The Privileges of God’s Children
1 John 3:1-10
Privileges come from having special relationships. In the Bible, being a child of God is a right given by God, by His own grace, His own choosing. John 1:12 says, “12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” And along with that right, God has given us some privileges to encourage good behavior.
1. Lavished by unconditional love.
“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.” 1 John 3:1.
· God’s love was not a random thing.
· He planned to love us even before the foundation of the world. See Eph. 1:4.
· His love is extensive. See 1 John 3:1.
· Jesus died a horrible death when we were yet sinners. See Romans 5:6.
2. Destined to reflect Jesus.
“2 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. 3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. 4 Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness.5 But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin.” 1 John 3:2-5.
· The greatest privilege that we can receive here on earth it to be called God’s children.
· A true child of God, then you have been destined to live like Jesus.
“28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.” Romans 3:28-29.
“3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.” 1 John 3:3.
· “in him” means our life is now contained under Christ’s lordship.
· Christ’s shapes our thoughts, feelings and behavior according to His Word.
3. Called to practice Christ’s righteousness.
“6 No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.7 Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8 The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. 9 No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. 10 This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister.” 1 John 3:6-10.
· The Bible recognizes that all children of God continues to commit sin. See 1 John 1:9-10.
· This passage was written to combat false teachers who continued to oppose the gospel.
· False teachers taught that by following their religious law and man-made rules, one can be saved apart from God’s grace.
· Their sin was the sin of unbelief.
· John called them as of the devil in verse 8, they were the devil’s children in verse 10.
· They rejected the Person of Jesus, His word and His work.
· On the other hand, God’s children were warned of their deception.
· They were saved by grace through faith in Christ alone. See Eph. 2:8-10.
· All God’s true children are able to practice Christ’s righteousness as their life are now contained by Him.
· They were encouraged to practice what is right before God and avoid habitual sin. See verse 6.
· God’s seed, His word, Christ’s righteousness remain in every true believer. See verse 9.
God’s children were encouraged to regularly check their behaviors. See verse 10.