Sons and Daughters of God

Summary: Christians, believers in Jesus are new creations — sons and daughters of God.

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We sometimes read Bible verses that refer to sons of God or children of God without realizing the extent of their meaning. Let’s investigate a few of these verses to gain some additional insight.

Luke 3:38 states that Adam was a son of God. The Greek word translated “son” primarily means an immediate male offspring, with emphasis on his character or status as a family member. By extension, the word can apply to either gender. Adam and Eve were direct creations of God, because God personally brought them into existence, though God technically used part of Adam to form Eve. (Gen 2:21-23) All other humans were born to human parents through procreation, not individually created by God.

Elsewhere, the New Testament states, “Yet to all who received [Jesus], to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God — children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” (Jn 1:12-13) Though we originally were born of human parents, by receiving Jesus and believing in his name, we have the right to become children of God. The Greek word translated “children” primarily means an immediate offspring, a child of either gender. In becoming children of God, we are born of him as his direct offspring; that is, we are “born again.” (see Jn 3:3, 7; 1 Pet 1:23)

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Co 5:17) By being born again, we are new creations, exclusively God’s work and entirely different from what we were before. It’s been said that God has no grandchildren. That’s because each of us becomes his immediate offspring, the first generation, personally created by him. Again, “You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus . . . .” (Ga 3:26; see also Ro 8:14)

We discover another application of the phrase, “sons of God,” in a puzzling passage in Genesis Chapter 6. “When men began to increase in number on the earth and daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of men were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose. . . . The Nephilim were on the earth in those days — and also afterward — when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them.” (Ge 6:1-2, 4)

Who were the sons of God in this passage? The Hebrew word translated “sons” is the typical word for an immediate offspring of either gender, so this describes a group of beings created personally by God. In addition to Adam and Eve, God also personally created angels and other spiritual beings. So we might conclude the sons of God in this passage in Genesis were angels; ones we now identify as fallen angels. (see Jude 6)

Sons or children of God are direct creations of God. Adam, the first human, was a son of God. The angels are sons of God because he personally created each of them. And now you and I, as believers in Christ, are new creations — sons and daughters of God.

2 comments on “Sons and Daughters of God

Bill Chase on May 2, 2012 10:19 pm

I too see the connection between John 1:12 and 2 Cor. 5:17. Hebrew=Bane Elohiym. Good study.

Jim Marshall on May 10, 2012 11:11 am

Thanks, Larry. Good, clear and to the point.

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