Summary: The Bible talks about us as being servants of God. But it also says we are Sons of the living God. How can we be both? And what does that mean to us as live our Christian life?
OPEN: James Dobson tells of the time he was away on a business trip. While he was away, and his wife and 2 children were sitting down to eat, his wife turned to their two year old son Ryan and asked if he would like to pray before he and sister ate.
The invitation startled the little boy, but he folded his little hands, bowed his head and said reverently,
“I love you Daddy, Amen.”
(James Dobson, Focus On The Family Magazine April 07 p. 18)
APPLY: Now, who was little Ryan praying to?
(His earthly daddy)
Because, in his child-like mind – his earthly father WAS God. His earthly father was most powerful being he knew.
Granted, it was bad theology.
But in his childlike mistake Ryan hit upon a truth.
You see, when you I become Christians God - the most powerful being we could possibly know – God became our Father.
Paul writes in Galatians 4:4-7
“…When the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the FULL RIGHTS OF SONS.
BECAUSE YOU ARE SONS, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, <"Abba>, Father." So you are no longer a slave, BUT A SON; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.
This is a repeated theme throughout the New Testament.
Romans 8:14-16 for example says “The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that WE ARE GOD’S CHILDREN. Now if we are children, then we are heirs— heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.”
John wrote: How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called CHILDREN OF GOD! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 1 John 3:1
And earlier in Galatians, Paul had written: “YOU ARE ALL SONS OF GOD through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.” Galatians 3:26-27
Now, this is a unique relationship that God has given us.
We are all sons of God through faith in Jesus Christ.
Until Jesus came… that hadn’t happened before.
The people of the OLD Testament had a special relationship with God, but they were never called “the Children of God.”
They were known as the PEOPLE of God.
They were known as the CHILDREN of Israel.
But they were NOT called the “children of God.”
But, at one point in the Old Testament, God declared that this was going to change. He said He was going to establish a NEW relationship with His people. He was going to create a new contract with them – a New Covenant.
The Apostle Peter quoted an OT prophecy when he told the Gentile Christians: “Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.” 1 Peter 2:10
Now, what prophecy was Peter referring to?
It was from Hosea 1:9-10.
And in that passage God declared:
“In the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’” Hosea 1:10b
God declared we’d be called “sons of the living God” - a phrase never before used in Scripture. Long before Jesus was born… and lived… and died… and rose again God had decided that when we became Christians, we would be called “the sons of the living God.”
We were allowed that privilege because God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.
So, because of Jesus, we now have full rights as sons.
We have been adopted by God.
What exactly does that mean?
Well 1st it means– we’re not under the Law.
Galatians 4:4-5 says “But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.”
We’ve been redeemed from UNDER the Law.
Those UNDER the Mosaic law lived UNDER the strict rules and penalties of that Law.
ILLUS: Imagine driving down the road going 3 miles over the speed limit. How many of you have ever done that?
(Some of you aren’t telling the truth).
You see red and blue lights in your rearview mirror and you pull over. A policeman steps up to your window and gives you a ticket.
Did he have a right to give you that ticket?