Gal 3:26-4:4-7 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus…4 God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba (papa), Father!” 7 Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.
1 John 3:1 Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!
- Jesus makes it clear that God is our Father in heaven (Mt 5:16, 45, 48, 6:1, 9, 11, 18:14, 23:9). We relate to God by the means in which He has laid forth in His Word, on His terms, on the basis of who He is, who He says we are to Him and how we are to relate to Him.
- The Spirit of Jesus the Son lives in us. Through His Son we build relationship with our Father in heaven. The same confident love, privilege, and assurance that Jesus enjoyed is now offered freely to us as sons and daughters.
John 17:24,26…You have loved them as You have loved Me…26…that the love with which You loved Me may be in them and I in them.
- Jesus even goes as far to say that the love that the Father has for Him is the SAME love the Father has for you and I!
- Because of sin, lack of true repentance and bad experiences and examples with natural fathers this it’s not always easy to relate to God as our Father. Nevertheless the Truth remains and beckons us to believe that God is our Father in heaven. He’s full of mercy, compassion, truth, power, affection and desire for our relationship with Him to be healthy and whole.
- We are called to be bold and confident sons and daughters that know who our Father is!
The Father crushed the Son on the cross in order for this to be a reality offered to us (Isa 53:10).. He’s serious about us. He’s serious about being our Father and us being His children.
Getting a right understanding of God
2 Cor. 3:18 beholding…the glory of the Lord…being transformed into the same image from glory to glory
- The “beholding and becoming” principle – whatever we behold (meditation unto revelation) in God’s heart towards us becomes awakened in our heart back to God (transformation).
- Beholding God’s heart refers to studying about it, speaking of it, and praying it until we understand and thus encounter truth and are changed/transformed on the inside. As we change our mind (understanding) about God then He changes our emotions and unlocks our hearts to love more. We are empowered to walk in righteousness more as we grow in our understanding of the love of God. Wrong understanding about God damages our hearts and causes disability in our walk. God wants to empower us to be lovers of God, thus He reveals Himself as a lover to us.
1John 4:19 We love (enjoy, pursue) Him because He first loved (enjoyed, pursued) us.
A Father who’s Glad
Ps 16:9-11 Therefore My heart is glad, and my glory rejoice… In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
1 Chr 16:27 Honor and majesty are before Him; strength and gladness are in His place.
Ps 21:6 For You have made him most blessed forever; You have made him exceedingly glad with Your presence.
- The emotion of our Father that is easy to grasp is His gladness. We will struggle comprehending His affection for us until we have a foundational understanding of His gladness. The Father’s capacity for gladness is infinite in measure and eternal in duration. He designed the human spirit in His image, with great capacity for gladness. This is huge! What an invitation!
- As we become students of God’s emotions, we grow in revelation of His tender mercy, His gladness, and His affection. In this understanding of our Father, when we stumble in sin will run to Him with confidence and sincere repentance instead of running from Him in condemnation and shame.
- How does your Father feel when He looks at you? This question is one of the most important questions in our spiritual journey. Our view of God’s emotions affects how we approach God, especially in our weakness and stumbling.
When we get a glimpse of a God that possesses the fullness of joy in His presence (on His Throne, Revelation 4) we get confident in our joy. This becomes our strength (Neh 8:10) and our ability to be joyful in all circumstances.
Nehemiah 8:10…do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord (God’s joy) is your strength.
- When stressful situations arise I close my eyes and picture my Father in heaven and I’m settled and comforted when I see that gladness is in His place (1 Chron 16:27). Jesus was a master at this, He lived connected to the Father.
A Father who has Thoughts about You
Jer 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.
- “I think of you”…what a powerful reality. This is what He’s like; it’s almost too good to be true. He governs all of creation and He thinks of me. When I’m going, when I’m coming, when I’m sleeping, when I’m traveling, when I’m at home, when I’m working… “I have thoughts of you”, says God.
David had firsthand knowledge with the thoughts of God over him:
Psalm 139:17-18 How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! 18 If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand…
Ps 40:5 Your thoughts toward us cannot be recounted to You in order; if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.
- 1 Samuel 13 is the first time that David is mentioned in scripture. God speaks of him to the prophet Samuel. God says that he is a “man after His own heart”. God had been thinking of David for some time. In 1 Samuel 16 the prophet goes to the house of Jesse to seek out this man and it turns out to be a teenage boy.
- What was David doing at the moment in time when God was whispering to Samuel about him back in chapter 13. It Could’ve went something like this: David’s doing his mundane daily duties and little did he know that the Father of Glory…the Ancient of Days who wraps Himself in light) was talking about him to the greatest prophet of the day. The God who has no bounds, holds the stars in His hands, tells the lightning where to strike and the seas where to stop… and He’s talking to Samuel about this shepherd-boy that He’s been watching and thinking about. This is what our Father is like!
A Father who Delights and Rejoices
Ps 16:3 As for the saints who are on the earth, “They are the excellent ones, in whom is all my delight.”
Job 33:26 He shall pray to God, and He will delight in him, he shall see His face with joy
Prov 8:30 And I was daily His delight, rejoicing always before Him
Isa 62:4 But you shall be called Hephzibah, and your land Beulah; for the LORD delights in you
Deut 30:9 The LORD your God will make you abound in all the work of your hand…for the LORD will again rejoice over you for good as He rejoiced over your fathers
Jeremiah 32:41 Yes, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will assuredly plant them in this land, with all My heart and with all My soul.
Zeph 3:17 The LORD your God in your midst, the Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.
- We must apply our name to every verse above and say it back to God. When we hear the words and speak them with our mouths it speeds the process of belief in our own hearts and has impact on our feelings and thoughts about God.
- The thoughts of the Father over you are inspired by His delight in you…His delight, pleasure, enjoyment, and joy is in you.
- We don’t have to be ‘working’ for the Kingdom to earn His delight. This is who God is. He loves us and this love awakens love/service to Him (1 John 4:19, John 3:16).