See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! 1 John 3:1
Three-year-old Dylan McCoy had just learned to swim when he fell through a rotted plywood covering into a forty-foot deep, stone-walled well in his grandfather’s backyard. Dylan managed to stay afloat in ten feet of water until his father went down to rescue him. Firefighters brought ropes to raise the boy, but the father was so worried about his son that he’d already climbed down the slippery rocks to make sure he was safe.
Oh, the love of a parent! Oh, the lengths (and depths) we will go for our children!
When the apostle John writes to believers in the early church who were struggling to find footing for their faith as false teaching swirled about them, he extends these words like a life-preserver: “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” (1 John 3:1). Naming believers in Jesus as “children” of God was an intimate and legal labeling that brought validity to all who trust in Him.
Oh, the lengths and depths God will go for His children!
There are actions a parent will take only for their child—like Dylan’s dad descending into a well to save his son. And like the ultimate act of our heavenly Father, who sent His only Son to gather us close to His heart and restore us to life with Him (vv. 5–6).
When has God rescued you from a dark well of need? How have you seen Him bring you to a place of hope?
Oh, heavenly Father, thank You for reaching into the well of my need to rescue me and bring me back to You!
Read more about the love of God at DiscoverySeries.org/Q0612.
In 1 John 3:2, John reminds his “dear friends” of the return of Jesus with the phrase “when Christ appears.” The promise of Jesus’ physical return is a consistent theme in the New Testament and was shared by the Savior Himself (Matthew 16:27; Mark 8:38; Luke 9:26; John 14:1–3), then echoed by the angels following His ascension (Acts 1:11). This return is integral to our hope in Christ which carries us through the difficulties of life. In 1 John, however, the apostle’s focus isn’t on endurance in times of trial. Rather, he points us to the appearing of Jesus as the ultimate culmination of God’s plan for His children to be made fully like Him. Notice the pattern of John’s hopeful words: Christ shall appear, we shall see Him, and we’ll be finally and completely conformed to Him. When Jesus returns, God’s transforming work in us will be complete.