It used to be that people did not go by surnames, but instead by some sort of identifying name. This name could have been bestowed upon them based on geography or occupation or heritage… but often times it was earned by their character.
In Narnia, the Sons of Adam and the Daughters of Eve were given new titles when they became the Kings and Queens of Narnia. Peter the Magnificent, Susan the Gentle, Lucy the Valiant and Edmund the Just. Aslan was renaming them according to the character he saw in them.
Jesus did this same thing when He renamed Peter. He was once called “Simon son of John” but now would be called Cephas (or Peter or Petra) which He later clarifies to mean rock. However, this change from Simon to Peter was not the only title change that Peter took on. After the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, he realized his calling and renamed himself to “Peter an apostle of Christ.” (1 Peter 1:1)
As followers of Christ, our name has been forever attached to Him and His Kingdom. I am McLean adopted son of God. There are numerous ways you can describe who you are in Christ but they all have the same thing, your identity is no longer in your geography, your heritage or your occupation. Your identity is permanently connect to the one and only Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
To see Peter continue this theme in 1 Peter 1, we not only see him identify himself as one who is in Christ, but he also elaborates on the identity of those he is addressing in his letter.
“To those who are elect exiles of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood.” (1 Peter 1:1b-2)
The addressees of this letter were being identified as the “elect”, being “in the sanctification of the Spirit”, obedient “to Jesus Christ” and covered “with His blood.” While the title of “exiles of the Dispersion” only applied to those living through that period and in that region… every other title mentioned applied to every believer in Christ Jesus.
So who are you? How do you identify yourself? As the song goes, you should now wear a name badge that says, “Hello my name is Child of the one true King!”