v 5. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus
Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.
I have been chosen by God and adopted as his child.
Not all parents get pleasure through their children; so here is an astounding fact – you have not merely
been accepted as a child in God’s family, your presence in the family gives God great pleasure!
There may be moments when you feel you have let God down – your thoughts, your behaviour, your
words have all been – shall we say – disgraceful. Your lifestyle has not measured up to the standards
which you feel are pleasing to God. You may even feel yourself slipping down a hole that takes you
away from God. The reality remains that God adopted you, it was not you who adopted God and his way
of life. God wanted you as his child and will never go back on his promise to hold you in the family.
There have occasionally been people who have thought that this confident assurance of God’s grace
and kindness gives a Christian some kind of freedom to live a careless or even sinful life. St Paul knocks
that idea on the head in Romans 6 ‘Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us
more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue
to live in it? ‘
The freedom we enjoy as children of God is freedom from the power of sin, and freedom through the
Holy Spirit to live the quality of life God intends for us.