God as Father VS God as Master (Galatians 4:1-7)

God as Father VS God as Master (Galatians 4:1-7)

  • Little boy loves dad, knows 1 word & points a lot
  • Perhaps 2 most important things you learn in Bible 1). Who God is 2). Who you are

 

Do you belong to Christ?

Galatians 3:29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.

  • You must be born again (physical vs spiritual)
  • Equivalent – I was born into XN family

 

Are you a spiritual child or a maturing adult?

Galatians 4:1-2 I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father.

Roman Empire

  • Kids – beaten, garbage/dung pile – die, slave, prostitute, gladiator
  • Disabled & girls – desert, river, suffocate
  • Infant mortality – ½ kids died by 5 yrs, less 40% lived to 20
  • Wait 8-9 days to name

= The quality of your life depended upon the character of your father

  • People helped raise you (nanny, teacher, coach, youth pastor)
  • Maturity not age was measured – father decided when you were adult
  • When mature, allowed to make own decisions

= Legalism is immature, it’s going backwards, paint by numbers, music chords

 

Do you see  yourself as a slave or a son?

Galatians 4:3-5 In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world. But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.

American Slavery

  1. Almost entirely racial
  2. Lifetime status as masters property
  3. Children born by a slave also property of the master
  4. People were property passed on in the estate along with livestock
  5. Egypt & Joseph, Babylon & Daniel

1 Timothy 1:9-10 “We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious…for slave traders…and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine.”

Ancient Slavery

  1. Not mainly racial – all races had slaves & were slaves
  2. Not often a lifetime status, most freed by 30 or emancipated
  3. Slaves often educated & trained then freed start business & contract w/master
  4. Slaves were elders & deacons in the church

Phmn 1:16 Paul wants Onesimus received by the church as a brother not a slave

How Become slave?

  1. Sometimes a debt payoff like our bankruptcy repossession
  2. Sometimes sell self into slavery for a better life
  3. Sometimes taken as prisoners of war
  4. Sometimes abandoned infants

= Complicated, diverse, sometimes unjust & sinful

  • Son – ancient world son had legal power & inheritance (male & female)

 

Slave vs Son

Controlling relationship                                    Loving relationship

Powerless                                                        Empowered

Works based lifestyle                                       Grace based lifestyle

Forever out of the family                                  Forever in the family

=Adoption – ancient world w/adults, $ cancelled, legal authority, inheritance (e.g. political

 

Do you relate to God as master or Father?

Galatians 4:6-7 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.

  • Identity – live for, live from

Father

  • Mormons & Muslims – focus on faulty fatherhood
  • Pentecostal and Charismatics – HS
  • Evangelical & Reformed – Jesus
  1. Atheism – I have no Father.
  2. Agnosticism – I may or may not have a Father, but I’ve never met Him, I don’t know who or where He is, and I don’t really care to find out.
  3. Deism – I have a Father but, like my dad who abandoned me when I was little, He lives far away and we don’t have a relationship.
  4. Reformed theology – I have a Father who is distant, controlling, and not very relational
  5. Arminian theology – I have a Father who is passive and lets me make my own decisions and do whatever I want, like my earthly dad who stayed out of my affairs.
  6. Liberal/Progressive – I have a Father who acts more like an enabling older sibling and does not tell me what to do but helps me do whatever I want, even foolish or rebellious.
  7. Feminist theology says that we don’t need a Father since men are dangerous and harmful, we should be spiritually raised by a single parent and worship God as Mother.

OT

  1. Lots about fathers (patriarchal)
  2. Little about God Father – roughly 15X, not to individuals

JESUS

  • #1 name for God – 65X Matt-Luke; 100X John = 165X
  • Abba – no indication this word used before Jesus of God
  • “Our Father” – how relate to God

Jesus = 1. Son of God 2. Spirit-filled

Luke 3:22 a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son;with you I am well pleased.

Luke 4:3,9 “If you are the Son of God” (tested)

CLOSE

  • People become like their view of God
  • People use their relationship with God as the template for all relationships

God as Master vs God as Father

A master uses you                   A father blesses you

You serve them                       They serve you

Motivate you by fear                 Motivate you by love

Beats you down                       Builds you up

No inheritance                        Full inheritance (HS downpayment)


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Mark Driscoll
hello@markdriscoll.org

Pastor Mark Driscoll is a Jesus-following, mission-leading, church-serving, people-loving, Bible-preaching pastor. He’s grateful to be a nobody trying to tell everybody about Somebody. Read More