1 John 3:1-3 / Children of God (Sermon notes and Audio)

Posted on April 10, 2014


This is the eleventh in a series of verse-by-verse expositions of the book of 1 John. This message was delivered at Hillcrest Baptist Church on the evening of April 6, 2014. This message deals with what it means to be a child of God. This post contains an audio recording of my message, along with my sermon notes. Please note that the sermon notes are not a full transcript.

AUDIO – Listen Now:


1Jon 3_1-3


1 John 3:1-3

This verse tells us who we (believers) are: Children of God.

Becoming a child of God is not automatic, we must be adopted into His family.

Galatians 4:5

Adoption is an amazing act of love, in that one takes a child as his own, and sees no distinction between the adopted child and a natural born child.

The New Testament word for adoption means “to place as an adult son.” It has to do with our standing in the family of God: we are not little children but adult sons with all of the privileges of sonship.

There is a distinction between children of God and sons of God. God’s adopted children are are given the status of a son. This is significant, because it is a son who would be heir to the inheritance.

The word “adoption” simply means to receive the place of a son.

Under Roman law, the father had absolute authority over a son as long as the father lived. Therefore, when we are adopted by God, He has absolute authority over us.

Secondly, under Roman law, adoption was permanent, it could not be undone.

This provides another picture of our adoption into God’s family. Once we become a child of God, it cannot be undone, it is eternal.

Next, under Roman law, the adopted son had all the rights of his new family. Likewise, the adopted believer is a joint heir with Christ.

Finally, under Roman law, the adopted son lost all rights and identification with his old family.

It is the same with God, we become a new creation and enter into a new life, when adopted into God’s family.

A believer should never look back.

Biblical adoption only happens after coming to God in faith.

Galatians 3:26

The believer has all the rights and privileges of a son of God.

Galatians 4:6-7

Adoption gives us a special relationship with other believers.

Galatians 3:28

1 John 1:2-3

Adoption makes us a new person.

2 Corinthians 5:17

The real aliens in this world are Christians.

Hebrews 11:13

the world does not know God, and since we take on His characteristics, the world doesn’t know us.

This verse tells us who we are becoming: like Christ.

The Christian life is a process of becoming more and more like Christ.

Romans 8:29

This process will not be complete until we see Christ face to face.

1 Corinthians 13:12

When Christ returns he shall conform every believer to his image.

This transformation defies description, but glorified man will be as much like Christ as possible, without actually being deified.

Living in the reality of Christ’s return makes a difference in a Christian’s behavior.

Since Christians someday will be like him, we (like Paul) should desire to become like him now.

Philippians 3:12-14

That calls for a purifying of sin, in which we play a part

2 Cor. 7:1

James 4:8

1 Pet. 1:22

Posted in: Sermons