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The sons of God

"Now are we the sons of God..." -John

The term "sons of God" is a widely misunderstood phrase among Christians. Many Christians believe that once you believe the Gospel and repent, you become literal sons of God. But according to the context of scripture, this is not a proper interpretation of the phrase, nor does it properly relay how we are sons of God.

In the Old Testament, when the phrase "sons of God" is used, it is always in reference to angelic [spiritual] beings {Genesis 6:2-4 / Job 1:6 • 2:1 • 38:7}. It is never used in reference to a natural flesh and blood man, born of a natural mother and natural father. Said individuals are actually referred to as either sons of men (Referenced 21 times), son of man (referenced 108 times), or daughters of men (Referenced twice). So with the clear distinction between the natural and the spiritual, how are we now sons of God? I believe that pointing out, and understanding what/who "sons of God" really are is paramount in understanding how we are sons of God.

Jesus stated in his parable that when we die we become like the Angels! This is a statement that is confirmed by both John and Paul. When Paul and John refer to us as sons of God, it is purely in a prophetic manner. Just as Abraham was called the father of many nations when he had no children. We can better see this by looking at a few scriptures:

"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." -John 1:12-13

Notice that John states that those who believe on Christ were given the power to "BECOME" the sons of God. He did not say that they were given the power to "Be" sons of God, but rather to "become" (future tense). Paul shows us the time when we actually become sons of God, when we are changed! He states, "So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, WE SHALL ALSO bear the image of the heavenly. -1 Corinthians 15:42-49 And he drives the point even more in stating, "Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

-1 Corinthians 15:50-53

Paul declares that such a transformation is what the entire creation is waiting for; when we are made sons of God, and become like the angels. "For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for THE MANIFESTATION of the sons of God. For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it."

-Romans 8:18-25

The creature is awaiting for the manifestation of the sons of God. We are awaiting to be made like Him! Spiritual beings. Waiting to be changed. Awaiting the redemption of our bodies. Waiting to be transformed into sons of God!!! This is why Paul said that we "hope" for it, but that which is seen is not hoped for! If we were sons of God now, physically, then what is the creation waiting for? But we look forward to being made that which we are called prophetically now. Furthermore, Paul says, "For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

-Romans 8:29-30

John confirms this when he states in 1Jn 3:1-3 "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure." John says that now we are the sons of God, *BUT IT DOTH NOT YET APPEAR WHAT WE SHALL BE*. It is not yet revealed. We have not yet been changed. As shown earlier, Paul describes this mystery in 1 Corinthians 15 when he teaches about the natural and the spiritual. He describes how that which you sow is not quickened except it dies. He says that it is planted a natural body, and it is raised a spiritual body. It is planted a son of man, but it is raised a son of God.

So when we are called the sons of God, it does not merely mean that we are believers in Christ, or it does not merely refer to being saved. It is a declaration that we will be transformed in the day of redemption into the glorious liberty of the sons of God. Having our bodies changed from a natural body to a spiritual body, from corruption to incorruptible. This is why the scriptures teaches that we are sealed by the Holy Spirit until the day of redemption {Ephesians 4:30.} It is the proof of our future transformation.

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