It is intriguing that we are able with full confidence to call God Father.
As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. 2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
Deuteronomy 6:4 is very precious to the tradition of Judaism and is repeated often. “Hear Israel, the LORD our God the LORD is One.” It is equally precious to Christians. It is a bold statement that there is only one God and he is our God. Through the gospel we learn that our one God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. For Christians it is very clear that we are reconciled to God through the saving work of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the one mediator who has presented himself as the righteous sacrifice for us. He defeated death for us and now pleads his merits for us before his Father. So perfectly has he completed his saving work, we are able to call his Father, our Father.
Therefore, when the Holy Spirit applies the work of Jesus to our lives, we believe in him and we cry “Abba, Father.” In this new birth we spontaneously acknowledge our heavenly Father. This is the experience of all Christians. When we pray together, we say, “Our Father.” We rejoice in him as the one who sent his son, our precious saviour. We are confident we know him because if we know Jesus we know the Father because Jesus said, “if you know me you know my Father.” He also said, “the Father and I are one.” Christians can too easily make a separation between the Father and the Son. This leads to people wondering what the Father is like. The clear biblical answer to that is the Father is just like Jesus, same attitudes, same compassion and love, same holiness and grace.
Here in Ephesians 4:6 Paul is reminding us that we all have the Father as our Father. Hence, all of us know that he is the one who provides for all our needs in life. Jesus tells us (Matthew 6), that we can be so confident of his care and that we don’t need to worry about things like food and clothing. He will provide for us. So great is his provision for our greatest need, he sent his beloved Son to save us.
These are truths we delight in as individuals but here the Apostle is urging us to look beyond ourselves to our fellow believers who share in the love of the Father. We are truly brothers and sisters in Christ. We can then encourage one another that our Father is “over all, through all and in all.” The specifics of this statement are a little vague, but the full thought is clear. Our Father is in control of his universe and hence in control of our lives. We can encourage one another with the confidence that he really does work all things together to the good of his people. Having embraced us in the love of Jesus Christ we can be encouraged that nothing can snatch us out of his hand. When we look at our fellow believers, we see people who are dearly loved by him. What a great encouragement that is for us to love and care for one another.
Prayer: Loving Father, what a privilege it is for us to call you Father. How great and perfect is your love to us. Help us to enjoy the blessings and express our delight in you today and always. In Jesus name. Amen.
A song to listen to: Raised with Christ
Living Church – Creek Road