Text: I John 3
Theme: To realize and appreciate that Christians are children of God
Purpose: Develop how we should live as children of God
John is someone who had walked and talked, had eaten with Jesus. He was a young man when he met Jesus on the banks of Jordan. When the Baptist said Look the Lamb of God. Now well along in years John looks back and explains this is no religion or philosophy or theory Jesus was the living, breathing Son of God, clothed in human flesh. The very Word of life (Eareckson-Tada). Apparently a group of Christians got involved in false teaching, left the established church, 2.19They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us. It seems though they left they didn’t leave the Church people alone. 2.26I write these things to you about those who are trying to deceive you. John as a Pastor Emeritus type was troubled and the church was disappointed.
Perhaps today you feel disappointed, maybe even disconnected. Maybe Jesus seems distant and cloudy. Maybe some are trying to mislead, have a low view of Jesus, that He is not the Messiah or the Son of God. Life sometimes leads us that way. When things seem not to go right, people sometimes let us down, because we’re human.
3.1 See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
See, take notice, consider, we are not just called children of God, we are. New International Version, See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! New Living Translation: See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! King James, Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God. Behold, calling attention to.
It is not what we do that makes us a child of God; it is the love the Father has given us. Our identity is rooted in the love God has for us. We are made God’s children as a result of God’s love in Christ, but the world has not accepted God’s love in Christ and thus does not know him. Sometimes there is confusion with the term, Children of God. It is sometimes used to describe all humanity, confusing the truth. We are all children of God regardless of what we believe, but here it is we are children of God if we have accepted God’s love through Christ Jesus. Billy Graham writes, As God’s children, we are His dependents. Because we are dependent upon God, Jesus said, “Let not your heart be troubled.” God says, “I’ll take care of the burden—don’t give it a thought—leave it to me.” Dependent children are not backward about asking for favors. They would not be normal if they did not boldly make their needs known. God is keenly aware that we are dependent upon Him for life’s necessities. We are children of God.