God wants to have many children. In fact the Bible teaches us Jesus is the firstborn among many brethren. He’s also called the first-fruits and the firstborn from among the dead; so obviously there are more fruits and in time more born from among the dead.
When Jesus’ disciples asked him to teach them how to pray he told them “Pray, our Father who art in heaven…” Up until that time there wasn’t much talk at all about God being “Father”, but when Jesus came along he changed all that and we started to see God in a new light. Through a relationship with Jesus Christ, the only begotten son of God, we could find ourselves in an intimate relationship with God like never before. Instead of God being a fearful mysterious God up in the heavens somewhere he started to be seen as a present, caring and personal God. Of course this doesn’t mean there isn’t a healthy fear or respect of him anymore it just means we can start to see ourselves as his family now.
Before Jesus went to the cross he promised the disciples he wouldn’t leave them as orphans. He told them he would send them a comforter, someone that wouldn’t just be with them but would actually be in them. In fact in John 14:20 we read where Jesus said, “At that day you shall know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.” Wow! So the whole of the Trinity–Father, Son and Holy Spirit is going to take up residence within the believer. There’s no other relationship that is that intimate anywhere wouldn’t you agree?
So God’s plan all along is for him to have as many sons as he can possibly produce. The way he does this is by way of Jesus Christ, and his ultimate sacrifice on the cross, that enabled the Holy Spirit to come and live in us which makes us his offspring. The Word tells us “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.”
One thing relating to calling God “Abba Father” I found interesting. The gospel of John tells us “Those that received him (Jesus Christ) are given the power to become the children of God.” What Paul is telling us in Romans eight about the “Sons” of God is a little different. A child would never be given the authority to run the family business but a Son would. A child is one born of God, but a son is one taught of God. A son represents a mature offspring that has been trained by God, but the only bad thing about this is his favorite training tool is suffering.
Even Jesus himself learned obedience through the things he suffered. It is unlikely we will get away without a measure of our own. Especially if we are to mature and be prepared for our place in our Father’s kingdom. If we are to rule with him we will have to suffer with him too. God isn’t going to put an untested, immature child in a place of authority in his kingdom. We are told to count it all joy when we face trials because that’s what develops endurance and faith. Once we, or rather our faith, is fully tried we will come out the other side like purified gold ready as a trustworthy son to carry out the Father’s business.