Cornerstone Community Church

Sons and Heirs

Intro:  Gospel we live.  Who are we?  H.S. Yearbook, work people- didn’t fit in.

Big Idea:  Union with Jesus by faith brings the status & experience of sons.

I. Jesus grants us equal status as sons by faith (vv. 3:26-29).

-         Status is often used to create conflict, put others down & lift yourself up.  Ill. HS

-         All are sons of God thru faith in Messiah.”  Jesus sets all who believe on equal footing.

-         The greatest benefit of the gospel is that of adoption- He claims us as His children.

-         Baptized => clothed with Messiah  B. marks the entrance into the community of faith.

-         Baptism, like circumcision, is a sign that we are justified by faith (Rom. 4).

-         In baptism, we are clothed with/ put on Messiah.  Ill. Baptism & adoption ceremonies

-         All of you are one in Messiah”- all earthly differences are irrelevant in Christianity.

-         We don’t lose our race, station or sex- they just don’t matter w/siblings.  No 2nd class.

-         App. No place for fighting/arguing about who’s better.  Ill. My kids- none more.

“Faith secures the union; baptism signifies it outwardly and visibly.”  John Stott

“When we say that Christ has abolished these distinctions, we mean not that they do not exist, but that they do not matter.  They are still there, but they no longer create any barriers to fellowship.”  John Stott

“Whatever may have been their former differences, Christ alone is able to unite them all.”  John Calvin

Transition:  Status does matter, and all who trust in Jesus have the same status- sons.

II. Jesus grants us status as adult sons by faith (vv. 4:1-3).  Uses everyday example to explain.

-         Children, though heirs, are under the authority of others.  Ill. kids can’t sell the house

-         They remain under an occasionally oppressive authority until coming of age.

-         Israel under Moses was a minor suffering under the authority of the Law.

Analogy:                                   Minor   ==> Adult => Inherit

History of Redemption:            Moses   ==> Christ => 2nd Coming

-         With Messiah, the community of faith is like an adult child awaiting inheritance.

-         They no longer needed the Law to “beat ‘em down & shut ‘em up.”  Ill. Drive, vote, drink

-         App. Grow up & stop acting like kids.  Mature in keeping with your status.

“We are neither prisoners, awaiting the final execution of our sentence, nor children, minors, under the restraint of a tutor, but sons of God and heirs of His glorious kingdom, enjoying the status and privileges of grown-up sons (which is the only sense in which the New Testament would allow the modern fashion that man has ‘come of age’).”  John Stott

Transition:  Jesus grants all who believe the status of adult sons and heirs.

III. The Father redeemed us by the work of Jesus for us (vv. 4-5).

-         At the right time, God sent (ejxapostevllw) His Son.  The Father initiated salvation!

-         The Son, to be sent, must have existed before the Incarnation.  Points to divinity!

-         Born of a woman, born under the law”- parallel statements about the Incarnation.

-         He was fully human, and subject to the law- circumcised etc.  He was an ordinary Jew.

-         in order to redeem thus under the law”- redemption is the reason for Incarnation!

-         To save us from the tyranny of the Law, He had to be under, obey & satisfy it.  Ill. Matrix

-         in order … adoption as sons”.  Redemption => adoption.  Objective status in Messiah

-         Gift of salvation includes justification & adoption.  Ill. All-inclusive: air, hotel, food…

Transition: Our status as sons of God depends on Jesus’ work for us to redeem us.

IV. The Father assures us by the work of Jesus in us (vv. 6-7).

-         Because of this status, the Father sent (ejxapostevllw) the Spirit of His Son in our hearts.

-         The Son dwells in us thru the Spirit.  Jesus works in us thru the Spirit.

-         Christ’s work for us => work in us.  Objective status => subjective experience.

Personal Experience:            Flesh      ==>  Spirit  => Resurrection

-         The Spirit causes us to cry out to the Father, as Father (Calvin).  App. Prayer

-         The Spirit causes us to follow God’s law, as sons who love their Father not fearful slaves.

-         Gospel you live: slaves or sons?  Slavery lies about God, gospel & self.

19 I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh.  20 Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. Ezekiel 11 (NIV)


God’s purpose was not only to secure our sonship by His Son, but to assure us of it by His Spirit.”  John Stott

“For if any man feel in himself a love toward the Word of God, and willingly hears, talks, writes, and thinks of Christ, let that man know, that this is not the work of man’s will or reason, but the gift of the Holy Spirit; for it is impossible that these things should be done without the Holy Spirit.”  Martin Luther

 “No man is a Christian who has not learned, by the teaching of the Holy Spirit, to call God his Father.”  John Calvin

Conclusion: Status matters- objectively it determines your “place” or “position” and what is expected of you.  Subjectively it affects how you think about yourself and how you act.  Our equal status in Christ should promote unity, fellowship & cooperation.  It is also a privileged status, received by grace producing that humble confidence that enjoys the Father’s presence.

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