There is no greater honor, right, or gift, as the one bestowed upon an individual who steps across the line of faith into Christ the LORD. John the apostle, under the direction and inspiration of the Holy Spirit of God said so. Listen to it now…
John 1:12,13 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, who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
It is not stated as a future endowment. It is not implied that having received this right, it could somehow be taken away in the future. The “right” to become children of God, is reserved for, and bestowed upon, those who receive Jesus and believe in His name. In addition, this is an eternal right. It is not eternal because of us, the believers. It is eternal because of the ONE bestowing the blessing, and conferring the right. It is guaranteed in His power, not mine.
I am now… a child of God.
As such, with this great honor bestowed upon those Christ-followers, their behavior should match this position of honor, and privilege. But does it? I’m concerned at the number of people I know who live in fear, or in opposite contrast to what they claim as their badge of honor – a Christ follower – a Child of God.
In our world today, there is a shadowy veil of hate growing at an alarming rate, fueled by unseen forces, with the intent of annihilating the words “Christian” or “Christ-follower” from our vocabulary. People of faith around our nation are just now beginning to recognize the first salvos breaking across the bows of churches everywhere. Christian businesses have been under attack for awhile, but now the increased activity in the legal sector demonstrate this hate has just begun to stretch its talons of destruction. What’s interesting, but sadder still, is that most Americans don’t realize this isn’t a new event.
The pursuit of the destruction of anything Godly, but especially the people of God, is as old as the garden of Eden. The result of God’s children’s actions in that idyllic setting was fear, blame shifting, and rationalization of their behavior. What are the three clearest signs, that nothing has changed since then? Fear, blame shifting, and rationalization of behavior… is the ubiquitous nature of sin around the world right now.
So… what is “supposed” to be the defining evidence of the true Christ-follower? I suggest that the “NATURE” of God is what is bestowed upon the true person of faith, and is evidenced when one becomes a CHILD of God. That evidence is LOVE.
1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.
1 John 4:16 And we have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.
So what is bestowed upon every child of God?
The right to become God’s children, living in the love of God, sharing the love of God, and one day when we graduate to the next life, living in the presence of the love of God… eternally.
There is no greater honor, right, or gift.