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The Believer's Filial Relationship With God.

The Believer's Filial Relationship With God.

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Published by glennpease
by Rev. F. O. BLACK


" For ye are all the children of God by faith in
Christ Jesus." — Galatians iii, 26.
by Rev. F. O. BLACK


" For ye are all the children of God by faith in
Christ Jesus." — Galatians iii, 26.

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Published by: glennpease on Jul 25, 2014
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THE BELIEVER'S FILIAL RELATIOSHIP WITH GOD. by Rev. F. O. BLACK " For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus." — Galatians iii, 26. In the text and context, the apostle shows the superior excellency of the Gos- pel dispensation to that of the law. Those who were under it, were shut up to the faith w T hich should afterward be revealed. It was but as a schoolmaster to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. The blessings of Heaven, through the Gospel, are no longer confined to a single nation, but are offered to all. For there is neither Jew nor Greek; there is 150 SOSHIP neither bond nor free ; there is neither male nor female ; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. All true believers are the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. I shall first consider the relationship of true believers to God, under the Gos- pel dispensation. I need not dwell upon the truth that believers are not the sons of God in the sense in which Jesus Christ is the Son of God — whose gene- ration is ineffable ; being one in nature, perfections, and glory, with the eternal Father. His relationship is natural and glorious. But —
 
1. In common with all other intelli- gent creatures of God, there is a rela- tionship out of which originate many and binding obligations. In this respect, they have all one Father, and in a particular sense is He the Father of Spirits. In the intellectual powers, moral endowments, and immortality of the soul, man resem- WITH GOD. 151 bles his glorious Creator — for upon these was originally impressed the true image of God. Angels are the sons of God; and in tiiis they greatly rejoice. Adam was the first born son of God upon earth, and in his original, possessed the image of God, and in this consisted his chief happiness and glory ; nay, the whole race of men is said to be the offspring of the great God ; that is, they are His intellec- tual creatures, capable of bearing His image, and becoming partakers of the Divine nature by faith in the promises of the blessed Gospel : yet this natural relationship is not what is meant by the children of God in the text. 2. They are the children of God by their profession. In this sense, Israel is called His first born, and His son. "When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called him my son out of Egypt." — Hosea xi, 1. Yet one may 162 SOSHIP
 
be His by profession, and still not be His in the sense of the text. There is more contemplated than the mere pro- fession of Christianity. 3. This sonship consists mainly in their being justified, regenerated, and adopted into the family of believers. Justifica- tion is the entitling act of God's grace, and changes the state, but not the nature ; it gives title to all the privileges and blessings of the new covenant. Faith is the condition upon which this blessing is secured. Faith gives personal connec- tion with Christ, whose righteous merit is the ground of a sinner's justification before God. Regeneration is the quali- fying act of Divine grace, and is one of the blessings of the new covenant — and the sinner being justified, has a right to claim this qualifying act — it being one of the blessings to which he is enti- tled by the justifying grace of God. WITH GOD. 153 Justification giving title to all the bless- ings of the new covenant, and this being one of these blessings, of course it gives title to this; hence the qualifying act follows invariably, and in quick succes- sion the entitling act. Regeneration is a change of moral nature, conforming that to the image of God. There is, there- fore, title and qualification for all the blessings of the new covenant. What- ever, therefore, is promised by the Gos-

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