Introduction: NFL Quarterback’s Pre-Game Generosity Impacts Families
There was a time when he worked a night shift in a low paying job and relied on food stamps to feed their large family. His dreams of playing pro football were all but gone. But that all changed after the Saint Louis Rams invited him to training camp in 1999. Lit could he know that he would become a football MVP and Super Bowl winner. And because of those humble beginnings that man and his family are known as the most generous supporters of charitable causes of any NFL player. But apart from that, the Warner family makes it a point, knowing that they are blessed, to be generous in many other ways.
Kurt Warner, the two-time NFL MVP quarterback of the Arizona Cardinals, started a family tradition he calls The Restaurant Game. The night before he heads out for a road game, Kurt and his wife Brenda take their seven children out to a restaurant to eat a family dinner. One they are seated, one of the children will scan the dining area like a quarterback scans the field looking for potential receivers. When the child picks a table, Kurt asks the waiter to add that table’s dinner tab to his own – anonymously. So on any given pre-game night a family eats freely because of the goodness of a family that knows it is blessed beyond measure. (Karen Crouse, “Warner Sets Example for His Family and the Cardinals,” www.nytimes.com, 9/26/08)
We too eat freely from the smorgasbord of God’s grace extended to us in the birth of the Son of God, who became flesh and blood and body and soul and lived among us and died for us that we might receive the free gift of salvation and be called Children of God.
And so we have sampled the Word who is Christ and we have Received the Word who is Christ and we have Seen the Word who is Christ and we have recognized the Word as the Grace of God in Christ.
And so John declares, 1 Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! I John 3:1
Source: Monty Newton
I. Behold The Love Of God 1
1 Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.
A. The Love Of God Is Conferred On Us. 1a
1. Because God loves us, He redeems us out of bondage
but because the LORD loves you, and because He would keep the oath which He swore to your fathers, the LORD has brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you from the house of bondage, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.
2. Because God loves us, He helps those who are in trouble
The LORD has appeared of old to me, saying: Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.
3. God demonstrates His love toward sinners
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
4. Because God loves us, He makes us alive when we are dead
4 ¶ But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,
5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ by grace you have been saved,
B. The Sonship Of God Is Granted Us 1b
1. Castaways shall be the Sons of God
Yet the number of the children of Israel Shall be as the sand of the sea, Which cannot be measured or numbered. And it shall come to pass In the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not My people,’ There it shall be said to them, ‘You are sons of the living God.’
2. Receive HIM
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:
3. Led by the Spirit to become sons of God
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
4. Children of the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY
I will be a Father to you, And you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the LORD Almighty.
5. No longer a slave
Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.
that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,
C. The Enmity Of The World Is Imparted to Us 1c
1. The world does
a. Know us
b. Understand us
c. Know Jesus
2. The World System hates Christianity.
a. Hates Jesus because of His Word
The world…hates Me because I testify of it that its works are evil.
b. Hates us because it hates Jesus.
If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.
c. Hates Jesus just because
But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’
D. Application To The Church
II. Behold The Children Of God 2
2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.
A. We Are Now His Beloved Children 2a
1. We are crucified with Him
knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.
2. The Spirit bears witness that are the children of God
The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
B. We Await The Revelation Of God In The Person Of Jesus Christ 2b
1. Our final figure is yet to be revealed
a. Think about Jesus in the flesh
i. He could see through time, darkness and distance.
ii. He could walk on water
iii. He could make Himself invisible.
iv. He could make Himself untouchable.
v. There was no sickness He could not heal.
vi. He was able to breach the grave and give life back to those who were dead.
a. Jarius’ daughter
b. Widow’s son
c. Sisters’ brother
b. But Jesus in the flesh was nothing like Jesus in His Glory
13 and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band.
14 His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire;
15 His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters;
16 He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.
17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last.
18 I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death.
2. I would love to be able to do all the things Jesus did during his earthly ministry.
3. But what Jesus did pales in comparison to who He is in glory!
a. John got a little glimpse of the Glorified Christ!
b. And when he did, he fell at His feet as dead!
4. There is a big difference between who we are now and who we will be in glory!
C. Application To The Church
III. Behold The Hope Of God 3
3 And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.
A. The Children Of God Are Pure
1. I want you to listen to the Bible Dictionary definition for pure
a. Venerable, sacred
i. Pure from carnality, chaste, modest, an unsullied virgin
ii. Pure from every fault, immaculate, clean
c. When I read this definition, I was ready to throw in the towel!
d. No way for me to do any of that!
2. Everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself
a. We don’t do this ourselves – Jesus does it for us.
b. We cannot make ourselves pure – it is impossible.
B. The Children Of God Are Presented Faultless
24 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, And to present you faultless Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,
25 To God our Savior, Who alone is wise, Be glory and majesty, Dominion and power, Both now and forever. Amen.