Thursday, October 6, 2016

Practically considering why it is important to know God the Father

Image result for fathers
Galatians 4:6-7 "Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” 7 Therefore you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son, then an heir through God."

Every reader has a father or had had one. Some readers had good dads, others had absentee ones. Some reading this post today may have had bad experiences or none at all. For others, perhaps your father passed away. Mine has been gone for two years. I miss him. In my Christian-life at least, I have found my own conception of "father" being constantly taught. Whatever the situation, everyone has had some experience of fatherhood. 

Oftentimes I come across Christians who have no issue connecting with Jesus as Savior and Lord. Moreover, when it comes to the Person and work of the Spirit, many Christians are receptive to His aids and comforts. However, when it comes to the First Person of the Trinity - The Father - there is often that disconnect. 

Every Christian from conversion onward is being retaught about the concept and identity of "Father"
In the above opening verse of today's post, we find the Holy Spirit's ministry of aiding the Christian to verbalize God as "Abba" or "Father". As I said a moment ago, all of us have had some sort of experience with fathers. Even if one's experience was a good one, a "good dad" is still imperfect. There are times where even good dads will falter and fail. By nature, the father in human families functions as an illustration of the "Heavenly Father". Sadly, because of the fallen condition of our world, that "Father image" is expressed in broken ways. As Jesus teaches in Luke 11:13 "If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” It is this blogger's conviction that Satan's tactic is to undermine the concept and revelation of "Father" as much as possible, since knowing God the Father is so central to salvation.

More often-than-not, our human fathers give to us a certain image of father that we bring into our salvation experience. To experience salvation is to come to a true knowledge and relationship with God in the Person of the Father. Jesus defines what it means to have eternal life in John 17:1-3 "Jesus spoke these things; and lifting up His eyes to heaven, He said,“Father, the hour has come; glorify Your Son, that the Son may glorify You, 2 even as You gave Him authority over all flesh, that to all whom You have given Him, He may give eternal life. This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent."

Henceforth, the remainder of the believer's sanctification (that process whereby the Holy Spirit is conforming the Christian to the attitudes and actions of Jesus Christ as they co-operate with Him) is all about re-learning Who and what the Father is all about. 

Three practical reasons for getting to know the Father as a Christian
Let me offer three applications for Christian living that correspond to the three points brought out in the last few days:

1. Having the presence of the Father ensures that I never am alone, orphaned or without assurance. Only the Lord Jesus Christ, in His finished work at Calvary and His continuing mediation for the Christian in heaven can minister this profound reality. The Lord Jesus Christ brings to us the presence of the Father and the Holy Spirit connects us to the Person of the Father. 

2. Having the Person of the Father available to me as a Christian means I can enjoy all the benefits of adoption in sonship. The Holy Spirit ever reminds the Christian that they are a child of God through adoption (see Romans 8:14-16). My own sense of identity in a world where my earthly father no longer resides is securely anchored in the Person of God the Father by the Person and work of the Holy Spirit.

3. Having the Paternal power of the Father through the Bible gives me strength for daily living. The desire to pray and talk to my heavenly Father is fed by the scriptures. When I find myself under His Fatherly discipline, I'm reminded of His unfailing love (see Hebrews 12:4-5).

No comments:

Post a Comment