A Case Of Mistaken Identity

Have you ever thought you knew someone, but later found out your assumptions and preconceived notions about their true identity were completely wrong?

Plot lines involving aliases and undercover agents might make for interesting entertainment, but in the reality of spiritual life, we need to be sure who it is we’re worshipping.

In Mark 6, we find a case of “mistaken identity” about Jesus, something that on the surface may seem trivial, but in the end, if not corrected, can cost us eternity.

Mark 6:1-3 – Jesus went out from there and came into His hometown; and His disciples followed Him. When the Sabbath came, He began to teach in the synagogue; and the many listeners were astonished, saying, “Where did this man get these things, and what is this wisdom given to Him, and such miracles as these performed by His hands? Is this not the carpenter, the son of Mary, and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? Are not His sisters here with us?” And they took offense at Him.

Jesus grew up as a human boy. His entrance into manhood was played out in public, in the small community of Nazareth. We know that Jesus exhibited an unusually high intelligence and understanding of spiritual matters at a young age, as scripture tells us His parents found Him discussing theology with the priests and scribes in Jerusalem. But this is the only peek we get into His childhood. As far as we know, He was an ordinary boy who played ball in the streets with His friends, laughed with His half-siblings around the dinner table, and learned the craft of carpentry from his father, Joseph.

Unfortunately, the people in His hometown couldn’t see past His humanity to believe in His deity, even though they were eyewitnesses to the miracles He was performing and openly acknowledged the authoritative wisdom in the words He spoke.

The people in Nazareth made a fatal mistake by not seeing Jesus for who He really is.

Sadly, this still happens today. Jesus is misidentified by all religions who reject that He is the Son of God, the only way of salvation. Any philosophical or spiritual thought that diminishes His deity or places Him on a level with other prophets or teachers is a lie. To see Jesus for less than who He is, is to miss the message of the gospel entirely.

It’s dangerous to believe something untrue about God. It’s also scary to believe something untrue about satan.

Two days ago, millions of people consumed a big dose of the cultural garbage known as the Grammys, where popular music groups perform for each other and award each other accolades and little statues. Perhaps you’ve seen the articles and video clips; maybe you watched it live, but the nation watched as two artists performed a set called “Unholy” in a tribute to satan.

I won’t go into detail and I’m not posting links because I don’t want them on my blog. You can look it up. My point is, there are millions of people today who are making a fatal mistake in misidentifying satan.

Satan is not some imaginary figure dressed up in a red suit and horns. He’s a fallen angel, a powerful, evil spirit being that prowls our world seeking to destroy, kill, and devour the lives of God’s beloved creation – you and me.

John 8:44 – You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

Ephesians 6:11-12 – Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.

1 Peter 5:8 – Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.

This is not the first time the world has glorified the devil while flaunting their ungodliness with an “in your face” affront to God and all that is good and holy. It’s not surprising. The entertainment industry is satan’s playground and he rewards those who worship him with money and possessions and the fame they crave. No one rises to popularity in that world without surrendering their soul.

What is terrifying is that our culture so openly glorifies debauchery and evil, literally worshipping satan publicly, and eschews anything to do with God as He has revealed Himself in scripture.

Don’t be fooled or confused about who has your best interests at heart. Satan presents himself as the angel of light, offering you freedom and power, but he is a liar and a deceiver. He hides his real identity by posing as a cartoon character but will soon expose himself as the father of evil to those who follow him down the path to utter destruction. And more and more, he’s not even hiding; his followers are openly and freely promoting all that is an abomination to God and are accepted and celebrated by our culture for it.

Jesus alone will tell you the truth. He never hid who He claimed to be, but openly declared Himself as the Son of God, the promised Messiah who came to be the Savior of the world.

Those who believed saw miracles. They received forgiveness for their sins and were given eternal life in Jesus. Those who couldn’t see past His humanity, who drew their own conclusions instead of trusting His Word, died in their sin of unbelief.

Mark 6:5-6 – And He could do no miracle there except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. And He wondered at their unbelief.

Who do you believe Jesus is?

Who do you believe the devil is?

Does it matter? Oh yes, my friend, it matters. Make sure your understanding of Jesus isn’t a case of mistaken identity. When you find out the truth, it may be too late.

2 thoughts on “A Case Of Mistaken Identity

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