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Me, me, me

2008 August 7
tags: ,
by Tim V-B

While at Wycliffe college I became very interested in ideas of the “self” and what the gospel says to our identity.  The tower of Babel was an attempt by man to create a “name” for ourselves (Genesis 11:4); the LORD soon put a stop to that.  But, and this is sheer grace, a few verses later he comes to Abram and makes a promise: “I will make your name great…” (Genesis 12:2).

Whenever we try to create ourselves, forming our own identity, we find ourself enslaved to idols.  Jesus calls us to die to self and receive Himself.  Our true name is found in Jesus Christ.

Melanie Phillips has just written a very good review of Look at Me: Celebrating the Self in Modern Britain by Peter Whittle.  You will find it here.  It is about the excessive narcissism in our contemporary culture.  She writes:

[The] modern cult of fame derives from a culture in which the individual has become the centre of the universe: the sun around which everyone and everything else must revolve. With external authority now considered an affront to the self along with the religious doctrines that imposed it, morality and culture have been systematically privatised and relativised so that no one’s values or lifestyle can trump those of anyone else. Every individual is thus a hero to himself.

This is nothing new.  The description of sin in Psalm 2 applies to every culture and time:

“Why do the nations conspire
and the peoples plot in vain?

2 The kings of the earth take their stand
and the rulers gather together
against the LORD
and against his Anointed One.

3 “Let us break their chains,” they say,
“and throw off their fetters.”

God laughs at such foolishness.  In response, he enthrones Jesus christ, his Anointed Son, as King – and calls us to take refuge in him.

(For a good sermon on Psalm 2, head to Christ The Truth here.)

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