The other day, I was asked about what faith in Christ has really given me—specifically in terms of a sense of fulfillment, or completeness. What has believing in Jesus changed in me. I thought about this for a moment, and gave my answer: God.
As a non-Christian, I didn’t really recognize any sort of need or emptiness that I might have had, spiritually speaking. I was probably too hardhearted for that. But after coming to Christ, I came to realize how much I had to be thankful for. And not just that I was being saved from judgment and hell, but what I was being saved into—a family. Christ’s family. A family I could not be a part of on my own. And I get to call God my Father. I get to spend eternity with him. And that is a wonderful, glorious gift.
This is something that I have on occasion taken for granted. But I shouldn’t. My adoption into the family of Christ, to be able to call God my Father, was incredibly costly. It is a “sonship” that comes not by my merit or my birthright. It is a gift—a “sonship”, an adoption that comes by promise. I love how Charles Spurgeon explained it in a sermon on Galatians 4:6:
We have a sonship which does not come to us by nature, for we are “born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” Our sonship comes by promise, by the operation of God as a special gift to a peculiar seed, set apart unto the Lord by his own sovereign grace, as Isaac was. This honour and privilege come to us, according to the connection of our text, by faith. Note well the twenty-sixth verse of the preceding chapter (Gal. 3:26): “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.”
As unbelievers we know nothing of adoption. While we are under the law as self-righteous we know something of servitude, but we know nothing of sonship. It is only after that faith has come that we cease to be under the schoolmaster, and rise out of our minority to take the privileges of the sons of God.1
As believers, we have been all made sons and daughters of God. And our Father is a good father—the best father. But there’s something in a great many of us that gets nervous about calling him our Father. But we can’t do that. He is our Lord, yes, and should be addressed as such. He is our God, yes, and should be addressed as such. But he is also our Father. Because of Christ, we are his children, and with us, he is well pleased as we become more like Jesus. And he delights in us addressing him as such. So do not hesitate to do it.