Children of God
First part of a Series
“Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God – children born not of natural descent or a husband’s will, but born of God.”
John 1:12-13 (NIV)
Our great God has a wonderful gift for each of us personally. He wants us to be part of His family. He enables us to be His children. He loves us so much He gives us this right. Because we’re so very special to Him.
And God has offered this to everyone – to all those who receive Jesus and believe in his name. There are no other criteria – no requirement to follow a set of rules or standards of what God wants us to do. It doesn’t matter if we’re male or female, black or white, rich or poor, slim or more full figured. It doesn’t matter if we have a disability. Our age or background or intelligence don’t make a difference. Because as we see in the next verse of John 1, Jesus was full of grace. We become children of God because of that, because of what God has done for each one of us in Jesus Christ. God is love, totally and perfectly, and He loves us so much that He sent his son to live and die and rise again that we might become the people we were always intended to be.
God decided He wanted to make us His children, even though we don’t deserve it. Nothing we can do can make us worthy of it – we can’t force God to adopt us into His family. We don’t have the perfect love that would be needed for us to meet His standard, to reflect the same characteristics as God Himself. The moment we have even a hint of selfishness in our thoughts we fail to live up to the name of the family of God. No amount of human effort can solve that problem. But we don’t have to worry because that’s what Jesus came to do.
When we truly accept Jesus, acknowledging our sin – our lack of love – and changing our minds in repentance to follow him, demonstrating our commitment through baptism, we’re born again as children of God. And when that happens Jesus himself comes to live in us through the Holy Spirit. So the reason we become God’s children is because His own son comes to live in us! And when Jesus does that he brings with him God’s nature, God’s “spiritual DNA” if you will. In Jesus we can inherit all the privileges and blessings of being a child of God, not because we deserve it but because Jesus is the heir to these things. As Romans 8:17 tells us, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs – heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ.” And so then when God looks at us he no longer sees us as sinners, but instead he sees us as Jesus Christ, his own perfect, beloved son. That’s how we become His children. That’s how much He loves us. That’s the miracle of salvation and the new life God offers us in Jesus Christ.
In the rest of this series over the next few weeks we’ll explore in more detail what it means to live as a child of God everyday.
Lord God, thank you so much that you have given us the right to become your children through your beloved son Jesus Christ. In his name we pray.
Study by Simon Williams
Worldwide Church of God Cambridge
Comberton Village Hall
Saturday 2:00 pm
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