ALREADY GOD’S KIDS
“Not only so, but we who have the firstfuits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not have, we wait for it patiently.” Romans 8:23-25.
The evidences of creation’s groaning are all around us. We see it in destructive weather patterns and in natural disasters such as wind, earthquakes, fire and floods. It is evident in the violence that happens in the animal kingdom. We feel utterly helpless at the power of volcanic eruptions, hurricanes and tornados. We feel instinctively that it is unnatural for the earth to be heaving and writhing as though in pain.
What of our own groaning? Do we not groan in our pain and suffering, our emotional upheavals and the helplessness and hopelessness we feel when we have no control over our circumstances? Paul says, “Take heart, child of God. These are the birth pangs, like a woman in labour. A whole new order that is coming into being. Our travail is not in vain. We will not bring forth wind.”
On what do we place our hope? Just as the firstfuits of the harvest assure us that the full harvest will soon be ripe, so we, who have the Holy Spirit already, know that He is the guarantee of the fulfilment of God’s promise.
When God created the first man and woman, He fused his body and spirit. Created from the dust of the earth, God breathed His Spirit into him and he became a living being. Death is unnatural; the separation of body and spirit was not God’s intention. It was sin that resulted in death. Redemption will not be complete until our bodies are restored to their original perfection and reunited with our spirits.
When Jesus rose from the dead, He became the firstfuits of the resurrection.
“But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfuits of those who have fallen asleep. For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead also came through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in turn; Christ the firstfuits; then, when He comes, those who belong to Him. Then the end will come…” 1 Corinthians 15:20-24a.
When this happens, our adoption as God’s sons and daughters will be complete. We are already His children. He views the finished product. He treats us as though we are already perfect. We are in the process of becoming what we already are.
“For in Christ all the fullness of the deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness…” Colossians 2:9, 10a.
“For by one sacrifice He has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.” Hebrews 10:14.
Wow! Do you realise what that means? We do not have to gain God’s approval or earn our position with Him. Since we are in Christ Jesus through faith, we have already been approved as His sons and daughters and made perfect from His point of view. His Spirit is at work in us, fashioning us into what we already are, mirror images of His Son and our brother, Jesus Christ.
“See what great love the Father has lavished on us that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know Him. Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like Him for we shall see Him as He is. All who have this hope in Him purify themselves, just as He is pure.” 1 John 3:1-3.
We have a strong motivation for persevering in our faith and hope in God and in godly living because the rewards far outweigh the cost. What we endure now because of our loyalty to Him is temporary and cannot be compared with the eternal reward of being made complete in Him.
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