God, our heavenly Father, loves His children. Out of His steadfast love, He disciplines His children. He does this because he had adopted us into His family. Not because of who we are or what we've accomplished, but because of who He is. This is grace upon grace.
As if salvation and adoption isn't enough, there are more benefits to being a child of God. Here is a short list:
- We are blameless, innocent, without blemish, and pure (Philippians 2:15, 1 John 3:1-3). Because of Jesus' work on the cross, we traded our sin for His holiness. As the Father looks at believers now, He sees His perfect and holy Son.
- Therefore we are free (Romans 8:21). Believers are free from the both the bondage and the punishment of that sin.
- And because of the first 2 we can be joyful (Nehemiah 12:43; Joel 2:23). The kind of joy the Bible talks about is happiness without end. We can experience that because our biggest problem, sin, is dealt with. This is something we can't do on our own, but God does it in such a way as to make it a gift.
But how can these things be true? It's because His steadfast love that becomes a refuge (Psalm 36:7). We find and experience our Father's love as we:
- Seek Him (Psalm 53:2; Hosea 3:5). Seek to know what He is like. Seek to know what He requires of us. Seek to know His purpose and our responsibility in that purpose. This can only be done by reading and studying His Word.
- Consider His greatness (Deuteronomy 11:2). This requires mediating on His Word. This will require thinking deeply and asking ourselves the hard questions.
This is specifically done through:
- Prayer - for instruction (Judges 13:8). This is the natural consequence of seeking and considering. If this to be a relationship then we will need to do some talking. We will need instruction on how apply and use what we have read and considered.
- Confession (Ezra 10:1 & 3). Even though we have been saved and cleansed from the consequences of sin, it still remains. Part of being faithful to our calling is confess our sin.
- Worship (2 Samuel 12:16). Ascribing worth is the natural consequence to considering God's greatness.
As we love God and keep His commands (1 John 5:3), we are imitating (Ephesians 5:1) our Savior ... who made all this possible.
Our inheritance is the same as the first born. Our inheritance is a perfect, eternal relationship with God our Father.
If all this is true, how come we don't always "feel" this way? It's because of the sin that is still hidden deep within us. We we are forgiven and cleansed, but we are not yet perfect. Want more? Look to the next post in this series.