Understanding sonship

father-son11Proverbs 3:1: My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments,

Adam was called the son of God (Luke 3:38), not in a biological sense but in a spiritual sense. So when some religion, have a problem with the fact that Jesus was the son of God, they exhibit crass spiritual ignorance.

As far as we as human beings are concerned, there may be three types of relationship that can be classified as sonship. (And by sonship I am not being gender specific, so don’t get hung up on that term.)

[There are two birth processes: natural and spiritual birth is when a person’s spirit is referred to as being born of God.]

There may be three forms of “sonships” based on the three parts of man (1Thessalonians 5:23) :spirit, soul and body.

God is called the father of spirits (Hebrews 12:5-11). No one else can be called by that name. He is spiritual and he is the father of spirits, he is the origin and the source of spirits in the entire universe. Of course there are rogue spirits, but that is another matter all together, but it is obvious they were not initially like that.

There is the sonship where we derive our physical form from. The natural father determines the sex of child, the X and Y chromosomes from the man leading to female and male children respectively. Of course the physical look of the child is based on the dynamics of the mother and father’s genes.

There is the father of the soul which I call the influences from other person’s souls who impact on other souls. The soul is a particular description of the human being. At creation man was called a living soul (Genesis 2:7). The society, schooling and the word of God, etc, form the soul; so in that sense, they “father” the soul, shape it, and are responsible for its eventual outcome. But the son has control over who the soul-father is, than  the other two  types.

The bible says that we should take in the engrafted word which is able to save your soul (James 1:21). A father is origin, the source of essence.

This discuss will now focus on the spiritual birth via-a-vis spiritual sonship and the responsibility of both father and the son in that context.

The father has the responsibility to care, provide for and discipline the child, while the son has the necessity to live according to the father’s dictates.

Adam was called the son of God (Luke 3:38) because God was his origin and provided everything that he needed, but he gave him a limit. He said he should not eat from a particular kind of tree in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2:7-25).

As a father, he blesses Adam, saying he should multiply and replenish the earth and subdue it (Genesis 22:26-28). As a father he has plans for the child.

Jesus Christ and God the father has a father-son relationship. I firmly believe that was not an eternal reality but was something that happened at the incarnation.

There was a prophetic phrase in the book of psalms written by David and quoted in the book of Hebrews in reference to Jesus: you are my beloved son, “today” I have begotten you (Psalm 2:7, Hebrews 1:5). There was a day he was begotten, which I believe is the day that the conception of Jesus Christ occurred in the womb of Mary.

Angel Gabriel told her, that as a virgin, she would be pregnant and that will happen when the Holy Spirit overshadows Mary and the “holy thing” that will be born shall be called the son of God (Luke 1:26-38).

After Jesus Christ was baptised by John, the heaven became opened and the Father said that this is my beloved son with whom I am well pleased (Matthew  3:16-17). it is the business of the son to please the Father. Also on the mount of transfiguration, God spoke from heaven, with Peter, James and John present, saying Jesus is his beloved Son (Matthew 17:1-8).

Jesus was the Eternal Word but not the Eternal Son so that his experience can actually serve as a parallel to our, as our prototype Son.

Though God knows us eternally, based on his omniscience, we can only become his sons in reality when we become born again not of corruptible but incorruptible seed of the word of God (1Peter 1:23-25). The book of Hebrews confirms that in everything Jesus was made like us, his brethren; he became the prototype of what our experiences would be (Hebrews 2:11-18).

Just as it happened with Jesus, we also, in time, must have a time when we become a child of God. As the Son of God, his life was marked by instruction from the father which her obeyed, even to the death on the cross (Philippians 2:8).

To confirm that the biblical definition of sonship goes beyond that of natural origin. We see the example of a king in Israel who when Elisha wanted to die, said to him: my father, my father (though not related to him by birth), the horseman of Israel and the chariots thereof, also prior to that, the same Elisha used the same expression to refer to Elijah (2Kings 2:12, 13:14).

Therefore, a father help to gives definition of who we are and gives supports, he is one who is in charge of training us.

He gives us identity. Therefore you need to seek for how God sees you rather than anyone’s opinion, since he is our heavenly father. The bible says that being our father, we are named by the name of God (Ephesians 3:14-15).

Many Christians suffer identity crisis because of an absentee father, whether physically or emotionally, intellectually or spiritually, the father is absent, the bible say that if my father or mother forsake me the Lord would take me up, perform those roles (Psalm 27:10).

A father is someone you look up to, and God the father is the one that you can look up to and he would not disappoint. The father shapes the life of the children and that is why we are supposed to be subjected to God the father, to have his beautiful correct shape for our life.

It is such a blessed thing to be a child of God. To be a child of God also means you are a god. Jesus made this claim to the Pharisees who were indignant that he was referring to himself as the Son of God. He quoted a place in the book of psalms, where certain people were referred to as gods, being children of the most high (Psalm 82:6, John 10:34-36).

The son carries the potential and purpose of the father and is supposed, in a spiritual setting to be the extension for the father. Paul called Timothy, “my true son in the gospel (Philippians 2:19-22, 1Corinthians 4:17).” This describes closeness between them whereby he sees to Timothy’s spiritual development and upbringing, providing for him opportunities for development, and spiritual training.

There are several layers of spiritual sonship that has been examined in this discuss. One is that of God and Adam, which is not recommended because of the disobedience that derailed that relationship.

There is the father-son relationship between God the father and God the son, Jesus Christ; which is perfect one and it is in the context of that that all of us can come into a relationship of sonship with the Father. By becoming part of him (through dying and rising from the dead with him in a spiritual sense through believing [Ephesians 2:5-6, Galatians 2:20, Romans 6:5-5, 8, 10:9-10]), we automatically become as he is; we become sons of God.

Jesus Christ called the Pharisees murderers, saying the desires of their father the devil they do (Ephesians 2:5-6). This shows that in a spiritual sense we are supposed to do the desire of our father in heaven, which was what Adam did not do and was punished for it.

God being our father means he is our spiritual origin in the new birth where we become born of the Spirit of God. It all means our spiritual development is hinged on our continued relationship of obedience with him. We need to seek to know the desire of our father and do them.

We should understand that he cares for us and not go about in life carrying any burden, but lay our burdens at his feet (1Peter 5:6-7). The father has a responsibility to discipline the child and what is clear is that the discipline is never pleasant, but it is through that that we become partakers of the holiness of God; as sons, we become shaped right.

The focus verse highlights the fact that the father is responsible for teaching and giving direction and in an on-going manner too, because it is a dynamic relationship, not a static one. Therefore as sons of God, we need to continually walk in obedience and constant relationship with the father.

There is also the father-son relationship between human beings. The spiritual father, is positioned in your life to have a special relevance to your gaining spiritual identity and attaining to your spiritual pursuit, offering support and a lifetime commitment. Paul has such a relationship with the church in Corinth and the other churches he helped establish (1Corinthians 4:14-17).

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