but you ain’t his children
“They answered Him, “Abraham is our father.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would be doing the works Abraham did, but now you seek to kill Me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. This is not what Abraham did.” John 8:39-40 (ESV)
Today I make this declaration to you. Kevin and Karen Hughes are my children and I love them both dearly and equally BUT I’m not so sure that makes them a Freedom Fighter contributor. Now don’t get me wrong, YHVH can do what He chooses with them and give them the ability to surpass me in the field of writing BUT just because they are my kids doesn’t mean you’re gonna see the same style or flare from them that you do from me. Now maybe down the line of time someone will approach them and say “Aren’t you Chris Hughes’ child?” and with their reply of “yes” it is my hope that it is because they are a light on a nightstand that is being seen first!
However, the Jews of Jesus’ time weren’t exactly shining the same light that Abraham did. In the 8th chapter of John’s Gospel we find a dialogue happening between Jesus and the Pharisees about them being in the lineage of Abraham. They thought because they were in physical descent with Abraham that surely they received his spiritual succession. And while they proudly boasted in this Jesus tells them that ain’t the case. Jesus was quite clear about this one thing, you might be his seed…but you ain’t his children. And with that Jesus (as Tozer put it) “quietly ruled them out of the Abrahamic covenant.” Wow!! So all that Abraham had, they took for granted, they had…hmmm.
But what about us? We don’t have to worry about that Abrahamic thingy do we? Well, we have a New Covenant in the shed blood of Christ Jesus, so if those Jews foolishly counted their physical descent as their spiritual succession, then surely under that New Covenant we evangelicals should get to count our creedal descent from The Apostles as our spiritual succession, right? After all, we believe the same things that Peter believes; we believe the same things Paul believes; we believe the same thing John believes; even what the writer of Hebrews believes BUT guess what beloved. You might their seed…but you ain’t their children IF you assume because of creedal descent you are in spiritual succession.
I think we can basically call the assumption of physical/creedal descent as our spiritual succession “Identity Theft”. Those Pharisees strutted around wearing Abraham as if it were a fashion statement and all they were doing was saying they have an Abraham but never really counting the cost of an Abraham. And this is happening with Jesus Christ in our times. We wear our Jesus as designed by Paul; we wear our Jesus as designed by Peter; we wear our Jesus as designed by John BUT we never really count the cost, like they had they to. Those men didn’t just wear Jesus, their lives reflected Jesus, because they weren’t just the seed of Jesus…they were His children.
Don’t take for granted, brothers (and sisters) that because you’ve been a pew warmer all your life you’re in right relationship. Don’t take it for granted because mom and dad were Christian, you get to wear their colors. Don’t take any of what Jesus Christ has done on your behave for granted…okay? And so, if down the road, you read a Freedom Fighter and it starts to sound like me but you find my son’s (or daughter’s) name at the end, well then Praise God. It will my hope that they have counted the cost and don’t just wear this as a fashion statement…’cos they may be my seed BUT they’re Jesus’ children. Amen? – Chris Hughes is a graduate of the Colony of Mercy and is a weekly Freedom Fighter blogger
Think About This:“There is only one real proof of spiritual succession from the apostles, the New Testament and the Church fathers: identity. If we can point to ourselves and say, “This,” and then point to the New Testament Church and say, “is that”, and make it stick, then we ought to be the happiest bunch of people in the world”—A.W. Tozer
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless