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 8:14-16]
as we talk about being in God’s family, what are some of the implications? this single truth has so many facets, but paul has made a few clear here. as God’s children…
- God calls us out of darkness, into his marvelous light. (1 pet 2:9-10) so we are no longer followers of the enemy, (eph 2:1-7) no longer a recipient of God’s wrath, (rom 8:1) but an heir to God’s righteousness because of the work of his Son, Jesus, on the cross. (2 cor 5:21)
- God calls us to know him intimately. through the gospel, God reveals his righteous character to us. (rom 1:16-17) he shows us his beauty through his Spirit, so that just as a little child knows his earthly father and trusts him completely, we too, can cry out “daddy!”, with a closeness and confidence that we can joyfully put ourselves completely in his care. God doesn’t hide himself from his children. (matt 7:7-8) through the Spirit, through his word, and through a family of believers, we are called to seek him and know him. (hosea 6:3)
- God calls us to be holy through the power of his Holy Spirit, which he gives to us as a gift when he calls us to himself. (2 cor 1:22) we are not called to be holy in our own strength. without the Spirit, no one can live for God’s glory. (rom 8:5-11) that’s why the Spirit in us is what testifies that we are his. and this is not a Spirit of fear, but of power, love, and sound mind. (2 tim 1:7) what an incredible guarantee! God promises to make us look more and more like his Son, (rom 8:29-30) and as we grow to know him more, we will start to walk in step with the Spirit, making every other desire in our flesh pale in comparison to who he is. (gal 5:16-25) we will see the fruit of the Spirit growing in our hearts. this is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. all of these are evidence of the Spirit in us.
so as we sit in the presence of God today, we can come with full assurance that we are his, confidently ask that he show us more of his beauty, and humbly submit to the power of the Spirit at work in our hearts.
Father, what grace you show me in the righteousness you’ve gifted to me, even though i was dead in my sin. thank you for your mercy. thank you for calling me into your light. i trust your Spirit at work in my life to show me more of your holiness, my fallen heart, your grace, and your joy. thank you for not keeping yourself from me. i’m in desperate need of you. amen.
~ arwen eastman