Heir To a Fortune
Griffith Baptist Church – 6/22/08
Text: Romans 8:15-17
Key verse: Romans 8:16 - The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
A man had a heart attack and was rushed to the hospital. He could receive little company and was not to be excited. While in the hospital a rich uncle died and left him a million dollars. His family wondered how to break the news to him with the least amount of excitement. It was decided to ask the preacher if he would go and break the news quietly to the man. The preacher went, and gradually led up to the question. The preacher asked the patient what he would do if he inherited a million dollars. He said, ’I think I would give half of it to the church." The preacher dropped dead.
If you were told that you were going to inherit a vast sum of money, what would you do? What would you think? How would you react?
We Christians are sitting on a fortune and acting like paupers
o We still behave with the same poor, old nature
o We do not live like we are children of the King
o We think in terms of what we owe instead of what is already bought and paid for.
1. The legal aspect of bringing a person into a family
2. In this we are brought in as adult children into the family of God
3. All of the former attachments to previous relationships do not exist any longer
4. This is not 2nd class status but is a firm and unbreakable, binding family relationship
1. From a spiritual standing we are born into the family of God, as in the physical sense
2. John 3:3 – Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
3. This is new birth, the first birth is physical, and the other spiritual
4. This is simply being made alive because we were dead in and because of sin – Ephesians 2:1 - And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;
If we are children of the King, we need to act and think like children of the King.
Transition Statement: First, we need to understand that we have an improved status.
1. An Improved Status - 15
A. A New Freedom
i. We are bought out of the marketplace of sin
ii. We are free in Christ
iii. True freedom for those in Christ - John 8:32-36 - 32And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. 33They answered him, We be Abraham’s seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free? 34Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. 35And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. 36If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.
B. A New Family
i. We have a new family headed in the same direction - Years ago a man was searching his family roots and visited several cemeteries and read many inscriptions on the tombstones. There was one tombstone on which was engraved "Pause now stranger as you pass by; as you are now, so once was I. as I am now , so soon you will be. Prepare yourself to follow me!" Next to the tombstone someone placed a piece of wood engaged with this note... "To follow you I am not content until I know which way you went."
ii. The old family was the family of sin
iii. The new family is made up of born-again people just like you
iv. Galatians 3:26 – For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
C. A New Father
i. Our Father in Heaven has unmatched wisdom - We are like the man who approached God & asked Him, "Lord, up in heaven how much time is a million years?" "Well," God said, "a million years is but a second in heaven." "Oh!" said the man, "and up in heaven how much money is a million dollars?" "Well," said God, "a million dollars is only a penny in heaven." "Great!" said the man. "God, give me one of your pennies." "All right," said the heavenly Father. "Just wait a second."
ii. A Holy Father – Luke 11:2 – And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
iii. The same Father as that Jesus referred to – John 20:17 – Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.
iv. Abba conveys a closeness with the Heavenly Father, like us calling our earthly father, Daddy.
Transition Statement: Not only do we have an improved status, we also have an impeccable witness
2. An Impeccable Witness - 16
A. The Holy Spirit communicates with our spirit
i. He is a master communicator – There is a story about a senior saint named Wilma who had been a member of a church for long time. In her later years she needed the assistance of a cane to help in walking. As she was talking with the pastor, she would make points by lightly tapping him on the chest or shoulder with the handle of her cane. One Sunday after a morning worship service, the pastor was standing at the back of the sanctuary and Wilma hobbled up to him and said, "That was a pretty good sermon." In true Christian piety the pastor replied, "Thank you Wilma, but it wasn’t me it was the Holy Spirit." Without batting an eye she tapped him in the middle of the chest with her cane and said, "Oh no, if it was the Holy Spirit it would have been a lot better than that."
ii. He bears witness with our spirit
iii. It is a gift of God as evidence of our relationship to Him - 1 John 4:13 - Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit.
iv. We are sealed (confirmed and kept) by the Spirit – Ephesians 1:13-14 - 13In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, 14Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
B. The Holy Spirit corroborates our family ties
i. He gives evidence that we are God’s children
ii. Your doubts fail in comparison to the Spirit’s proof
Transition Statement: Our status is improved, we have a flawless witness, and last we have an impressive inheritance.
3. An Impressive Inheritance - 17
A. This is more valuable than gold or silver or all the wealth we could ever imagine
i. Song - Lord, you are more precious than silver, Lord, you are more costly than gold, Lord, you are more beautiful than diamonds, and nothing I desire compares to you.
ii. How do you ascribe worth to one who is priceless?
iii. How do you determine the wealth of your relationship with God?
iv. What can you put up against it that could measure up?
B. Heir - A person who inherits or is entitled by law or by the terms of a will to inherit the estate of another.
C. What is ours in Christ?
i. Everlasting life
iii. Rule and reign with Christ
v. A new body and mind
D. Indescribable - 1 Corinthians 2:9 – But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
E. Indestructible - 1 Peter 1:4 - To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,
Concluding Statement: As heirs we have a wonderful present to live in and a wonderful future to look forward to. God has taken us into His family, made us His own and promised us a future that is bright and glorious.
Can you say that you have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
Christian, are you behaving like a child of the King?
Are you glorifying Him in your life?