Summary: What blessings does God give us when He makes us "children of the King," and why would anyone want to try steal those blessings away from us?
After the death of Elvis Presley it was fairly common to read headlines in Tabloids: “I was Elvis’ Love Child” or “Elvis’ Ghost is My Father”. Many people claimed to be related to “The King” either for the prestige or for the possibly of getting a share of his inheritance. A radio station in Detroit, MI even offered the opportunity that for folks to do just that. If you sent in 2 dollars and a self-addressed, stamped envelope, they would send you an authentic birth certificate claiming Elvis as your father. For that price, you too could become a child of Elvis. A child of the King. The certificate claimed to entitle the bearer to “appear on any talk show in the country” and apparently 2000 of Elvis’s “children” bought in and got the birth certificate. Of course, the birth certificate was bogus, and everybody knew it! But they didn’t expect to be real. It only cost $2. (Con Wolfe)
But our text today tells us that God has offered us a REAL birth certificate. Galatians 4:3-7 tells us we “were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world. But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, "Abba! Father!" So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.”
If you’re a Christian, you’ve been bought with a price. Jesus died for you, so that you could be adopted and become a child of the King.
My son is adopted. We got the opportunity to make him our child even before he was born, so when he was born he got a REAL birth certificate with his name on it.
Now before he was born, our lawyer (being a lawyer) noted that our son’s biological parents were short people, and that was always the possibility that he might not only be short, but perhaps have some physical or mental abnormality. If that happened (he asked) would we still want him? (Pause) Well, yeah!! We wanted him just as he was.
Now, the first thing I want you to notice about what Galatians is telling us is this: God wanted you! And He wanted you just as you are. And God was willing to adopt you even with all the deformities and scars that sin had made in your life. In Ephesians 2:3 Paul told the Ephesians they “once lived in the passions of (their) flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.” They (and you and I) “were objects of wrath,” but Ephesians 1:5 says that “In love (God) predestined us for ADOPTION as sons through Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 1:4,5)
One person put it this way: “God loves us just the way we are, but he loves us too much to leave us that way” (Adrian Rogers)
But now notice, Galatians 4 tells us we are NO LONGER slaves but heirs through God. The best that radio station in Detroit could offer for their adoption papers was the right to appear on any talk show in the country. But by contrast – we are heirs of God. In I Peter 13-5 we read “In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade— kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power”
Like I said, my son is adopted, and if there’s any money left over after I die, he gets his share. And as much as I’m able, while I’m alive, I will shield him from danger and pain. But I’m just – mortal. I’m mere flesh and blood. I don’t have nearly as great an inheritance to give him as God has given us. And I can’t nearly protect him as much as God can protect us. I’m a child of the King. I have value; I have purpose; and I have a place in heaven. I have all of that - and MORE - because of Jesus.
Now that said, you and I have got to understand that there are people out there who would take advantage of us and rob us of what God has given us. There are people out there who will try to sell you on THEIR BRAND of Christianity - THEIR VERSION of what being a Christian is all about. Paul wrote: “They make much of you, but for no good purpose. They want to shut you out, that you may make much of them.” Galatians 4:17