Back in the days, while I was still an undergraduate, I worked for my father during the Holidays. He was a lawyer so I had to do a lot of PA work so it got to a point where I had to represent him at different functions since I was basically his only staff member. I don’t know if I should even be called staff, after all he wasn’t paying me shingbai.
I don’t know if it was my size or my face or my knowledge of his work but wherever I went to represent him, people always thought I was a lawyer and a big decision maker in my fathers “big” chambers so they accorded me serious respect and honour. In fact, whenever I insisted on any matter, they would go behind me, call my father and ask him to beg me to reconsider. Now,this is not a charge and bail something. I’m talking big companies, royalties and powerful people cos my father was into land law, contracts and agreements and other civil cases so I was getting respect from people I would normally prostrate for.
All the story is just to paint a picture of what sonship is ’cause thats what my assignment is today Sonship in the Kingdom.
I will not spend time discussing the fundamental aspects of sonship and kingdom, quoting all the scriptures where son of God appears so as not to make this write up too long. I will go straight to the misconceptions we Christians have on the concept of sonship.
The first is, “not every child of God is a son of God”. I used to think that immediately you accept Christ, you are a son of God but I stumbled on Gal 4:1-7 and I began to understand that I was yet a child of God, joint heir with Christ, heaven bound, but not yet a son.
African traditions align with this concept of sonship where the first available son bears the seal of his father and wherever he is, it is considered that the father is and whatever he says is considered the words of his father. The Kingdom of God however, conforms to this practice too though not gender specific i.e. even females can attain sonship.
Like the African traditions, not everybody in the family of Christ is a son even though everybody can be. Being a child is a gift, being a son takes growth…deliberate growth. We must strive to move from being a child to being a son. This leads us to he second issue…
Attaining Sonship is a decision.
This is because it is not an easy process. Being a child of God is a comfortable zone but being a son is a prestigious position attained over time, fellowship with the spirit, experiential knowledge of God and willingness to follow God blindly. Citing Rev Peter Brights sermon on “The Lord is My Shepherd “The Lord is My Shepherd”, that’s exactly how sons are made.
Let me rap this up by bringing the ultimate son, the first begotten, into the picture.
Jesus is God. He was God right from birth but he too had to attain sonship. This is because sonship as I earlier said is not gender oriented. So even though he was a male version of the word of God made flesh, he was yet to attain sonship till his baptism at Jordan.
Even Jesus had to put in the work. He spent about 3 days after the passover celebration researching the scriptures while his parents where on their way home. I wonder how a 12 year old boy intended to travel back home alone.
For about 30 years Jesus lived right with God under his parents and when he had grown in wisdom and in stature and in favour with God and men (Luke 2:52), he presented himself to be baptized after which he went into fasting to commence his ministry.
Notice that the two times God acknowledged the sonship of Jesus were the two times he made the most significant decisions as regards his relationship with his father (Luke 3:21-22 and Matt 17:1-9). The first time was when he accepted his mandate to represent his father on earth. The second time was when he was conferred with the old covenant so he could terminate it and bring in the new. So if Jesus had to strive for sonship, why should we be comfortable as children feeding on milk.
The question then is, “When do I know i have attained sonship?”. The truth is you may not hear a voice like Jesus did but there are certain thresholds you will cross that will indicate sonship. For me, the ultimate evidence is when you yield your life to God totally. It’s not a cliché, it’s not the sunday-sunday “I give myself away” process some Christians go through. it is the total yielding of your life to the service of the Kingdom. The jobs you take, the friends you keep, the person you marry, the words you speak, the life you live must radiate your alignment with the Kingdom. When you consider these things, it may make that decision though but trust me, its definitely worth it. Because as a son, you carry the authority of your father and in the words of Dunsin Oyekan “The word of God is as powerful in your mouth as it is powerful in God’s mouth”.
May we strive for sonship in God’s Kingdom henceforth in Jesus name.
© bigDan McDon