“But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who 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)
A Solid Fact
I have heard people who when involved in arguments brag over their sonship. They say things like, ‘do you know who I am?’, ‘do you know who my father is?’. They do this because they understand that they are rightfully and legally sons of whoever their father is. They know this fact, and whether the person with whom they have this argument knows it or not, it changes nothing to them. Even if they don’t win in the argument, it doesn’t change the fact that they are the sons of their father.
Just as sonship is a solid fact biologically, sonship is a solid fact in the spirit. If biologically I have a son, there will be evidence from the DNA tests, and nothing anyone says or does can change the fact that this son is mine and that I am his father. Even if this son travels to another country, geographical circumstances do not affect the quality of the fact of his sonship in me. This is the reason a lot of foster children make efforts to find their biological parents:
It is a solid fact too profound for them to ignore.
The Right to Sonship in God
“But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God”. The King James Version uses the word power. That is, to as many as received Him, He gave the power to become the sons—children—of God. This is profound, and it’s a blessed Truth! It tells us that something happens when a person receives Christ.
Christ possesses Sonship in God. It is His, legally and rightfully. The Bible tells us that He is the only begotten Son of God.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
And sonship depicts heirship. Meaning, all that God is and all that God has is Christ’s. Christ has this right. He has this privilege, It is all His.
“For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.” (Colossians 1:16)
There is something Christ has that no other being in heaven has. And this is the right to Sonship in God. The legal and rightful access to the position of Son of God. It is an authority—a power—which Christ possesses. The angels, 24 elders, 4 beasts, and other celestial beings do not possess this power.
Now, this is what our foundation scripture (John 1:12, 13) refers to when it says Christ gives to as many as receive Him the right—the power—to become children of God. Hallelujah!
When a person receives/accepts the Gospel of Christ with joy and gladness, thus receiving Christ, a transaction occurs. Christ takes this power and authority which He possesses, that is, the right to Sonship in God, and He gives it to the person who just received Him. He gives this person the legal and rightful access to the position of son or daughter of God. It is a power—an authority—which Christ gives to this person. Christ shares His place as a Son of God with this person. This person now becomes a fellow heir of God with Christ. (Romans 8:16, 17).
And so if you have received Christ, there is good news! The right to sonship in God has been bestowed upon you—it has been given to you. And if you have not received the Gospel of Christ, well, this is the Gospel. Receive Christ now and receive the right to become a child of God.
Sonship is Tangible
Now we must note something that is of great importance: the Scripture says that Christ gives to the one who receives Him the right to become a child of God. This Scripture substantiates sonship in God. It presents it as something that has to be taken and possessed. A right—a power or authority—which is given. And if this is so, then it means that it is possible that the person to whom this right, access, power, or authority is given can be cheated off it. It also is possible that this person can be ignorant of this access and so not live in the experience of it. Sonship is something a person has. It is something a person possesses.
Sonship in God is so real and substantial—it is tangible.
When you received the Gospel of Christ into your heart, Christ handed over to you the tangible right to sonship in God. The Bible tells us this, and so it is a fact. This means that it is real and certain. Nothing we do can change the Truth that Christ gives to as many as receive Him the right to sonship in God. But usually, when something is handed over to you, you have to receive it before you can possess it.
For instance, if I hand over a car key to every new friend I make, it means that every new friend of mine has the potential right to become a car owner. Now if, peradventure, I meet this new friend and hand over to him a key, but he refuses to take the key because he doubts the possibility of my declaration, he will not possess a car. Yet, the fact that I give cars to every new friend will not change just because one new friend refused to receive it.
This is what happens with so many people who receive the Gospel. They do not possess the right to sonship which has been given to them.
As we deduced earlier, it is a power—an authority—which Christ possesses that He gives to us. We must understand that this right to sonship is something of substance which can and should be taken and possessed.
That the right to sonship was given does not mean it is automatically possessed. When something is given, it must be received to be possessed.
You may say but the Scripture says “as many as received Him”. Yes, it does. But that means as many as received the Gospel of Christ into their hearts. It is possible for a person to receive the Gospel of Christ—which is Christ Himself—and not possess the access/power/authority/right to sonship that is given. Such a person receives Christ, but that which is given in the transaction does not take root in his heart due to unbelief, doubt, distractions, an inclination to the things of the world, lack of understanding, or a lack of personal revelation. (See Matthew 13:18-23)
So how do I possess the right to sonship in God?
You possess the right to sonship in God by knowing. This knowing is not natural. It is by revelation. It is revelation-knowledge. The Holy Spirit imparts a Truth into your spirit—He makes this truth real to you. It becomes your own. Then He begins to expand it in the realm of your mind. So you have two things. You have revelation, and you have knowledge—understanding. This is the kind of knowing we refer to, and it is how you possess your right to sonship. This is why Christ has given to the Church teachers of the Word. (Ephesians 4:11-13).
The reality of your right to sonship is progressive. You only live in the experience of that which you know [by revelation]. So as you progress in knowledge, your experience of the reality of your sonship in God deepens and broadens: until you attain the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
There are different facts contained in your access to sonship. We shall discuss them as the days progress. For now, know this:
All that Christ is and has is rightfully yours to be and have as a child of God