The Family of God
“While he yet talked to the people, behold, his mother and his brethren stood without, desiring to speak with him. Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee. But he answered and said unto him that told him, Who is my mother? And who are my brethren? And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold, my mother and my brethren” – (Mt.12:46-9).
“Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named” – (Eph.3:15).
God has a wonderful family. Some people think that their local church or their denomination is the whole family of God. Then there are some who think it is the church saved from the Day of Pentecost to the rapture or second coming of Christ. But God has saved people long before the church came into existence, the O.T. saints are also a part of God’s family of saints. The angels are also a part of God’s family. But in this age we are primarily concerned with the church family.
To become a member of God’s family you must be born again into it. As it takes a fleshly birth to become a member of a human family, so it takes a spiritual birth to become a part of God’s family. God is a Spirit, and so He births us into His family with a Spiritual birth. You do not join God’s family, you are born into it in an instant by repentance and faith in Christ in your heart. We are forged, not by natural birth, but by spiritual birth, forged by our hearing and being born of God’s Spirit by the Word of God. God’s family is also called “the household of God” – (Eph.2:19) and “the household of faith” – (Gal.6:10). We are the house of God when the Holy Spirit baptizes us into the body of Christ and indwells us. Other born again believers are our spiritual fathers, mothers, brothers and sisters – (I Tim.5:1,2).
Jesus shows us this plainly with my sermon text in (Mt.12). The Lord is saying that the strongest relationship is the relationship between Christ and a true believer. If you are a child of God and you have unsaved family members you are closer to the Lord Jesus than you are to them if they’re not saved, including the mother and father that begat you. You are more closely related to other believers than you are to unsaved member of your natural family. Christ is talking about a marvelous new relationship that happens when you’re born again through Christ. Your true brethren are those who are indwelt by the Holy Spirit.
The brethren in (Mt.12:46) are Jesus’ half-brothers whose names were James, Joses, Simon, and Judas and He also had half-sisters – (Mt.13:55,56). These were the children of Mary and Joseph, while Jesus was the Son of Mary and God. These brothers of Jesus were evidently not converted at this time and did not believe in Christ – (Jn.7:5). They were among them who tarried for the Holy Spirit on Pentecost (Acts ).
What Jesus commanded others to do in being willing to forsake all including family, He himself did with reference to His own loved ones – (Lk.14:26-33). Jesus forsook His family, and having a wife and family of His own and all the things of this world, so that we, through Him, might be a member of the family of God.
And many times our natural family will forsake you when you become a born again member of the family of God. “For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me” – (Mt.10:35-37). Families have been divided because the born again saint no longer lives like the rest of his family because he’s now a holy creature in Christ and the unsaved despise holiness even as they despise the Holy One. Holy spiritual living and the world don’t mix.
I’ve seen vicious conflict between unsaved husbands and wives and between unsaved parents and saved children. And it’s because there are so many families already divided by divorce in these end times that this conflict is much worse. When one is born again of the Holy Spirit, it brings division in the family – “For from hence forth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three” – (Lk.12:52). Persecution arises – “But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now” – (Gal.4:29). The battle rages in the very homes and families of God’s people. And it will get so bad during the soon coming Tribulation that the unsaved family members will cause the saved saints in their families to be put to death – “And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death” – (Mt.10:21).
Are you saved and born again into the family of God? Born again describes what happens to you when you’re truly saved. You become a new creature in Christ- (2 Cor.5:17). God’s Word is a seed that germinates in you when you believe the gospel. The Word of God is alive: it liveth and abideth forever – (I Pet.1:23-25). Repent of your sins and believe on Christ in your heart by faith and you will be born again into the family of God.
Pastor Mike Storti
5000 N. LaCholla-