all in the family
"See what love the Father has bestowed on us in letting us be called children of God! Yet that is what we are." —1 John 3:1
God's word promises: "To [Jesus'] own He came, yet His own did not accept Him. Any who did accept Him He empowered to become children of God" (Jn 1:11-12). When we recognize Jesus, He empowers us to become children of God and also to recognize other believers as God's children and our brothers and sisters.
"The reason the world does not recognize us is that it never recognized the Son" (1 Jn 3:1). The world calls us everything but what we are. It identifies us by nations, denominations, races, gender, economics, or theologies. First and foremost, however, we Christians are children of God.
"Dearly beloved, we are God's children now" (1 Jn 3:2). "There does not exist among you Jew or Greek, slave or freeman, male or female. All are one in Christ Jesus" (Gal 3:28). "There is no Greek or Jew here, circumcised or uncircumcised, foreigner, Scythian, slave, or freeman. Rather, Christ is everything in all of you" (Col 3:11).
Therefore, we see former enemies as sisters, convicted murderers as brothers, the homeless as family, and fetuses as children. No matter what, first of all, "dearly beloved, we are God's children now" (1 Jn 3:2), this Christmas, and forever.
Prayer: Father, may my country, denomination, race, culture, and personality be secondary to my brotherhood and sisterhood in Your family.
Promise: "The One Who sent me to baptize with water told me, 'When you see the Spirit descend and rest on Someone, it is He Who is to baptize with the Holy Spirit.' " —Jn 1:33
Praise: Going to prison was the best thing that ever happened to Kate, because it was there that she accepted Jesus as Lord.
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape Brotherhood and Sisterhood in the Gospels on audio AV 85-1 or video V-85.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 13, 2006
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