Baptist Distinctives: God Is Our Father

Photo by Liane Metzler on Unsplash

When our Lord Jesus taught us to pray, He told us to pray to the Father. Not to Him, nor to the Holy Spirit, but to the Father.

Matthew 6:9-13 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

Many Have A Poor View Of God As Father
Because Of Sin And Disobedience

God is the Creator of the Family. It was God Who made Adam and Eve, and ordered that they “be fruitful, multiply, and replenish the earth” (Genesis 1:28). Man was the lead the family, with the wife supporting his leadership. The first family collapsed because Adam did not do as he was commanded, and sin entered the world.

When God chose to save Israel, as King and Father He enacted a series of moral laws that His people were to follow. In the moral law we call The Ten Commandments the fifth commandment was:

Exodus 20:12 Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

Word Study: The word translated Honor is the Hebrew kâbad, {pronounced kaw-bad’}, which means to bring honor to, to enrich or bring glory to. Parents were to honor God, and treat their children as valuable and precious. Children learn their concepts of “father” and “mother” from their parents.

Sadly, many children today grow up without an understanding of what the word “father” means.

Many kids grow up in single parent homes where absent fathers are the standard. That is so very sad. Pastor Francis Chan wrote in his spot on book Crazy Love:

“The concept of being wanted by a father was foreign to me. Growing up, I felt unwanted by my dad. My mother died giving birth to me, so maybe he saw me as the cause of her death; I’m not sure.

I never carried on a meaningful conversation with my dad. In fact, the only affection I remember came when I was nine years old: He put his arm around me for about 30 seconds while we were on our way to my stepmother’s funeral. Besides that, the only other physical touch I experienced were the beatings I received when I disobeyed or bothered him.

My goal in our relationship was not to annoy my father. I would walk around the house trying not to upset him.

He died when I was 12. I cried but also felt relief.

The impact of this relationship affected me for years, and I think a lot of those emotions transferred to my relationship with God. For example, I tried hard not to annoy God with my sin or upset Him with my little problems. I had no aspiration of being wanted by God; I was just happy not being hated or hurt by Him.”

Being raised with NO view of a father, or a LOW view of a father, will impact how you view TheFather”

Baptists Believe God As Our Father Is Loving, Gracious, Merciful, And Kind – As Well As KING

The Southern Baptist Faith and Message (2000) states:

“God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. He is all powerful, all knowing, all loving, and all wise. God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. He is fatherly in His attitude toward all men.”

God desires to be Father to all who will
come to Him through Christ.

The Bible tells us that God the Father is the Head of the Family of God, and the Leader within the Trinity of God. Though the Scripture says that

Galatians 3:26 we are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus

And that we are ADOPTED into God’s Family by the Holy Spirit of God:

Romans 8:15 … ye have received the SPIRIT OF ADOPTION, whereby we cry, Abba, Father

Romans 9:24-26 … Even us, whom {God} hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles? 25 As he saith also in {Hosea}, I will call them my people, which were not my people; and her beloved, which was not beloved. 26 And it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people; there shall they be called the children of the living God.

Even within the Trinity, God the Father is the Leader. God the Father sent His Son to be our Lord and Savior (John 3:16), and God the Father sends the Holy Spirit to those who love Jesus (John 14:16).

The ancient Jews somewhat knew God as Father. When God called Moses to go to Pharaoh and demand Israel’s release, God told Moses:

Exodus 4:22-23 … thou {O Moses} shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord, Israel is my son, even my firstborn: 23 And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn.

Israel was God’s Child, and God Israel’s Father. When God led Israel out of bondage, Moses tells Israel:

Deuteronomy 1:31 … in the wilderness, where thou hast seen how that the Lord thy God bare thee, as a man doth bear his son, in all the way that ye went, until ye came into this place.

There are a few places in the Old Testament where God is clearly called “Father” to Israel. In Jeremiah 31:9 God says, for I am a Father to Israel, and in Isaiah 64:8 “But now, O LORD, Thou art our Father …. In Isaiah 63:16 the Prophet says, Doubtless Thou art our Father … Thou, O LORD, art our Father, our Redeemer; Thy name is from everlasting. In Malachi 2:10 we read, Have we not all one Father? Hath not one God created us?.

Jesus Portrayed God As “Father” To Both Groups
(like Israel) As Well As To Individuals

Though God is referred to as “Father” in the Old Testament and under the Old Covenant, in the New Testament our Lord Jesus expands the Fatherhood of God. Among Israel God was “Father” only to the nation. Jesus defined the Fatherhood of God as personal.

John 5:18 Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill {Jesus}, because {Jesus} not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was His Father, making himself equal with God.

Jesus portrayed God as Father over not just a group, but over individual believers. Jonathan T. Pennington in Outreach Magazine notes:

“… understanding God as Father and addressing him in this way was more frequent and characteristic of Jesus and Christianity from its earliest days.

The Gospels refer to God as Father (patēr) over 170 times, most of them coming from the Gospel of John (109x). Second to John is Matthew, which refers to God as Father 44 times, much more frequently than the other Synoptics (Mark 4x; Luke 17x). This shows that for the first and fourth Gospels (which prove to be the most influential on the church), God as Father is an important theme. God’s fatherhood becomes a foundational idea for Christianity …”

Turn to Matthew Chapter 23: Our Lord Jesus told us that the Fatherhood of God and the Family of God are to supersede all other relationships that you might have. God is our Perfect Father.

Matthew 23:8-10 But be not ye called Rabbi {ῥαββί rhabbí, [pronounced hrab-bee’], “Master”}: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. 9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. 10 Neither be ye called masters {καθηγητής kathēgētḗs, [pronounced kath-ayg-ay-tace’], “Guides, Directors”}: for one is your Master, even Christ.

Jesus demanded that the Family of God and the Christian’s relationship in that family be greater than that of our earthly families. He said:

Luke 14:26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.

Our earthly relationships are to pale in comparison to our Heavenly relationships. If I am to “love the Lord my God with all my heart, and with all my soul, and with all my might” (Deuteronomy 6:5; Matthew 22:37), then my God and not my family are to take the preeminence in my life. However, I have found that,

If I love God my Father, God my Elder Brother, and God the Spirit more than those around me, my love for those around me will increase.

I forgive and care for my enemies because I love God most. I love and care for my wife because I love God most. I love and care for my children and grandchildren because I love God most. It is God Who has given these great gifts to me, and so I care for my other relationships – though God remain number ONE in my life. A high view of God as Father will give you a high view of all else that goes on around you.

The Fatherhood Of God Brings Us Into Union
With The Triune Godhead

The Bible is clear that God the Father loves God the Son. When Jesus prayed, He prayed to the Father.

Matthew 11:25-30 Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. 26 Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight. 27 All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. 28 Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

The Lord Jesus made it clear that the Father loves the Son, and shows the Son all that He does” (John 5:20). The Father, Son, and Spirit are eternally and equally bound together in love one toward another. To love Jesus is to be loved of the Father. All power

Since the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are bound together in an eternal triad of love, when we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, we are drawn into this chain of perfect love. Jesus said “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth” (Matthew 28:19). Jesus did not take power from the Father, but loves the Father, the Head of the Trinity. The Father loves the Son with an infinite love, and has given all power to His Son. This is why Jesus said:

John 14:21-24 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. 22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world? 23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. 24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.

When we love Jesus, we are loved of the Father. It is through Jesus that we enter into the Family of God. Because God the Father loves His creation – though we have fallen – He sent Jesus Christ to bring us into union with Him. Once saved by faith in Christ, we are to love one another as we have been loved. The Apostle wrote:

1 John 4:7-11 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. 8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. 9 In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. 10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

God is a Father Who loves us. God is a Father Who we can talk to. He is a Father Who meets our every need. Jesus said:

Matthew 6:26-33 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? 27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? 28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: 29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? 31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

It is the Father we pray to in the Son’s Name and in the power of God the Holy Spirit. It is the Father Who supplies our needs. He supplies our need for salvation through Christ Jesus and the Holy Spirit. He supplies our daily needs as a good Father will do. God marks the Christian by sending the Blessed Holy Spirit to inhabit us after salvation. Praise Him, “God {the Father} sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit Who calls out ‘Abba, Father’”.

God is a Father we can trust to be there. But if you would know God as Father, you must come to Him through faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: No one comes to the Father but by Me” (John 14:6). It is Jesus Whom the Father sent (John 3:16). It is Jesus Who died on Calvary, making payment for our sins. It is Jesus to Whom all power has been given. Do you know Him? Do you know Jesus as Lord and Savior? Have you put your soul into His hands? If not, today is a great day to do so. “For whosoever believes on the Name of the Lord shall be saved” (Acts 2:21; Romans 10:13). May God touch your hearts with His Word. Amen and Amen.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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