The Independence Wall Blocks Sonship Identity
This week I have heard of not one but two more Christian couples, who have been in church many years, yet getting divorced. In working in prayer ministry I commonly come across people frustrated at not being able to grow and overcome. So often believers have understood aspects of healing without seeing the bigger picture, the actual path to emotional and spiritual maturity. So often we break the tops off of weeds without getting at the roots. A deeper look at the gospel releases to us the key.
When a person gets saved, what are they getting saved from? To answer this question let’s consider what Adam lost. Adam walked in the vulnerability of holding his heart open to intimacy with God, knowing that he was loved and cared for simply because he was a child of God. This is a big deal, countless Christians are secretly angry at God because they feel He didn’t protect them or didn’t come through for them when they really needed Him. If you dig down deep enough there is always a shame lie at the root, “I’m flawed” or “I’m abandoned.”
Root of All Sin
The serpent deceived Adam into thinking God was not fully for him, “You will not certainly die… “God knows that when you eat it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”, i.e., “God’s holding out on you, there must be something wrong with you that He doesn’t trust you to give these things.” Adam did what we all do when we are hurt and angry, believing lies of shame. Adam partook of the fruit to know good and evil for himself, to put up walls of protection, to live in independence and be in control of his own life. This is the root of all sin and relational breakdown. Adam did it first and we have all followed ever since. I believe this was the beginning of the old man.
Choosing to live for self is choosing to live for an image. Adam, instead of having his identity in simply being a child of God, now had his own image to uphold. “I will decide good and evil, what is appropriate for myself.” He now had the image of his declared independence to promote, protect, and provide for. All striving is here, all performance, all fear, because, what if he can’t get himself taken care of? Most sin is a revolt of this striving not working out. “No one is there for me so I’ll get high and take care of myself.”
The challenge is that many Christians and churches are not aware of this. Yet this is our lifelong journey, our path to health and maturity. It is our willingness to become aware of our identity issues driving our sin and relational breakdown, holding our hearts open before God to work through them.