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Child of God

This is stunning. As disciples of Jesus, we are the chief objects of God’s fatherly love. I become God’s child through faith and then encouraged by Scripture to imitate my heavenly Father in my daily living. God adopts me.

For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are children of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as children by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with the Messiah, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him. | Romans 8:14-17

Adopted children know they are special. They were chosen. That is good news. In Scripture, the lost are never referred to as God’s children. Ephesians 2:3 tells me that before I was saved I was “by nature objects of wrath” (Ephesians 2:1-3). Romans 9:8 says that “it is not the natural children who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring.”

Instead of being born as God’s children, I was born in sin, which separates me from God and aligns me with Satan as God’s enemy (James 4:4; 1 John 3:8). Jesus said, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and now am here. I have not come on my own; but he sent me” (John 8:42). Then a few verses later in John 8:44, Jesus told the Pharisees that they “belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desire.” The fact that those who are not saved are not children of God is also seen in 1 John 3:10: “This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.”

How do I become a child of God? It happens by adoption. I have received the Spirit of adoption. How great is that? Stunning!

  • Ephesians 1:5 (NASB) — He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus the Messiah to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will.
  • Romans 8:23 (NASB) — And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.
  • Galatians 4:4–5 (NASB) — But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.
  • Romans 9:8 — It is not the natural children who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring.
  • 1 John 3:10 — This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.
  • For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are children of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as children by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with the Messiah, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him. | Romans 8:14-17

 

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