Romans 8:8-17, "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ [be] in you, the body [is] dead because of sin; but the Spirit [is] life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and jointheirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together."
A. Two Illustrations of adoption:
1. Moses --- Exodus 2:10 And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh's daughter, and he became her son."
2. Esther --- Esther 2:7 And he brought up Hadassah, that [is], Esther, his uncle's daughter: for she had neither father nor mother, and the maid [was] fair and beautiful; whom Mordecai, when her father and mother were dead, took for his own daughter."
B. All Christians --- Ephesians 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,"
C. Adoption means --- the Placing of A Son.
1. Christians Belong To God's Family.
2. We are God's Legally Recognised Heirs.
D. As the heirs of God, we have: --- New Privileges --- New Responsibilities.
The Privileges of The Adopted:
I. We Have Received His Spirit.
A. Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." --- V. 15, "For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father."
B. Galatians 4:6 And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father."
II. We Have Been Given His Name.
A. When a child is adopted by earthly parents, he usually takes their name.
B. God has given us the status of sons and the privilege of bearing His name:
Ephesians 3:14-15, "For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,"
Acts 26:28, "Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian."
I Peter 4:16
III. We Are Being Conformed To His Image.
A. Romans 8:28-29, "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate [to be] conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren."
B. When we become sons of God, the Holy Spirit begins to conform us into the likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ.
II Corinthians 3:18, "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord."
C. This is the commencement of what will be finalized at the second advent of Christ.
I John 3:1-2
IV. We Must Expect His Chastening.
A. Make no mistake about it --- this is a Blessing --- a Privilege --- for those who are the sons of God.
Hebrews 12:6-11, "For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected [us], and we gave [them] reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? For they verily for a few days chastened [us] after their own pleasure; but he for [our] profit, that [we] might be partakers of his holiness. Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby."
B. When God's chastening hand is upon us, we should rejoice --- evidence of our salvation.
V. We Experience His Comfort.
A. II Corinthians 1:3-4, "Blessed [be] God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God."
B. Isaiah 66:13, "As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you; and ye shall be comforted in Jerusalem."
C. The Lord, not only Saves us, --- He Protects and Comforts us just as a hen gathers her chickens under her wings.
VI. We Should Enjoy His Liberty.
A. Romans 8:21, "... the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God."
B. Servants Do Not Have The Liberty Which Sons Have.
VII. We Are Going To Share His Glory.
A. Romans 8:17, "And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and jointheirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together."
B. I Corinthians 2:9, "But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him."
C. I Corinthians 3:21-23, "Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours; Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; And ye are Christ's; and Christ [is] God's."
D. Revelation 3:21-22, "To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches."
The Responsibilities of The Adopted:
I. We Have Received His Spirit --- Let's Not Grieve Him.
A. Ephesians 4:17-32, "This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. But ye have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another. Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil. Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with [his] hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you."
B. There is no greater Incentive To Holy Living than the constant reminder that the Holy Spirit dwells within.
II. We Have Been Given His Name --- Let's Not Dishonour It.
A. Acts 9:15, "But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:"
B. II Timothy 2:19, "Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.
C. Acts 5:41, "And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name."
D. Nothing hinders the work of God more than Christians dishonouring His name.
III. As We Are Being Conformed To His Image --- Let's Be Submissive To The Hands of The Potter.
A. Jeremiah 18:1-6, "The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make [it]. Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay [is] in the potter's hand, so [are] ye in mine hand, O house of Israel."
B. Isaiah 64:8, "But now, O LORD, thou [art] our father; we [are] the clay, and thou our potter; and we all [are] the work of thy hand."
C. Sometimes His dealings with us may be painful, and often perplexing --- but aways for our good.
IV. We Must Expect His Chastening --- Let's Be Strengthen By It.
A. Hebrews 12:11, "Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised (strengthen) thereby."
B. I Corinthians 11:27-32, "Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink [this] cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of [that] bread, and drink of [that] cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause many [are] weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world."
C. In our times of testing, we should ask: --- What new lesson is the Lord seeking to teach me?
V. As We Experience His Comfort --- Let's Share It With Others.
A. II Corinthians 1:4, "Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort (encourage) them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God."
B. Hebrews 10:24-25, "And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some [is]; but exhorting [one another]: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching."
C. Let's be careful that we do not become selfish and self-centered in our enjoyment of His blessings.
VI. As We Enjoy His Liberty --- Let's Be Victorious Over Every Form of Carnal or Legal Bondage.
A. John 8:36, "If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed."
B. Romans 8:2, "For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death."
C. Romans 6:12-19, "Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. Neither yield ye your members [as] instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members [as] instruments of righteousness unto God. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness. I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness."
VII. We Are Going To Share His Glory --- Lets Be Humbled By This Great Prospect.
I John 3:1-3
A Search For The Truth About Salvation