What happens when a child of God realizes the truth that they’re not a dirty sinner anymore? That they’re not orphaned, that they’re holy, blameless and have been included in the eternal fellowship between the Father and the Son in the Spirit?
What if they keep talking about wanting the “more” of heaven here on earth?
And what is often the reaction from many Christian brothers and sisters when these people talk about finding themselves in their heavenly Father’s loving embrace as a fully-affirmed son or daughter in His Kingdom here on earth?
What I have often witnessed is something curiously strange.
But before I get to that, I’m thinking of a scene from the 1968 musical, “Oliver!” Let’s watch it, shall we?
(YouTube video from maisa)
If you get what I’m trying to say here, you’ve got to love the analogy. As blood-bought Christians, we’ve been living like orphan children–like earthbound victims in Christ, not living from our home in heaven (Eph.2:6; Phil.3:20), going to our orphan churches, hoping Papa will show up one day and bring us home.
And sadly, for many, having Mr.Bumble as your pastor–doling out skimpy portions of life-giving grace, yet pouring out a cauldron of the “gruel” of how rotten you are, naming you with these alien identities, teaching false-humility, empty philosophy, opinions filled with fear–what’s wrong with the world, the government, sinners–mixed in with all the legal requirements of being in God’s good favor.
The result is, nobody’s feeling any joy of the Lord. Emaciated and malnourished on this diet of fear mongering, obligation and manipulation, there’s no real freedom.
You’ll get freedom from your miserable existence here on earth when you die and go to heaven…
But we have a banner on our wall that says, “God is love!”
But then one of the orphans wakes up and realizes that he doesn’t have to live like this anymore. He has a Father in heaven who loves him and affirms him as a son.
What is the response from the Mr. Bumbles and the other orphans to this startling revelation of God’s scandalous grace and love?
Please sir, I want some more.
Please sir…I want some…more?
Catch him, snatch him!
Hold him! Scold him!
Pounce him, trounce him
Pick him up and bounce him!
(from Oliver! 1968 musical)
How dare you say that you’re a saint! A beloved son of the Living God! That you’re dead to sin and free from your old sin nature!(Rom.6:6, 11-13; Col.3:3).
How dare you say you’re already seated in heaven and that “as Jesus is, so are you in this world!” (1 John 4:17).
How dare you say that sin shall not have dominion over you, that you’re not a victim but always triumphing in Christ, that you can never be separated from the love of God (Rom.6:14; 8:37-39; 2 Cor.2:14).
And how dare you say that you’ll do what Jesus did, and even greater things (John 14:12; 20:21)–that you’ll lay hands on the sick and they will recover, that you’ll cast out demons and even raise the dead (Matt.10:7-8; 28:18-19; Mark 16:17-18), that all principalities and powers are under your feet because they are under Jesus’ feet and you’re in Him (Eph.1:18-23; 2:6).
How dare you…you…heretic! False prophet!
We were warned about your kind by pastor Bumble and on our fear blogs, books, websites and radio. Yes, and oooohhhh (use scary religious voice here)…in the last days…oohhhhh!
Yes. we were told your type would start showing up…leading us orphans astray. Giving us false hope…
Now, sit down, shut up and be a powerless victim like the rest of us. Ha! 🙂
Beloved, is your view of your heavenly Father more like Mr. Bumble than Jesus? (John 14:7-9) And are you surprised when He does something good for you? That He not only wants to give you more, but “exceedingly, abundantly above all you can ask or think” (Eph.3:20)?
Do we see Jesus as our loving savior and friend, but the Father as distant, absent and scary? After all, we were told over and over that He had to turn His back on Jesus so He might do that with us too. I wrote about this here and here…
Todd White said this about the importance of our identity as sons…
“If I don’t realize when I get born again that God is my Father, I’ll be headed for heaven but I’ll live like hell until I get there.”
I think it’s time we shed these orphan rags and start believing and asking for the “more” of God that’s our rightful inheritance in Christ (Eph.1:18). For Paul prayed that we would know this. Why? Because it’s possible not to know it!
It’s your Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom. All that He has is yours (Luke 12:32; 15:31). Stand up and ask for more.