This week Pastor Mark preached the sermon “Jesus Gives a Better Identity” out of Esther 5:1–14 for part 5 in our sermon series on the book of Esther. Here are some social media highlights from this week’s sermon. Share the sermon with this shortened link: http://jesus.to/QCBCPU
Your identity—who you think you are—determines how you live. Esther now sees herself as one of God’s people. Haman’s identity, though, is in his idolatry: his glory, power, honor, recognition, and success. If you’re one of God’s people, your identity isn’t achieved, it’s received. Your identity doesn’t need to be in your idolatry, like Haman’s, because Jesus gives a better identity.
The things that have happened to us might explain us, but they don't define us. #betteridentity
If your spouse and your friends only ever agree with you, they're not helping or loving you. #betteridentity
Bitter people do horrible things. #betteridentity
If our identity is in our idolatry, it leads to our misery. #betteridentity
Haman made a cross to hang a man upon, but Jesus came as a man to hang upon a cross for all men. #betteridentity
When we idolize our religion, we demonize all other people and we don't love them. We don't have to agree with them, but we do need to love them.
What's your idolatry? If you're not sure, follow your emotions. Where do you get happy? Sad? What or who are you afraid of losing?
The whole world lives for their identity, but only a Christian can live from their identity. For the non-Christian, identity is something achieved. For the Christian, it's something received. If our identity is in anything other than Christ, we end up in misery.
Haman is full of himself, always wants people to know who he's hanging out with, etc.—and so are we. Pastor Mark jokes about how he's done the exact same thing on social media especially.
What's your idolatry? If you're not sure, follow your emotions. Idols lie: they promise a heavenly, peaceful existence that they cannot deliver. Idolatry is usually a good thing a in a God-place, which is a bad thing. In 1 John 5:21, the Apostle John says to the church, "Keep yourselves from idols." That's the invitation of a loving pastor who wants the best for his people.
Community Group Questions
- What is your identity?
- Is your private identity the same as your public identity?
- What is your idolatry?
- Do you think Mordecai should have made up for lost bows as Haman left Queen Esther’s dinner?
- How do you work from your identity instead of for your identity?
- How has Jesus changed your identity?