The Right to Become

The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world.10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.             John 1

The Bible tells us that becoming a child of God is not a right we are born with but a right we are born to. Physical birth is all about human will: the will of a father to engender a child, the will of a mother to bear a child, and the will of the child to be born.

God is telling us that becoming a child of God is like the human birth process and unlike it at the same time.  It is alike in that both bring forth life. They mark the difference between existence and non-existence. They are alike in that the human will is necessary for the process to be successful.  One important way in which they differ is concerning the right to life. From the moment the sperm fertilizes the egg it becomes a living being and has the right to be born as a child of its parents. Becoming a child of God differs in that we have lost the right through rebellion and sin. Like Edmund in the Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, we are traitors. We are actively working for the enemies of God and have given up the right to a familial relationship with our Maker.

Enter Jesus the Son of God. “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.” His offer to pay the deadly penalty in full for our rebellion changes everything. Jesus lived the pure, obedient, faithful life we were meant to live. He took the traitor’s penalty on himself and God declares us guiltless and bestows on us the right to become His children. 

It is necessary for us to receive Him and to believe in Him, but it would be for nothing unless God Himself had succeeded where Adam and all his children had failed. In this Advent season let us consider those things which hinder us from receiving and believing. And let us be grateful for all that God has done for us in His Son – Jesus Christ!

Amen – let it be.

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