4: The Essentiality of God as FATHER

Where are the fathers of those rioting in the streets?
Who are the fathers who sired aborted babies?
Why do fathers desert their children?
How does the world describe a father?
When will fathers come to understand who they are?
Is the father’s relationship with his child essential?
What is a father?

These are questions difficult to answer by common man ~ by common, I mean those who do not know God as their heavenly Father.

 “There is a generation that curseth their father, and doth not bless their mother.” Proverbs 30:11

The ordinary understanding of the word “father” is of one who sires a child by progeneration.

“The begetting of offspring; procreation, reproduction.” Lexico

Without a Biblical worldview, we cannot get past this definition to understand the true purpose of a father and his relationship with his offspring.

We must search the Scriptures to discover what it truly means to be a father.

In this fourth chapter of The Essentiality of God, we hope to show how God is our heavenly Father and His example for His people. We will consider the difference in a father as the world portrays it and how God, our heavenly Father reveals the true example.

“Thy first father hath sinned, and thy teachers have transgressed against me.” Isaiah 43:27

In Isaiah, we have this statement from the LORD of the first man’s disobedience to Him.

God, who created Adam, was his father and since then because of his sin, men do not know who they are. He was the representative of fallen men and in him we see the propensity, the proneness to sin and disobedience. Man continues to live outside the parameters of His boundaries, doing whatever comes naturally without considering the consequences.

We have only a few references in the Old Testament relating to God as father.

“A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.” Psalm 68:5

“He shall cry unto me, Thou art my father, my God, and the rock of my salvation.” Psalm 89:26

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

“But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.” Isaiah 64:8

“For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.” Proverbs 3:12

“When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up.” Psalm 27:10

  New Testament references to our heavenly Father

“Our Father which is in heaven is perfect.” Matthew 5:48
“Not a sparrow falls on the ground without our Father.” Matthew 10:29
“There is but one God, the Father.” 1 Corinthians 8:6
“The Father gives the Comforter.” John 14:16
“He is the Father of mercies.” 2 Corinthians 1:3
“He is the Father of glory,” Ephesians 1:17
“He is the Father of spirits.” Hebrews 12:9
“He is the Father of lights.” James 1:17

  The relationship between the Father and Jesus, His Son.

“The Father reveals the Son.” Matthew 16:17
“No man knows who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him.” Luke 10:22
“The only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, has declared him.” John 1:18
“The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into his hand.” John 3:35
“The Father has life in himself; and gives life to the Son.” John 5:26
The works which the Father hath given the Son are the witness that the Father sent Him.” John 5:36
“I am come in my Father‘s name” John 5:43
Jesus said, ‘I must be about my Father‘s business?” Luke 2:49
“All that the Father giveth me shall come to me” John 6:37
“No man can come to Jesus except the Father draw him.” John 6:
“my Father hath taught me. John 8:28
“my Father honoureth me John 8:54

“Therefore doth my Father love me,
because I lay down my life,
that I might take it again.”
John 10:17

“I and my Father are one.” John 10:30
“the Father is in me, and I in him.” John 10:38
“if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.” John 12:26
“Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”John 14:6
“he that hath seen me hath seen the Father” John 14:9
“The Father is glorified in the Son” John 14:13
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.” John 15:1
“the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, testifies of the Son:” John 15:26
“I am not alone, because the Father is with me.” John 16:32z
“The Father, keeps those He has given to the Son that we may be as one, as they are.” John 17:11
“I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” John 20:17
“as our Father sent Him, even so He sends us.” John 20:21
“the seasons, the Father has put in Jesus’ power.” Acts 1:7
“Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father.” Romans 6:4
“He is the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Corinthians 11:31
“For through Christ we have access by one Spirit unto the Father.” Ephesians 2:18
“His disciples waited for the promise of the Father,” Acts 1:4
“the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world”. 1 John 4:14
“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” 1 John 5:7
“Those who overcome will rule with Him as He is “set down with his Father in his throne.” Revelation 3:21
“The Son shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels;”   Matthew 16:27
“Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.” 1 Corinthians 15:24

The Father’s relationship to us as His children.

Behold, what manner of love
the Father hath bestowed upon us,

that we should be called the sons of God.”
1 John 3:1

“We are children of our Father which is in heaven:”  Matthew 5:45
“He is a Father to us and we are His sons and daughters.” 2 Corinthians 6:18
“And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.” Galatians 4:6
“We pray to the Father which is in secret.”  Matthew 6:6
“Our Father knows what we need before we ask him.” Matthew 6:8
We are to pray, “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.” Matthew 6:9
“We forgive as our heavenly Father forgives us.  Matthew 6:14
“We are to be merciful even as our Father is merciful”. Luke 6:36
“Those who enter into the kingdom of heaven are those who do the will of the Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 7:21
“Grace and peace are according to the will of our Father.” Galatians 1:3

“Let your light so shine before men,
that they may see your good works,

and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
Matthew 5:16

“And call no man your father upon the earth:
for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
Matthew 23:9

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings
in heavenly places in Christ:”
Ephesians 1:3

“It is our Father‘s good pleasure to give us the kingdom.” Luke 12:32
“The Father gives the Holy Spirit to them that ask him.” Luke 11:13
“having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost,” Acts 2:33
“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” Romans 8:15
“True worshippers worship the Father in spirit and in truth:”John 4:23
“With one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 15:6
“The Father is glorified when we bear much fruit.” John 15:8
“he that acknowledges the Son hath the Father also.” 1 John 2:23
“We are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ Jude 1:1
“our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.” 1 John 1:3
“We have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ.” 1 John 2:1
“He has made us kings and priests unto God and his Father.” Revelation 1:6

O, Father in heaven, it is all so wonderful to share what you give us as your children ~ that we may know you, and our Lord and Savior whom you sent to bring us to yourself by the power of your Holy Spirit. That we may call you Abba, Father as we know your love for us is more than we can understand. Continue to overwhelm us with the greatness of your redeeming love. Keep us humble so you can reveal yourself in us as your children. Bring others to yourself through us. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Image: Pixabay

 

The Path to Glory (Part 2)

Which is the right way to heaven?  How do we find this path whereby we share in God’s glory?  It isn’t at all where or what we think it might be.

It is the same path our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ, took, the way that was laid out for Him.  And if we are to “come” to this path—the only way to heaven—it must be “after” Him. (Luke 9:23) He said clearly that the only way is by “self-denial”—taking up our own cross to “follow” Him.  It is not a matter of, “But, wait Lord, until I have done “my thing;” when I have made a name for myself; then I think I might be ready to start on this path. Then I might have an interest in your glory.”
No, there is a cost to enter through this “strait gate”—my life, my own desires, my own glory.

The disciple is not above his master,
nor the servant above his lord.”
Matthew 10:24

 “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus
shall suffer persecution.”
2 Timothy 3:12

Bitter and Sweet Promises

The promises that are given in this way to God’s glory are both hard to swallow, and pleasing to our senses.  Our heavenly Father knows how, and has planned, to direct us and minister to our needs.  On the way, and at the end, are great and precious promises that others will never know or understand because they have not yet entered through this strait gate that leads to the narrow way.

As we look at these promises from God’s Word let us meditate on the connections between Christ, our suffering with Him, and the results.  For example, in the following we are promised that we shall have tribulation; with it—in Christ, we are promised peace, and victory in overcoming the world.

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33

“For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.1 John 5:4

“Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you.
But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.” 
1 Peter 4:12-14

The Heirs of Glory

The path is laid out for, and revealed to God’s children.

“And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God
.”  Romans 8:17-19

The Humbling and Proving

 This is the time of testing and proving, here on this earth, of those who are His.

 “And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. He humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.”  Deuteronomy 8:2-3

“That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:” 1 Peter 1:7

 His Presence and Power with Us

He promises all that we need for the way, though long and tedious it may be.

“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” Isaiah 41:10

 “For this shall every one that is godly pray unto thee in a time when thou mayest be found: surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come nigh unto him.
Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance. Selah.
I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.”  
Psalm 32:6-8

“But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

“So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee.
Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand. Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.”
Psalm 73:22-24

The Nature of Those On This Path

God, our Father uses His own children to draw others to the path.

“Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” Hebrews 13:5

“Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling,
For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.
Do all things without murmurings and disputings:
That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; holding forth the word of life.”
Philippians 2: 12-15

The Holy Bible, God’s Word, is our guide book.  The Holy Spirit is our constant companion and help in time of need.  Through prayer, and in Christ, we are never alone, He is our  joy and the assurance of our safety and endurance to the destination to which He has called us.

“Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;
who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
bringing many sons unto glory
Hebrews 12:2; 2:10
Music: My Grace is Sufficient for Thee