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(Romans 8:15-17) Leaning on our Father's Arms.

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Being Christian means, we have been adopted by the most wonderful dad in the World – God the Father. Our adoption gives us a wonderful, confident, and blessed relationship with our Heavenly Father. So often we tremble at the struggles of life, but we must remember all we have to do is cry out to our “Abba Father”.

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INTRODUCTION:
Many of us have noted -
When you are little, your father is very big;
you are weak, but he is very strong;
you know very little and he seems to know everything,
you feel feeble >>>>> compared to his powerful presence.
We should come to God
When your father is very powerful,
you feel like you can do anything.
You feel safe and secure in his great arms.
You are comfortable, if not confident, to ask him for anything.
He takes you to places,
shows you things,
entertains you,
houses,
feeds,
clothes
and educates you.
And when you go to school you can boast about how great your father is—how much greater than other children’s fathers.
(Barrowed from: Philip Jensen, Dependent Father)
It is not a wonder that God uses the picture of a father and son
to describe his relationship to the church.
introduces us to this concept. In a bold statement - he declares -
Romans 8:14 ESV
14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
You and me are the children of God.
(((((((((((God is our father, and we are his children.))))))))))))))))))
Essentially,
Versus 15 – 17 describe what it means to be a child of God.
>>>>It expands v. 14 to explain what it means to be a child of God.
It expands on
If you have a personal trust in Jesus Christ this morning,
then consider what kind of relationship you have with God the father.
Romans 8:15–17 ESV
15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
Essentially -
Based on
According to Romans

PROP: We ought to be leaning on the everlasting arms of our heavenly Father.

PROP: We should come to God as a child of a loving father.

TRANS: and this texts gives us 3 characteristics that teach us why.

Our first
The First Characteristic: We have a

1) Wonderful Relationship - Because We are Beloved Children. ()

Routinely,
Scripture calls the Christian the beloved.
John especially uses this term, but is really found throughout the Scriptures.
Paul, Peter, James, and John use that term.
Paul, Peter, James, and John use that term.
Why?
Because our relationship with God is characterized by the love of a Father.
Paul teaches us that in verse 15
Romans 8:15 ESV
15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
Paul often moves from negative to positive.
To begin with, our relationshi
And he does that here.
In a negative sense -

a) Our relationship is not of fear.

Paul seems to almost repeat himself over and over in Romans 6, 7, and 8.
Don't make the mistake of thinking polishes being hard on sin.
Think Paul is being this old time revivalists to his hammering his fist down on sin.
Paul's focus on living the new life has more to do with giving us something wonderful, the guilting us into faithfulness.
We have talked a lot about sin in the last few months.
Paul seems to almost repeat himself over and over in , , .
Paul seems to almost repeat himself over and over in , , and 8.
>>>>But don't make the mistake of thinking Paul is just being hard on sin.
>>>>Don’t think of Paul as being this old time revivalists who his hammering his fist down on sin.
Paul's focus on living the new life has more to do with -
giving us something wonderful,
then guilting us into faithfulness.
You see, according to verse 15, our life used (Past tense) to be characterized by fear.
How is being a slave to sin a fearful thing?
ILLUSTRATION:
So many people are fooled into thinking that a person who is free to sin
>>>gets to have so much fun.
But tell that to the spouse who has to tell his family he commited adultery.
Deployment.
But,
Tell that to the person who struggles with anger … and is afraid there anger is going to cause their spouse to leave them.
Tell that to the son or daughter … who is afraid mom and dad are going to find out about their sin.
Tell that to the worker who has embezzled for years … and knows if they get caught will spend 10 years in jail.
Tell that to the spouse who has to tell his family he commited adultery.
But tell that to the spouse who has to tell his family he commited adultery.
While the pleasure may last a moment,
Sin exacts a terribly cost of fear and guilt in the long run.
Never mind the guilt before God.
>>> suprress the truth
Romans 1:18 ESV
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.
>>> but lost people are afraid of God
According to this passage, Paul teaches us that a scoffer of Christ suppress’s the truth.
They suppress the reality of God.
And they suppress the guilt that comes with their sin.
And may I add - if you cannot say that only by the blood of Christ I am saved … then you are a scoffer.
You are not a believer … and you have every reason to live in fear and guilt.
But why do people suppress the truth?
What motivation is there to live in denial of the truth?
>>> but lost people are afraid of God
And one answer to that - because sin and the wages of sin exacts a high cost of guilt and fear.
Slavery to sin costs us dearly … and one of those ways is fear.
Don’t think for a minute that it is better to live as a lost person,
who doesn’t have Christ as their personal savior.
Lost people live with a huge weight of guilt and fear.
But as a Christian - We don’t have a relationship of fear.
It is like the text says - “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear”
We as Christians are free from the fear and guilt of sin.
>>>> It is this freedom - that inspired the classic hymn.
Burdens are lifted at Calvary.
Burdens are lifted at calvary
Burdens are lifted at Calvary. (Majesty #488)
Faith Baptist Church
Calvary is a term that refers to Jesus dieing on the cross for our sins.
Consider the second line of this song.
Cast your care on Jesus today Leave your worry and fear (worry and fear) Burdens Are Lifted At Calvary Jesus is very near
Being lost goat is full of fear.
One of the reasons the Gospel gives us a wonderful relationship with Godis that our relationship is no longer of fear and guilt.
However, our relationship is more then just >>>>>> no longer of fear and guilt.
You ought to be afraid to be the lost. Someone who rejects Jesus Christ.
Paul describes us as having one of the closest relationships we have in this world
- the relationship between a father and a child.

b) Our relationship is as adopted children.

“but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
The term “adoption” in the Roman world referred to a legal adoption granting full right of inheritance. We have the full status of being children in the family of God.
The Term “Abba” was an Aramaic word that was used by small children for their fathers. The closest comparison would be our word, “Daddy”.
One scholar said,
“This basic word tells us that God is not a distant ruler in transcendence, but one who his intimately close.” (Schrenk quoted by Morris (Pillar)
So the terms in our text carry the idea of a close relationship, with full standing as children, in the household of God.
But beyond just the terms - Paul tells us - "By whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”.
The idea of cry here is the idea of crying out to your father,
whom you intimately know and trust to care for and protect you.
ILLUSTRATION:
The term here
This past week,
Eli and I went over someone's house who had four or five puppies.
And they were sweet puppies who wanted to
lick his face in
and sniff is his belly
and things like that.
>>>>>And so he would giggle and run about 5 feet.
But if you have spent any time around puppies,
what happens when a 3 1/2-year-old runs giggling from 4-5 puppies?
So at first he starts running and giggling because he's surrounded by these puppies,
but then he realized these puppies are going to push them over
... And he looks up at me a little bit of fear and says, >>>>> daddy, daddy, little more persistent daddy.
He knew who cares for and protects him. His daddy.
So when faced with a fearful situation, what does he do?
[[[[[[[He cries out to his daddy.]]]]]]]]]]
That is what Paul is saying here.
That is what Paul is saying here.
I don't know what's going on in your life.
Frankly I can't even tell you what is going to happen this afternoon in your life for sure.
We can make conjectures… But it's really all in the hand of our father.
When you are surrounded and overwhelmed by life … cry out to your Abba Father!
One of the reasons we should lean in the everlasting arms of our heavenly father – is because we have a wonderful relationship with our dad.
We are adopted children in full standing in the family of God, who can cry out to our father.
As a Christian, we don't have a relationship of fear,
we have a relationship as his beloved children.
Why should you lean on the everlasting arms of your father?
Because we have a wonderful relationship as beloved children.
The second Characteristic: We have is a

2) Confident Relationship - Because the Holy Spirit Assures us of Our Adoption. ()

If you spent any time around people… Then you have been burned by people.
Even as I talk about fathers generally in a positive way, let's be honest - Not every father is a good father.
Even as I talk about fathers generally in a positive way, let's be honest.
Not every father is a good father.
ILLUSTRATION:
Perhaps the sermon is hard for you because your father deeply hurt you.
Maybe it wasn't your father, But a father like figure.
In a fallen world…
Too often our view of the heavenly father is clouded by the failures of the human father figures in our lives.
Not to mention, the bold statement that is made here.
>>> Paul is telling us that we don’t just have any father, but God is our father.
Wow … know that is claim to fame.
God is our daddy.
How do we know, that our heavenly father will always be there for us?
How do we know that we won’t mess that up?
You see, it is so easy in the midst of struggle, doubt, and fear ... To begin to doubt our relationship with God.
Whether it be a doubt of God himself
or the doubt of our worthiness;
>>>>>>>>it is easy for us to question whether our Abba Father really answers our cries.
But , declares -
Romans 8:16 ESV
16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
How do you know that God is your father?
how do you know that God is your father?
Because the spirit declares in your spirit that you are.
Because the spirit declares in your spirit that you are.
CAVEAT:
Now,
be careful because there is a temptation here.
Too many people feel as though they have the spirit, but I know they don't because they don't have Christ.
Too many people feel as though they have the spirit,
but I know they don't because they don't have Christ.
They trust in their good works,
or they deny who Jesus truly is.
But they say - they feel the Spirit’s presence.
Many others, I'm not sure if they have the Spirit.
They say they believe in Christ,
but the fruit doesn't show it.
Remember what says,
Romans 8:13 ESV
13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
Romans 8:5 ESV
5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit.
If your life is not filled with the things of God,
then you might have to ask yourself if I really know Jesus.
If your life is not filled with the things of God, then you might have to ask yourself if I really know Jesus.
So let's be careful, not to assume that I have the spirit because I feel like I do.
On the other hand, I don't want you to doubt whether you have the spirit unnecessarily today.
If you can say,
I admit that I am a sinner
but I trust Jesus dying on the cross to pay for my sins
and I am trying to live for Christ.
Then don't unnecessarily doubt your salvation.
You may just be overwhelmed and need to cry out to your Abba Father!
Yet, if we are truly believers in Christ, and our growing in Christ, then we will have in our spirit a certain assurance that Jesus is mine and that I can call on Abba my father.
Yet, I want us to consider one other group.
A mature Christian
- will not only believe in Christ,
- be growing in Christ,
- but also have a certain confidence - that I can call on Abba my father.
What Paul is saying here, is that you can't have a father … and then not have a father.
You always have a father, and the spirit testifies that in your heart.
So we ought to rest in the everlasting arms of the father … because we have a confident and assured relationship with the Father.
And
The Third Characteristic: We have a

3) Blessed Relationship - Because We are Heirs to A Rich Father. ()

When your father is the creator of the world - can you ever really lack anything?
In his wisdom you may be providentially hindered,
but you can never truly be without.
Afterall - he owns the cows on a thousand hills.
Asaph makes this point in Psalm 50.
Psalm 50:9–11 ESV
9 I will not accept a bull from your house or goats from your folds. 10 For every beast of the forest is mine, the cattle on a thousand hills. 11 I know all the birds of the hills, and all that moves in the field is mine.
Psalm 50:10–11 ESV
10 For every beast of the forest is mine, the cattle on a thousand hills. 11 I know all the birds of the hills, and all that moves in the field is mine.
Ps 50:
And every child … receives an unconditional, undeserved inheritance from God as his children.
Notice how Paul calls -
our reconciliation with God,
our union with Christ,
and glorification with Christ
>>>>our inheritance.
Observe our inheritance in v. 17 -
Romans 8:17 ESV
17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
Romans 8:
Rev
Revelation 21:21 ESV
21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.
According to this passage -

a) We are heirs of God. (likely reconciliation)

In what sense are we heirs of God?
- Paul could be referring to a vast wealth.
Certainly speaks of God possessing vast wealth in the future city of Jerusalem.
Certainly speaks of God possessing vast wealth.
Revelation 21:21 ESV
21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.
Revelation 21:19–21 ESV
19 The foundations of the wall of the city were adorned with every kind of jewel. The first was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth onyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, the twelfth amethyst. 21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.
We have a very rich father.
When the creator who spoke the world into existence is your father… You certainly don't have to worry about wealth.
when the creator who spoke the world into existence is your father… You certainly don't have to worry about wealth.
>>>>>>It is an inheritance that you could never outspend.
Is an inheritance that you could never outspend.
There is no need in your life … that God can’t pay for.
His bank account is always overflowing.
But further,
what greater inheritance could you have then to be the son of the ruler of heaven and earth?
Scripture talks over and over about the sovereignty of God in our everyday lives.
If God rules Heaven and Earth,
then there is nothing in Heaven and Earth that God cannot do.
What do you inherit when you come to believe in Christ?
What do you inherit when you come to believe in Christ?
What do you inherit when you come to believe in Christ?
You become reconciled to God,
adopted as a child of God,
>>>>which means you gain every blessing which could possibly be found through the creator and ruler of the world.
Remember - this is your Abba father.
But Paul also refers to another inheritance.
Certainly,
describes incredible riches in Heaven.
Revelation 21:21 ESV
21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.
So this could carry a

b) We are heirs of Christ. (likely salvation and new life in Christ)

Another incredible blessing that comes from God, is that we get Christ.
What do we gain by being fellow heirs with Christ?
How about salvation?
Romans 6:23 ESV
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
We can be immensely wealthy in this life and enjoy every luxury available.
We can rule a vast domain.
But does any of it come close to gaining eternal life in our Lord Jesus Christ?
I love the way Jim Elliott puts it - one of my heroes.
“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”
There is nothing in this world that can compare to eternal life in Jesus Christ!
I don’t care what rags you wear … We are blessed because because we get Christ.
We are blessed because we get Christ.
b) We have a promise of suffering.
And finally,
c) We have a promise of glory.

c) We are heirs of glorification.

Grammatically, this falls under being heirs of Christ.
But I choose to make it it’s own point because it is so important to remember in the Christian life.
Romans 8:17 ESV
17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
What does it mean we are glorified with him?
Paul describes this in .
i
1 Corinthians 15:51–52 ESV
51 Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.
As Wayne Grudem says -
Glorification is Christ “giving all believers at the same time perfect resurrection bodies like his own”. (Wayne Grudem)
ILLUSTRATION:
I remember going to Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis for Eli to have surgery.
And we were relating how our children have been sick.
He was a mere 6-months old.
And I watched children
in Wheel Chairs.
head braces
Full upper body casts.
Waiting for appointments.
Doesn't your heart ache to see that?
We all know people who suffered,
Perhaps died tragically!
We all have had moments in our life that we have been on her knees in tears.
The all have moments in our life for we have been on her knees in tears.
But one day… Part of our inheritance in Christ is all that will be changed.
What a day that will be!
It will be a day of unspeakable joy.
We have a blessed relationship with God
>>>>because
We are heirs to God.
We are heirs to Christ.
We are heirs of glorification.
Psalm 1:1–2 ESV
1 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; 2 but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.
Lean on the everlasting Arms of our Heavenly Father - Because We have a blessed relationship.
We have a blessed relationship with our Father.
CONCLUSION:
So what kind of relationship do you have with your “Abba Father”?
Is he the one you trust, the one you call on…
OR
is he a distant memory of a father you haven’t talked to in a while.
I can’t guarantee that your life will be perfect.
>>>>>>>>>>In fact this verse tells us we share in the suffering of Christ.
In fact this verse tells us we share in the suffering of Christ.
I can’t even guarantee that you will have a perfect relationship with you Heavenly Father.
>>>> Many times we feel like God is a million miles away from us.
But what I can guarantee is that God is always there, ready to pick up the phone.
If yet we would only cry out to our Abba Father.
ILLUSTRATION:
Even a 3 year old realizes, when he is surrounded and overwhelmed by life… all he has to do is cry out to his daddy.
When is the last time you cried out to your Abba?
Having faith in Christ alone to save you … comes with adoption papers.
The Go
And with that adoption, we gain access to -
a wonderful, confident, blessed relationship with our Abba!
a wonderful, confident, blessed relationship with our Abba!
Lean on the everlasting arms of your heavenly Father.
What I can guarantee
What I can gua
Take time this week to pray to your Abba Father!
Response:
a) What in v. 15 makes our relationship to God wonderful? Why do we struggle with crying out to our Father?
b) How does v. 16 assure us of our adoption? How should a mature Christian approach his faith?
c) What is in an inheritance? What does it mean we as children of God receive an inheritance?
1) Heirs of God.
2) Heirs of Christ.
3) Heirs of Glorification.
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