24th March 2012
We know that God loves us. He sort of has to. What does does he think of us? Who are we in relation to God?
"This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions."— Colossians 1:21
"When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God."— Romans 6:20-22.
"I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn't confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me."— John 15:15.
"All who are led by the Spirit of God are children* of God. You have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God's Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, 'Abba, Father.'"— Romans 8:14-15.
* Literally "sons", i.e. not just children (of anyone) who happen to belong to God, but children who are born of God.
"See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don't recognize that we are God's children because they don't know him. Dear friends, we are already God's children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is.."— 1 John 3:1-2.
"Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil -- the commander of the powers in the unseen world. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God's anger, just like everyone else. But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God's grace that you have been saved!)"— Ephesians 2:1-5.