Family Likenesses

A minister stood up before his congregation one Sunday morning with a big grin. “Four days ago,” he said, “I became a grandfather. And I am delighted to tell you that not only is he a very beautiful baby, but – he looks exactly like me!”
Many parents and grandparents have had the same thrill: the new arrival is going to grow up to look like them! The Bible has a lot to say about how God feels when we are born into his kingdom, his family.
Firstly, no human baby is brought into being because he/she decided that it wanted to exist. The baby was dependent on the parents’ decision. And the same is true in the spiritual sphere. If you have any interest or faith at all in God, you may be sure that that in itself is a sign that He is calling to you.
Secondly, when a human baby is born into a loving family, there is great rejoicing. The Bible tells us that there is great rejoicing in heaven every time anyone of us turns to God and asks Jesus to be our Saviour.
Thirdly, a human baby can do nothing to ‘gain’ life. All that baby has to do is to accept life, and begin to live. There is nothing you can do to ‘earn’ your salvation,  you have to go through Jesus, and what He did for you on his death on the cross.
There is a fourth thing about babies. They grow up! They take on the language and behaviour of their family. Paul, writing in Colossians, put it this way: “You used to
walk in the way of sexual immorality, anger, … slander, and filthy language. But now you have put on the new self, which is being renewed in you through the knowing your creator. Therefore as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.…”
Sadly, we will never be perfect. All our lives, we will sin. But the Bible has two descriptions of sin. One verb in the Greek refers to occasional actions. As long as we
live, we will commit haphazard sins. But there is another tense of the verb to sin, and it refers to habitual, ongoing actions. If these are still ruling our lives, then we do not have the family likeness, we do not have God’s Spirit within us. We need to go back to new birth: by turning to Jesus Christ.

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

 

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