Summary: Who can be children of God?
Children Born of God
Rev. Sean Lester
May 4, 2009
For Living Water Assembly of God, Newberry, Michigan
QUOTATION QUESTION. Who can become God’s children? (30)
(NIV) John 1:11,12 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.
(KJV) John 1:11,12 He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.
All families have their unique culture, values, and traditions.
- Many good things can be said about them.
o Patica and pasties.
o Memorial day, thanksgiving, and grandparents
- However, they also have their issues.
o Religion, occupation, and views of right and wrong.
o Rejection, abuse, expectation
o Love, but limited to human wisdom and understanding
The way of life in the family of God
- The challenge to love all people.
- The challenge to make the right decision despite personal consequences
- The challenge to accomplish and to demonstrate the power of God to unbelieving people.
- The challenge to nurture a growing family of God in the midst of a fallen culture.
- The challenge to prove God right and to know God through testing His Word.
Proposition: The life that people crave for righteousness, fulfillment, and relationship with God is found in the family of God that is created around faith in Jesus Christ.
Interrogative: How does one become a part of the family of God?
Transition: You have to be born into it by making a decision to put your faith in Jesus Christ.
I. Receive Jesus
a. To receive Jesus means to accept Him for who He is and for what he wants to do.
i. He is the Son of God, that means that He is God who decided to become a man in order to guide people out of sin and into a right relationship with God and to live with Him for all of eternity.
ii. He is the Lord who has the right to command us in what we do.
iii. He is the Savior who frees us from sin and it’s penalty and gives us a fulfilling life now and for eternity.
iv. He is the Word who spoke and continues to speak the truth and to apply it to righteous living.
b. By contrast, to reject Jesus means doing what the Jewish rulers did:
i. Rejected the truth of what he was saying because he wasn’t the person approved to say it. (who can forgive sins)
ii. Rejected the truth of what he was saying because it wasn’t what they wanted to hear. ( I am the bread of life, and that is more important than the bread I multiplied)
iii. Rejected the truth of what he was saying because it meant approving of people that were unsavory.
iv. Rejected the truth of what he did because it threatened the position and power of those who stood to lose.
c. Receiving Jesus means the same for us today as it did for the Jewish people back then.
i. Searching Jesus’ Word for the principles of truth that help us make righteous decisions.
ii. Calling all people, of all classes into fellowship with us and with the Lord.
iii. Recognizing that Jesus has the right to command us to act, to appoint and to relieve us of responsibility, and to move us into any area of ministry anywhere.
iv. Accepting Jesus without demanding His power.
d. Jesus was rejected on the face of what he said for many reasons. Such as…
i. He said it and not them
ii. He was not academic
iii. He said things too plainly
Practical example: One of my students in the Outdoor challenge suffered greatly from distrust of adults. Ronnie, the son of wealthy lawyers from New York, was in a condition where he wouldn’t take instruction because to do so would imply that he was dumb. Consequently, he was behind in school. With other people, he would dominate the conversation so that others would be unable to share. Consequently, he didn’t have many friends. The “sin” that caused his parents to send him to us was finding neighbors wheel chairs and throwing them into the river. To be certain, his behavior was caused by the mistreatment and neglect of others. Because of his background, the process of convincing him to accept us as caring people who would help him was long and frustrating. But, all people are born into sin and manifest sinful behavior for the same reasons. Salvation comes from being brave enough to trust the Savior and to listen to Him about how to live, what He thinks of you, and what must change.