Welcome to Day 1506 of our Wisdom-Trek, and thank you for joining me.
I am Guthrie Chamberlain, Your Guide to Wisdom
A Family of Imagers – Worldview Wednesday
Wisdom – the final frontier to true knowledge. Welcome to Wisdom-Trek where our mission is to create a legacy of wisdom, to seek out discernment and insights, and to boldly grow where few have chosen to grow before.
Hello, my friend, I am Guthrie Chamberlain, your captain on our journey to increase wisdom and create a living legacy. Thank you for joining us today as we explore wisdom on our 2nd millennium of podcasts. Today is Day 1506 of our trek, and it is Worldview Wednesday. Creating a Biblical Worldview is essential to have a proper perspective on today’s current events. To establish a Biblical Worldview, you must have a proper understanding of God and His Word.
This week, on our Worldview Wednesday episode, we will continue our study based on a course I recently completed taught by Dr. Michael Heiser. Our study is titled “Sons and Daughters of God: The Believer’s Identity, Calling, and Destiny.” Throughout this multi-week course, we will demonstrate that, in the Old Testament, “sons of God” and “holy ones” refers to supernatural beings whose Father is God and who work with God to carry out His will and that this divine family was present before humanity.
By fully engaging with biblical texts such as Psalm 82, Psalm 89, and Deuteronomy 32:8–9, our study will show that this divine family functions as a template for God’s human family. God desires of humans, as His imagers, to participate in His council. This study addresses issues such as polytheism, the nature of the (little ‘g’) “gods,” and Yahweh’s uniqueness. This study will apply insights to the New Testament texts and show how the metaphor of being in God’s family informs our sense of identity and mission as believers.
A Family of Imagers
· Segment 28: Believers as Family, Participants – 2
Introduction 1 John 3
1 John 3:1-2 is perhaps the key passage to tying these ideas together, and I’ve alluded to it several times already. John writes, “See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him. Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is.”
Grafted Back into the Family
Now, in one sense, every human being is a child of God. Paul alludes to that in his sermon in Acts 17. God is our common creator. We understand that, but John is talking about something different here, especially post-fall.
Family Means Participation
We have to be grafted back into the family, and the family, of course, includes this idea of participation, being in concert with God’s will, and helping God carry out His will. It’s a different kind of relationship, but I think the kind of things we’ve been talking about here helps us understand John’s language instead of what Paul says in Acts 17 a little bit. Because unless you’re a believer, you’re not going to be able to be working in concert with God—again carrying out His will, participating in His program.
That was the original intent. It wasn’t just to have humans there on earth back in Genesis 1. As soon as God created us, the idea was to be with Him. We were to be united with Him and His blended family. His divine family that already existed, and His earthly family was to be in this place where heaven had come to earth. Heaven intersects with the earth in Eden to overspread even across the planet to be working as one, one unit, one business—whatever metaphor helps here—to be working together toward a common goal.
Jesus Restores Relationships
That’s not possible when people are estranged from God, so Jesus brings us back into this relationship. We are, even in a greater sense, in the initially intended purpose, we are siblings; we are coworkers. John says this is what we are now. Those of us who are believers, but even more so, we will be even transcending that which we experience now.
So we’re in this already/not yet sort of mode that many other things in biblical theology are when it comes to the believer. We get a foretaste of what things were intended to be and, ultimately, what they will be. Of course, in the ultimate sense, we are united to Christ. We will be living with Him back in a kingdom in a new earth, a new Eden, a global Eden. Everything will come full circle. So again, the Old Testament context helps us to grasp this a little bit.
Authority to Be Children of God
John also wrote in his Gospel in John 1:12, “But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.” We have the authority to take this title. It’s more than, “Oh, I just exist. I’m a human being. God made me. So, therefore, I’m a child of God.” No, this is something different. This is being brought back into the family to accomplish the original mandate and work with Jesus side by side, as it were, to be His spiritual sibling, His co-laborer sibling, not just the fact that we exist. So this language, to be correctly understood, needs to be read in the context of Genesis 1. God’s original intention in creating human imagers to align with His non-human imagers in this place where heaven met earth.
Addressing Rebellion at Babel
In 2 Peter 1:4, Peter comments that believers share His divine nature, “And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.” We’re already in that category, according to Peter. But again, we’re progressively being transformed into the image of His Son, as Paul says. We’re becoming more like the ultimate imager, and ultimately, that process will reach its climax in glorification. In John 11:51-52, Caiaphas’s prophecy, his sort of accidental prophecy, was about Jesus, “He did not say this on his own; as high priest at that time, he was led to prophesy that Jesus would die for the entire nation. And not only for that nation, but to bring together and unite all the children of God scattered around the world.”
Now, this is important, especially if you’re thinking like a Jew. This language would force you to go back to your Old Testament and do some thinking. If you were a Jew who had accepted Christ as the Messiah and as the savior, His work was not just for the nation of Israel only, but it was so that everyone, all who believe, regardless of where they are at, scattered among the nations, would be gathered into one as one family of the children of God.
This is sort of a rolling back not only of the Eden problem, the fall, the estrangement from God in general, but it’s also a rolling back of what had resulted because of the rebellion at Babel when the nations are divided and allotted to lesser sons of God. This Son of God, the “unique” Son of God, the monogenēs Son of God, because He became incarnate and died on the cross, part of that mission was to erase these distinctions, to bring the nations back into the fold. Jesus is the seed that Paul talked about, referencing Genesis 12, that through the seed of Abraham, all of the nations would be blessed.
All these ideas are important; they are threads or part of a matrix of ideas with deep roots in the Old Testament. In Romans 8:16-17, we read, “For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.”
status isn’t just that we believe, and now we’re going to have eternal life. That’s true, but this inheritance language is essential. What are we inheriting? We’re inheriting what God originally intended for us: a global Eden, new earth. Read in the context of the Old Testament. This is just another example of where God looks at believers differently. We had been estranged because of rebellion, because of the fall. He looks at us now as family members. Everything has come full circle once more.
The passages that we reviewed today are the clear passages. There are a few other things that we read in the New Testament that make subtle connections between Jesus, believers, the supernatural family of God, this thing we’ve called the “divine council” within Psalm 82, and the rule of Eden, again, the original plan. We want to look at a few of the less apparent passages next week on our Worldview Wednesday episode.
That will finish our study for this week’s Worldview Wednesday. Next week we will cover part 2 of “Believers as Family, Participants.” Tomorrow we will enjoy our 3-minute humor nugget that will provide you with a bit of cheer and help you to lighten up and live a rich and satisfying life. So encourage your friends and family to join us and then come along with us tomorrow for another day of Wisdom-Trek, Creating a Legacy.
If you would like to listen to any of our past 1505 treks or read the Wisdom Journal, they are available at Wisdom-Trek.com. I encourage you to subscribe to Wisdom-Trek on your favorite podcast player so that each day’s trek will be downloaded automatically.
Thank you so much for allowing me to be your guide, mentor, and, most of all, your friend as I serve you through the Wisdom-Trek podcast and journal.
As we take this trek together, let us always:
- Live Abundantly (Fully)
- Love Unconditionally
- Listen Intentionally
- Learn Continuously
- Lend to others Generously
- Lead with Integrity
- Leave a Living Legacy Each Day
I am Guthrie Chamberlain reminding you to Keep Moving Forward, Enjoy Your Journey, and Create a Great Day Everyday! See you tomorrow!
 Heiser, M. S. (2019). Sons and Daughters of God: The Believer’s Identity, Calling, and Destiny. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.