Believers, you are sons and daughters of God. Do you ever really consider the depth of what it means to be His son? Or perhaps it is just another part of the Christian vernacular to you. Consider it, Brother. Think about it, Sister. You are God’s son in more than name, though the name is important and powerful. You are His son because He chose to make you His son and He did more than adopt you on paper. He adopted you in heart and soul, gave you a new identity and gave you His Spirit, His nature and character. Your new name, your new identity is truly a new person. And that means that you should be living as this new person, the son or daughter of The Lord God Almighty, King of kings.
Before God adopted you, you were under the Law, it was your guardian. The law protected you and guarded you, it kept you a prisoner until Christ set you free (Galatians 3:23-25). Verses 1-7 explain it this way,
I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything, 2 but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father. 3 In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world. 4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.
Before you came to Christ, you were a child of the world, enslaved to the law, to Satan. The law kept you in its custody. You could only “be good” by trying to follow the rules. But at the right time Jesus came, fulfilled the law by His Crucifixion and delivered us out of slavery by His Resurrection. Verse 6 explains that because you are God’s son or daughter, He gave you His Spirit, the Spirit of His only begotten Son so that your heart, the essence of your being could know Him not as a far-off God but as Father. He made it so that your soul could recognize Him as Loving Daddy. God’s sons and daughters are not slaves, they are God’s heirs, kings and queens, who walk in nobility and freedom and will one day inherit the fullness, the completeness of The Kingdom of Heaven. We walk in the Kingdom now. We walk in the riches of eternal life now.
Prince Charles is the heir to the throne of England. We would be appalled if he decided to live as if he were not the Prince of Wales and got a job at the 7-Eleven. He is the heir to the throne, he doesn’t have to scrounge out a living. As the prince we expect more from him. We expect him to behave like royalty not like the common people. Once we didn’t know God, once we were slaves with the nature of a slave. Now we have His Spirit, we know Him on a level that only His son or daughter could know Him. That means we need to walk like kings and queens not the common people enslaved to the law. Verses 8-11 read,
Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods. 9 But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more? 10 You observe days and months and seasons and years! 11 I am afraid I may have labored over you in vain.
The church at Galatia were acting like slaves again. They were concerned with pleasing the prison guards by keeping the law. They called themselves kings and queens but were putting the shackles of slavery on again by attempting to keep the law. But Paul knew that they didn’t have to live that way. He had been there, He had seeded the church and seen them imbued with The Holy Spirit. He had seen the love the Spirit manifested in them. He had seen their nobility. Verses 12-20 read,
Brothers, I entreat you, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You did me no wrong. 13 You know it was because of a bodily ailment that I preached the gospel to you at first, 14 and though my condition was a trial to you, you did not scorn or despise me, but received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus. 15 What then has become of your blessedness? For I testify to you that, if possible, you would have gouged out your eyes and given them to me. 16 Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth? 17 They make much of you, but for no good purpose. They want to shut you out, that you may make much of them. 18 It is always good to be made much of for a good purpose, and not only when I am present with you, 19 my little children, for whom I am again in the anguish of childbirth until Christ is formed in you! 20 I wish I could be present with you now and change my tone, for I am perplexed about you.
God is love. His nature, His Spirit in us manifests, is demonstrated in us by love. Paul saw the freedom and nobility of God in the church because they recognized Jesus in him and treated him with the love they would show Jesus. They loved Paul and one another the way they loved Jesus. They loved one another as Jesus loved them. Paul saw their graciousness, their love, their royal spirits because they exhibited the Holy Spirit in their love, care, and respect for Paul.
We walk as kings and queens, as God’s children when we walk in the freedom of God’s love. They weren’t concerned with keeping the law, they were concerned with love. They cared so deeply about Paul and each other that they would have been willing to give up their own health for his. They didn’t complain that they had to take care of Paul through his illness, they were honored and overjoyed to show their brother the love of Jesus Christ.
We are free from the law because God is love and His love in us lived out as tangible love for one another satisfies the law! (Matthew 22:36-40, Galatians 6:2). We can choose to live under the promise of sonship as free or we can choose to live under the law as slaves. Paul described it by using the mothers of Abraham’s two sons, Hagar and Sarah in verses 21-31
Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law? 22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman. 23 But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise. 24 Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar. 25 Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. 26 But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother. 27 For it is written,
“Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear;
break forth and cry aloud, you who are not in labor!
For the children of the desolate one will be more
than those of the one who has a husband.”
28 Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise. 29 But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so also it is now. 30 But what does the Scripture say? “Cast out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman shall not inherit with the son of the free woman.” 31 So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.
Ishmael, Hagar’s son was not the son God had promised to Abraham. And in the end, Ishmael was not given any of the privileges of sonship. He and Hagar were cast out. Isaac was the son God promised, he lived with the privilege of being Abraham’s heir, of continuing in the promise. Ishmael persecuted Isaac, he wanted the honor and the inheritance. But it was not for him. The world will do whatever it has to do, Satan will do whatever he has to do to get you to live in slavery to the law instead of the freedom of the Kingdom of God. Satan doesn’t want you to enjoy the eternal life, power, and authority that your royalty gives you. He will try and get you to live in slavery to the law. But you, sons and daughters of God are kings and queens with the Spirit of God in you. You are free from the law, free to love.