Summary: This is the 9th sermon in the series. John gives three character traits of being a Child of God.
TEXT: 1st John 3:1-10
TITLE: Children of God
SERIES: Letters from John
TOPIC: becoming a child of God
OCCASION: Burnside Christian Church, Feb 13, 2011
PROP.: The 9th message in this series; John is declaring that as God’s children
INTRODUCTION: Good morning!
Our text this morning is found in 1st John 3:1-10. Please open your Bible and prepare to follow along this morning.
Let’s read our text this morning:
1st John 3:1-10
1 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!
Let’s stop right there for a moment. Wow. An entire sermon could be preached on this single verse. The reason I want to stop at this point is because often times we talk about the difficulty of following Christ. And that is true. It’s difficult to follow Jesus. But let’s not overlook the fantastic blessing of following Jesus Christ.
And John reminds us of that blessing right here in verse 1. If you are following Jesus Christ…you are called a child of God!
What a blessing! What does that mean?
1. It means that God takes ownership of you!
You belong to God! You are His!
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
It’s as if God has told Satan - “Hands off! That one belongs to me!” That’s a great blessing!
2. It means that God is going to take care of you!
His blessings - As a child of God, you now are entitled to everything that the father has.
His discipline - parents, you discipline your kids so that they become people who aren’t annoying. You want them to be the very best that they can be in this life. And God disciplines you to make you the best you that you can be!
3. It means you get God’s grace!
The rest of the world gets God’s law. “This is how you’ve failed.”
LAVISH! ABUNDANT! This describes the blessings of being called a child of God.
1 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.
So now that we have it cleared up and there is NO doubt that those who have decided to follow Jesus are indeed Children of God,
T.S.: So in the remainder of our time this morning, I want to examine some character traits of God’s children! Because it should be evident that you are a child of God.
I. God’s children look more like their dad all the time (vs. 2)
Have you ever noticed that the older you get, the more you like your parents?
I mean fellas, your eyebrows are so bushy, that they are starting to look like caterpillars. And you have more hair in your ears than you thought humanly possible. (I think I know what this guy needs for Christmas this year…)
And not only are you starting to look like your parents…you are starting to ACT like your parents! You are starting to use phrases that you heard your dad use. “I’ll give you something to cry about.” “Because I said so!”
And ladies, has your husband ever said, “You are exactly like your mom?” Now usually, that’s not a compliment is it? But the older we become, the more like our parents we seem to be.
John says the same thing is true in regards to our Spiritual life. That the longer we’ve been children of God…the more we begin to act like our heavenly Father. And let me say that it IS a compliment to behave more like your heavenly father.
2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears,[a] we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.
A couple of things about looking more like God…
“That’s fine and dandy…
A. But I’m not where I want to be
“I’ve been a Christian for a long time, but I’ve got a long way to go before I act like totally like Jesus.“
That’s ok! That’s natural. Listen to what John says. In our text, John says: “what we will become has not yet been made known.”
Being Christ-like is a process. It doesn’t happen overnight or instantly. There’s a problem when you have the attitude that says: “I’m ok with where I am at. I‘m good enough.” Because you have no desire to grow or to change.
But if you are not pleased with where you are at in regards to your Spiritual growth, that’s good!