THE PRIVILEGE OF BEING SONS OF GOD
“I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my son; this day have I begotten thee.” (Psalms2:7) KJV.
The above verse points to the Lord Jesus who is our model of a son of God. And bear in mind that when we use the word “sons” it is in reference to both male and female because in Christ there is no distinction of sexes (Galatians 3:28). We are privileged to be adopted as sons of God. Jesus, who is God, became incarnate and took upon Himself the form of men. He became a partaker in flesh and blood (Hebrews 2:14), which means He became like us. Jesus is the firstborn among many brethren (Romans 8:29). Our destiny is to be conformed to the image of Jesus (Romans 8:29).
He was the only begotten son of God in eternity but now by reason of his death and resurrection, we have become the many sons, we have become brothers of Jesus (Hebrews 2:10-13). Hebrews 2:10-11, “For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing MANY SONS TO GLORY, to make the Captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren.”
Jesus was the one who declared the decree in Psalm 2:7 concerning God affirming that Jesus was begotten again in resurrection He was begotten by God in His resurrection to be the firstborn Son of God among many brothers (Romans 8:29). He was the only begotten son of God from eternity (John 1:18; 3:16). After incarnation, through resurrection He was begotten by God in His humanity to be God’s first-born son. By reason of the death and resurrection of Christ we have become sons of God. But to all who did receive Him, who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God (John 1:12).
The Bible says we have come to the church of the firstborn enrolled in the heavens (Hebrews 12:23). We Christians born of God are the first fruits of His creatures (James 1:18) that He has reaped in His creation. In that sense we are the firstborn sons of God. Hence the church, composed of us, is called the church of the firstborn (Hebrews 12:23). As the firstborn sons of God, we have the birthright. We have privileges which we will see as we read on.
Our birthright as the sons of God includes the inheritance of the earth (Hebrews 2: 5-6), the priesthood (Revelation 20:6), and the kingship (Revelation 20:4), which will be the main blessings in the coming kingdom and which the profane , world loving and seeking believers will lose at the Lord’s coming back. Eventually, this birthright will be a reward given to the overcoming Christians in the millennial kingdom. The destiny of Jesus is our destiny (Hebrews 2:14). As sons of God, we are co heirs with Jesus. God chose us in Christ to be His sons from the foundation of the world, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will (Ephesians 1:4-5). God marked us out before hand to destine us into sonship. We were predestinated to be sons of God even before we were created. Hence, as God’s creatures we need to be regenerated by Him that we may participate in His life to be His sons. Sonship implies having not only the life but also the position of a son.
God’s marked out ones have the life to be His sons and the position to inherit Him. To be made holy, that is to be sanctified by His putting Himself into us and then mingling His nature with us is the process, the procedure, whereas to be sons of God is the aim, the goal, and is a matter of our being joined to the Son of God and conformed to a particular form or shape, the very image of the firstborn Son of God (Romans 8:29; Colossians 1:15).
WHAT IS EXPECTED OF US AS SONS OF GOD?
As sons of God, we are to preach the gospel of the kingdom to gather more who will also be sons together with us (Matthew 24:14). We are to promote the kingdom of our Father by bringing sinners in. We have been given the ministry of reconciliation whereby we reconcile the world back to God. We are ambassadors of God’s kingdom representing the interests of the kingdom because we were reconciled to God through Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:18-20).
We are expected to hate the world, that is the system of the world orchestrated by the devil who is referred to as the god of this world. The Bible says the love of the Father is not in those who love the world or the things that are in the world. These things are the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life (1 John 2:15-17). In fact it is also stated in scriptures that if we love the world, we become adulterers and adulteresses (James 4:4). Demas who was a co- worker with apostle Paul but he forsook him because he loved the present world. Demas went the way of the world (2 Timothy 4:10).
We are expected to be perfect and holy like our father in heaven (Matthew 5:48, Ephesians 1:4). Holiness is God’s nature and as His children we are not to be fashioned according to the former lusts but according to the Holy one who called us to be holy in all manner of life because it is written, “You shall be holy because I am holy.”(1 Peter 1:14-16). It is a privilege to partake in God’s holiness. As sons of God, we are expected to walk in the footsteps of Jesus Christ because Jesus is our elder brother. He is our role model. And as our elder brother we are to live as He lived on earth (1 Peter 2:21).
PRIVILEGES OF BEING SONS OF GOD
As those who have been born again into the heavenly household, we have certain privileges. A few were highlighted earlier such as the right to priesthood, kingship etc. The following are some of the privileges we have for being sons of God.
- WE ARE ABLE TO TALK TO GOD AND RELATE TO HIM AS A GOOD AND LOVING FATHER
We may take this for granted, but our heavenly Father loves us deeply. “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God” (1 John 3:1). We can relate to Him as a good and loving Father as a result. He understand us and has compassion on us as His children. “As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear Him” (Psalm 103:13). As his children, he promises to take care of our needs. “For the Gentiles seek after all these things and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all”- (Matthew 6:32).
He forgives our sins. “I am writing to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of His name” (1 John 2:12). He gives us many good gifts, especially the Spirit. “If you then being evil, now how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him! (Luke 11:13).
- WE ARE LED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT
Because of the saving work of Christ, we enjoy the new life of the Spirit. “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God… (Romans 8:14-17). As His children, the Spirit of God testifies to our spirit that we are His children in an incredibly unique way.
- GOD DISCIPLINES US AS HIS CHLDREN
The trials and tests we face in this life prove our sonship. It also requires us to respond with perseverance. “And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? “(Read Hebrews 12:5-6).
- WE RELATE TO OTHER BELIEVERS AS MEMBERS OF ONE FAMILY
The church is a family. We relate to other followers of Christ as family members. “Do not rebuke an older man but encourage him as you would a father younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, younger women as sisters, in all purity.” (1 Timothy 5:1-2). As sons of Almighty God, we have a new family who are kingdom minded and love the Lord as seen in (Mark 10:29-30).