Touching the Fathers Heart | John Wimber
By, John Wimber
Jesus revealed that fatherhood is the very essence of the Godhead. In fact, one of his primary purposes for coming was to show us a full revelation of his heavenly Father. “No once has ever seen God,” the apostle John writes, “but God the One and Only [Jesus], who is at the Father’s side, has made him known” (John 1:18).
Jesus attaches two significant qualifications to his understanding of divine fatherhood. First, when he speaks of God as the Father of others he almost refers to his disciples. He taught that sin brought about change in men and women, necessitating rebirth and reconciliation to God (John 3:3; 8:42; 14:6). In accordance with this, the apostles taught that it is only through Christ that we become children of God and are free to call God our Father (Gal. 4:6). We are adopted sons and daughters by grace: “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship [or adoption]. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father’” (Rom. 8:15).
Adoption, which was common among the Greeks and Romans, granted all the privileges of a natural son, including full inheritance rights. But heavenly adoption is superior to him an adoption. It goes beyond the legal rights of Greek and Roman adoption, promising that as we grow up in Christ we are transformed into our Father’s likeness, taking on his attributes of love, mercy, compassion, and holiness (Rom. 8:29). Spiritual adoption also opens up an intimate, personal relationship with the Father in which we experience his love and affirmation and confidently pray to him in Jesus’ name (John 14:14).