It’s a wonderful feeling when you’re living in a close relationship to him. It’s not just about dreading his return,but that confidence plays out in the way you live. You don’t have to go through life looking over your shoulder,so to speak.Verses 28 and 29 are sort of a bridge between the topic of false teachers and today’s topic of being children of God. One of the big things John told us about the false teachers is that they went out from them, they showedtheir true colors by leaving the fellowship… they didn’t abide. The opposite is true: when we continue walkingin the faith, we’re giving evidence that we do belong. When we abide in Him, we take on His characteristics;we carry the family resemblance- righteousness. However you want to define the concept of abiding, part of your definition must be a desire to do right, to live rightly.
II. All In The Family - Our Genetic Makeup (3:1-3)
A. Lavished Love
Remember how we said that John is so overwhelmed with the love of God? Here, he is just absolutelybubbling over with the thought of how much God loves us. He says that we’ve been lavished; not just thatwe‘re recipients of God‘s love, but it’s lavished upon us, we’re smothered in love!
Lavish: expended, bestowed, or occurring in profusion: lavish spending. to expend or give in great amountsor without limit: to lavish gifts on a person.
I’m not sure we really appreciate that. God loves us so much that He is willing (even anxious) to make us apart of His family. It’s a big deal to be a child of God.Imagine: Bill Gates meets a little boy. The boy has no one. He’s been sleeping in the alley and eating out of dumpsters. Bill felt compassion for him. He knew that the boy’s future was pretty bleak… and he knew that hecould help. He could make sure the boy had food to eat. He could fund the boy’s entire future, make sure thathe would always have a great life. Bill Gates has the resources. He could write a check for a few thousanddollars without putting a dent in his bank account…and that would be enough… that would be wonderful! But,what if Mr. Gates decided he wanted to do more? What if he decided to adopt the boy and make him amember of the family and an heir to all that he has…billions of dollars? That’s more than charity, that’s morethan compassion… that’s Lavish Love!That’s the kind of love the Father has lavished on us. He didn’t JUST forgive our sins, He didn’t JUST save us,He didn’t JUST give us a bright future. He made us part of His family. We are NOW children of God. This isn’ttalking about the future in Eternity.
B. It’s OK to be Misunderstood
It’s a fact of life: if you’re trying to live a Christian life, you WILL be misunderstood. I hate that! It sucks to thinkI’m bound to be painted as someone that I’m not: arrogant, bigoted, “holier than thou.” But it will (and does)happen. Why would I expect anything different? They didn’t understand Jesus. Is there anyone in the worldthat was ever more misunderstood than Him?Yes, we are now children of God. But, we don’t look any different to the world. They don’t necessarily see thefamily resemblance. But that’s ok. They misunderstand the Lord, too.