Many claim that all people are “children of God,” but the Bible reveals quite a different truth. We are all His creations and under His authority and lordship, and all will be judged by Him, but the right to be a child of God and call Him “Abba Father” is something that only born-again Christians have (John 1:12–13).When we are born again (John 3:1–8), we are adopted into the family of God, redeemed from the curse of sin, and made heirs of God (Romans 8:17; Galatians 4:7). Part of that new relationship is that God now deals with us differently, as family.
It is life-changing to understand what it means to be able to call the one true God our “Father” and what it means to be joint-heirs with Christ. Because of our relationship with our Abba, Father, He no longer deals with us as enemies; instead, we can approach Him with “boldness” (Hebrews 10:19) and in “full assurance of faith” (Hebrews 10:22). The Holy Spirit “testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ” (Romans 8:16–17).
Becoming a child of God is the highest and most humbling of honors. Because of it we have a new relationship with God and a new standing before Him. Instead of running from God and trying to hide our sin like Adam and Eve did, we run to Him, calling, “Abba, Father!” and finding forgiveness in Christ. Being an adopted child of God is the source of our hope, the security of our future, and the motivation to “live a life worthy of the calling you have received” (Ephesians 4:1). Being children of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords calls us to a higher standard, a different way of life, and, in the future, “an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade” (1 Peter 1:4).
When Jesus taught His disciples to pray, He began with the words Our Father. There is much truth in those two words alone. The holy and righteous God, who created and sustains all things, who is all-powerful, all-knowing, and ever-present, not only allows us but encourages us to call Him “Father.” What a privilege is ours. What amazing grace that God would love us so, that Jesus would sacrifice Himself for us, and that the Holy Spirit would indwell us and prompt our intimate cry of “Abba, Father!”