern your lives after mine, and learn from those who follow our example. For I have told you often before, and I say it again with tears in my eyes, that there are many whose conduct shows they are really enemies of the cross of Christ. They are headed for destruction. Their god is their appetite, they brag about shameful things, and they think only about this life here on earth. But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for Him to return as our Savior. He will take our weak mortal bodies and change them into glorious bodies like His own, using the same power with which He will bring everything under His control. Philippians 3:17-21
It isn't those who don't know King Jesus who are the enemies of the cross of Christ. It is those who claim to know Him and claim to serve Him who are the enemies of the Kingdom. Their god is their carnal appetites and they love to be entertained. Entertainment isn't just worldly. There is a great deal of entertainment in churches also. It feeds their emotions. In this case, that is what defines them...the carnal emotion that is being fed.
True citizens of the Kingdom have no regard for their life, because they trust in the King and His Word. They realize when we leave this mortal body, we will be in His presence. Ambassador Paul made this very clear. Remember that the Governor--Holy Spirit--is our guarantee. For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long to put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee He has given us His Holy Spirit. 2 Corinthians 5:1-5
In essence, we are defined by our principles, standards and the Holy Spirit that lives within us.
Remember, your greatest asset is your faith in the Word of the living God.
All scriptures NLT unless noted.
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