“But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.” vss. 12-13
John the Gospelwriter seems to be saying here that people are not the children of God unless they have received Jesus, that only after believing in him do they truly receive the power to become children of God. And indeed this is how many have interpreted these verses. But it’s more likely that John has something else in mind! It really is incomprehensible that all people are not included among God’s children, after all, scripture is clear in saying that all people are created in the image of God. We would say they contain God’s DNA–none are excluded. John is saying that trusting Jesus gives people the power to actually live as children of God–another way to understand that is to say that Jesus awakens the Christ that is already in us, that when touched by the Spirit of Jesus, we become what we already are! That means that in this world there are millions of people, awakened folks, who are actually living as children of God. And how are they distinguished? Well, not by their religious preferences, political parties, or net worth! We know them totally by their loving hearts–the old camp song has it right, “They’ll know we are Christians by our love!” They aren’t better than anyone else–but they are the Body of Christ incarnate!
Thought for the Day: How does being awakened change our lives?