Holy Trinity Sunday
The grace of God the Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God the Father, and the fellowship of God the Holy Spirit be with you all! Amen. In the name of our Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit dear friends in Christ: Does this happen in your home? Or did this happen at some time in your home? One of our children will do something odd or strange or wrong and either my wife will say it to me or I’ll say it to my wife, “Do you know what YOUR child did today?” “I can’t believe what YOUR child just did.” “You better talk to YOUR child.” Have you ever spoken those words or heard those words? It’s almost as if there are times when we try to separate ourselves from our children, because, after all, MY child would never do such a thing! I can kind of see it in other aspects too. At times my children can be incredibly stubborn and I jokingly tell my wife, “That must come from the Myers side of the family, definitely not the Nitz side. J Does that ever happen in your home?
Now, I’m a sinful human parent and I can even recognize the bad and wrong things that my children do and it can be at times embarrassing- that’s MY child!?! Maybe there can even be times when I’d like to pretend that the child isn’t even mine, maybe when you’re in public somewhere and your child begins to cry and throw fit right in front of people, are there times when you want to at least pretend that this child isn’t mine? And we’re sinful humans. What would it be like to be a perfect parent with sinful children? How easy would it be to admit that these sinful children are yours? God is totally perfect and totally holy and yet, what is amazing, is the incredible way that God pictures our relationship to Him in these verses.
Let’s first consider for a bit who God is. Who is your God? God is eternal. He views everything in a never changing present. God is all present. God penetrates everything everywhere. God is at the same time right here and yet at the same time God is across the globe in China, if you go to the moon, God is also there. God is also all-knowing. God knows all things completely and perfectly, God not only knows everything that has happened or will happen but he knows everything that could happen. God is also all-powerful. He has unlimited power and can do whatever he pleases. He has unbounded strength and can do more than we could imagine. God sustains all things. The fact that our earth remains in orbit and doesn’t jettison into oblivion is because God is keeping it in orbit around the sun.
In fact, God is so big, so grand, so magnificent, so far beyond our comprehension that we’ve actually had to make up words to describe Him. We call God the Triune God or the Trinity. The fact that God is triune means that He is one God and yet three persons in that one God. The Father is God, the Son is God, the Holy Spirit is God, yet they aren’t three Gods, they are one God. The Father is not the Son, the Son is not the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit is not the Father. He is Triune. Literally, the three-one. How? It goes beyond our minds, beyond our comprehension, beyond our imagination. In other words, God is WAY bigger than you and I.
So, if God is so huge and awesome and incredible, it would make sense that we would always honor God, always listen to Him, always be ready to bow in amazement before Him, if God is all-powerful and powerfully sustains all things it would make sense that we would always trust His control and rule over this earth, if God is all-knowing and all wise, it would make sense that we would always trust His wisdom and His plans for our lives, right?
But is that what happens? Does God get every part of our trust? Unfortunately, we often fail to stand in amazement of Him, fail fully trust Him, fail to love Him. And that means that on our end, the very thought of who God is ought to frighten and terrify us. It ought to make us cower in fear of Him. What right do you and I have to stand before such an awesome God when we’ve failed to honor and love Him? And this also means that from God’s end, He ought to disown us. What is possibly the worst thing or at least one of the worst things that a parent could do to their child? Isn’t it to disown their child? To say, “You’re not my child, I don’t want you, I disassociate myself from you.” But shouldn’t God say that about each of us? Shouldn’t He say to us in anger, “You’re not MY child, I don’t know you, you’re not associated with me, I disown you.” God is holy and perfect, and us? We’re full of sin! We have no right to be God’s children.
But notice what God says to you in this text. He doesn’t come to us with anger like we deserve. He doesn’t cause us to be afraid of Him. He doesn’t disown us. He does just the opposite! “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but your received the Spirit of sonship!” It’s as if God is saying to each of us, “I don’t want you to be afraid of me, I don’t want you to cower in fear before me as you deserve. I want to deal with you like a father and a child.” And it goes even further, “And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” “Ab” is the Aramaic word for Father, “Abba” was an extension of that term, it was something that even little children would say to their father, “Abba, Abba.” In other words, we can come before God like He’s our dear Father and call Him, “Dad, father, daddy.”
Think about that, before this almighty, all-powerful, all-knowing, all-present, all-encompassing God, who’s magnificence is totally beyond our comprehension, who’s transcendence is beyond our imagination, we can come before Him and call Him not, “Oh Powerful One, O Incredible One, O Almighty One,” but rather, “Oh Father, Oh Dad.” Is that not incredible love and grace?!
But why? Why are we part of God’s family? Why can we approach God as our dear Father? We can approach God the Father because of the 2nd person of our Triune God, God the Son. Jesus who is God for all eternity, in time took on our human flesh, became our brother fully and completely. He came to live as our perfect brother keeping all of God’s commands 100% of the time. And how should he feel about us? His wayward brothers and sisters? Shouldn’t He disown us, have nothing to do with us? Not only did He NOT disown us, but actually came to live as our substitute and die as our substitute. He came to shed His blood on a cross to save our souls. All so that now, God can look at you and me and say, “You’re mine! You’re my son! You’re my daughter! You’re part of MY family!” What grace!
And not only that, but notice what else God calls us, not only are we God’s children, but, “Heirs- heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ.” Co-heirs with Christ!?! Think about God as our Dad and He’s passing out the inheritance. Here’s your inheritance, here’s your inheritance, here’s your inheritance, Jesus, here’s your inheritance, etc. Can you imagine? He puts us on the same level as His Son Christ Jesus Himself and says that we get what God the Son gets: THE inheritance, glory in eternal life forever! That’s amazing!
And there’s NO WAY we would ever believe any of this if it wasn’t for the 3rd person of the Triune God: the Holy Spirit. We’re told that the “Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” God the Holy Spirit used the Gospel to create faith in your heart, to convince you that Jesus’ payment for sins applies to you, that your sins are forgiven, if it wasn’t for the Holy Spirit, you’d never believe any of it. Thank the LORD for the work of the Triune God!
And does this mean that everything is going to go great for us? We are children of the God of all, right? Well, how did life on this earth God for God the Son? Yep, He suffered, was crucified, and died. But how did God use it? How did it turn out in the end? He rose, He ascended and now He sits in glory ruling all things for the good of God’s people. That’s God’s promise to you: He will use even our sufferings to keep us focused on Him, His grace, His love, His mercy, all in order to lead us to THE inheritance in eternal life with Him forever.
It is our distinct privilege in life to live as God’s beloved children. To live in this world in such a way that people see us as being different, unique, so loved by our Triune God that we display that peace, that joy, that love in our day to day lives. Parents have a profound influence on their children either positively or negatively. Parents who not only love their children but also show that they love their children by their actions have a huge impact on their children. The opposite is also true in a hugely profound way. Children whose parents love them and show it generally have way more joy, peace, security, contentment, they know who they are, confidence, etc. While the opposite is also true.
So, when people see you, do they know whose child you are? Can they tell that you are a child of God? Can they see in your life and in your actions that God is your Father who loves you more than you will ever know and that He doesn’t only tell you He loves you, His love for you led Him to sacrifice His own Son to win you the forgiveness of sins and eternal life and He sent His Spirit into your heart to convince of His love for you and assure you that you ARE His child? Do people see that?
Look at the reality! God isn’t lying when He tells you that YOU are His child, you not only inherit heaven, you are a co-heir with Christ, what more do you need? What more reason do you need to live life free from fear, anxiety, worry, anxiousness, and insecurity? What more do you need to live life with joy, peace, contentment and security? You are the Triune God’s child, that’s whose child you are. Amen.