Summary: In this message, let us see seven characteristics of a child of God. Are you showing that you are one of God's children?
Introduction: Jesus came unto His own and they rejected Him, but those who believe are called the children of God (John 1:12).
Yet, the child of God should be seen and recognized by the characteristics of their lives.
Can others see Jesus in you?
In order to make sure that they do, what are seven characteristics of a child of God?
1. The Child of God Believes that Jesus is the Messiah
A. John begins by revealing that the child of God believes and accepts that Jesus is indeed the Messiah or the 'Anointed One'.
B. John shares in I John 5:1, "Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him."
C. Not only is it necessary that the child of God believe that Jesus is the Messiah, but that they believe that Jesus came in the flesh. I John 4:2 shares, "Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God."
D. This is where it all begins, because if you cannot accept that Jesus is the Messiah, then you cannot be a child of God.
E. As with our text, there are some actions that must be displayed in your life as you attempt to be more like Jesus. We must be committed to serving Jesus, we should learn the walk of Jesus, and we should in turn become more like Him also (I John 2:5-6).
2. The Child of God Should Live Righteously
A. WWJD, yes it all comes down to What Would Jesus Do? We need to learn what He would do and what He would want us to do as Christians.
B. John wrote in I John 2:29, "If we know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him."
C. Are you choosing to live righteously or are you still allowing the flesh to take control? Remember, John tells us not to follow after our flesh and the lusts associated with it (I John 2:15-17).
D. Remember it was Paul who told us that in the past we walked like every one else did, but now as believers we walk differently (Ephesians 2:2-3). We have put off the old person and put on the new man which is patterned after Jesus Himself (Ephesians 4:22-24).
3. The Child of God Keeps the Commandments of Christ
A. Whoever you obey or follow, you become that person's servant. Paul told the Romans to stop serving sin and therefore stop being instruments of sin (Romans 6:11-14).
B. John also wrote in I John 2:3, "And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments."
C. In a recent survey of 1,000 unbelievers, they were asked what they expect from believers in Jesus? More than 90% of the responses included that they only expect believers to live as believers proclaim. Since believers say they are Christians, they should live and act just like Jesus.
D. Can others see Jesus within your life?
4. The Child of God Does Not Practice Sin
A. I did not say that the child of God never sins. For I am here to tell you that Jesus was the only sinless person to ever walk this world.
B. What I am telling you is that the true child of God strives to avoid sin in every aspect of their lives. If they sin they confess that sin and receive cleansing from it (I John 1:9).
C. John again spoke in I John 3:9, "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin: for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God."
D. The child of God does not willingly sin against God, but strives in every way not to sin, but if they sin not only do they confess that sin, but they also know that they have an Advocate, Jesus Christ the righteous (I John 2:1).
5. The Child of God is Hated by the World
A. Jesus warned His followers that because He was so hated and despised they too would be hated by the world (John 15:18-21)
B. John did not want the children of God to be surprised by their persecution so he wrote in I John 3:13, "Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you."
C. The closer to God you become, the more separate from the world you also become.
D. Will you endure the hatred of this world in order to receive the blessing of God?
6. The Child of God Loves Other Believers
A. One thing that defines a believer is their love for others. John said in I John 3:14, "We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death."