- Religion and Philosophy»
- Christianity, the Bible & Jesus
Is God Your Father?
Becoming a Child of God
There was a song, written in 1955 by Jill Jackson Miller and Sy Miller called "Let There be Peace on Earth." It is usually sung around the Christmas holidays and has a message about each of our responsibilities to promote peace on this planet. It says that peace should begin with "me." I will admit that peace is a good thing, and Christians should do all they can to promote it. We need to live at peace with everyone, if we can at all do it. However, the goal of this song for peace on the entire earth will only come with the return of the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ.
However, there is another problem with the theology of this song which has always bothered me when singing or hearing it. And it is a common misconception among many. That misconception is the assumption that God is the Father of everyone in this world. The lyrics state:
"With God as our Father, brothers all are we. Let me walk with my brother, in perfect harmony."
The truth is, there is nowhere in Scripture that talks about the universal fatherhood of God. Scripture is clear that all men are created by God. But because of sin, we are all alienated from Him for eternity.
I. Sin Separated Us From God
Although created in the image of God, man, who should have maintained an intimate relationship with the Lord, lost that relationship. Adam sinned, leading to death (Rom 6:23). But it wasn't just physical death, which is when the soul is separated from the body. It was also spiritual death, which is a separation from God (Ephesians 2:1-3). And, apart from Christ, we will experience eternal death. This is a separation from God forever in what the Book of Revelation calls the Lake of Fire (Revelation 2015).
Far from God being our Father, Scripture teaches that we were without hope and without God in the world (Ephesians 2:11,12). We, who are Gentiles, didn't even have the hope of the Messiah to come because we weren't part of God's covenant people, the people of Israel. We had absolutely nothing to which we could look forward.
Sadly, being without hope is the worst state someone can be in. Could you imagine a doctor telling you that you've got cancer and there is no hope of curing it. And just think what it would be like for someone to tell you that there is absolutely no hope of seeing your loved one ever again. It is a horrible thought!
Someone has said that: "Man can live about forty days without food, about three days without water, and about eight minutes without air. But he can only live about one second without hope." If people would only have realised how hopeless the situation was before Christ, they might have been tempted to give up on life. And that is where mankind would still be without Him. Sadly, though many in this world don't realize it, that is where they still are, unless they accept the gift of eternal life through faith in Christ.
II. Through Christ We are Adopted into the Family
Scripture teaches us that those who have accepted Christ's sacrifice for their sins were chosen by God "before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him" (Ephesians 1:4). It goes further to tell us that: "In love He, (God the Father), predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself...." (1:5a). We who originally were not a part of the family of God, who were His enemies, have been adopted through faith in Jesus Christ.
Becoming part of God's family is not automatic to every human being. It is by invitation of God and He extends that invitation to all who believe and receive Jesus Christ. John 1:11,12 indicates that God the Son gives us that right. It states:
"But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name."
We enter into that family through the New Birth which our Lord talked about in John 3. We were once spiritually dead in sin. Christ gave us a new life as sons and daughters of the Living God.
II. We are Heirs and Joint-Heirs with Jesus Christ
We learn in Romans 8:14-16 that by faith we have received and are lead by the Spirit of God. God is now our Abba. This is an informal Aramaic term for Father. It's the same as saying that God is our daddy. Like a child can address his daddy, we can address our heavenly Father. Not only that but the believer has been made an heir of God and joint-heirs with God the Son. The Father has appointed the Son to be heir of all things (Hebrews 1:2). And every adopted child will receive the full inheritance that Christ receives by divine right. Literally everthing in the universe belongs to us because it was given to Christ. This is totally beyond what any of us can fathom. It's no wonder that the Apostle John proclaimed:
"See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are..." (IJohn 3:1).
So I ask you: Is God your Father? He wants to be. He's done all the work so that you can be adopted into His family. All you have to do is accept the sacrifice of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ for your sins, and you too can be an heir and joint-heir with Christ. What a wonderful future you can have. You can go from no hope, to an eternal hope. For the Christian, our best days are always ahead of us. Come join us in His forever family today!