Through the earthly life of Jesus, we have gotten to know God in a completely new way, compared to what was possible in the Old Testament. Jesus is the perfect representation of God, His very image. He is God in the flesh. If we really want to know who and how God is – we can learn about that from the example of Jesus Himself.
One of the most significant revelations about God that Jesus presented when He came to earth, was that God is our Father. Over and over again in the Gospels, we see that Jesus referred to God as our Father, which was a relatively unknown concept of God in the Old Testament.
Through Jesus – and the revelation of His finished work – we have gotten to know God as our heavenly Daddy. And there are obviously more aspects of Him being our Father that we need to discover!
However, we should not only get to know our Father. It is also very important that we get to know our Mother! Did you know that all believers in Jesus actually have a mother?
Paulus says in the 4th chapter of Galatians:
19 My little children, for whom I labor in birth again until Christ is formed in you, 20 I would like to be present with you now and to change my tone; for I have doubts about you. 21 Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not hear the law? 22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons: the one by a bondwoman, the other by a freewoman. 23 But he who was of the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and he of the freewoman through promise, 24 which things are symbolic. For these are the two covenants: the one from Mount Sinai which gives birth to bondage, which is Hagar— 25 for this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia, and corresponds to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children— 26 but the Jerusalem above is free, which is the mother of us all. 27 For it is written: “Rejoice, O barren, You who do not bear! Break forth and shout, You who are not in labor! For the desolate has many more children than she who has a husband.” 28 Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are children of promise. 29 But, as he who was born according to the flesh then persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, even so it is now. 30 Nevertheless what does the Scripture say? “Cast out the bondwoman and her son, for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.” 31 So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman but of the free. (Gal. 4:19-31)
In the context of Paul is telling the Galatians not to return to the law, he uses a picture from the Old Testament. Abraham’s two women, Sarah and Hagar, symbolically represent two different covenants: Hagar is a picture of the Old Covenant, which leads people into religious slavery, while Sarah is a picture of the New Covenant, which leads people into freedom.
Paul says regarding Sarah that she is our mother. We are not the children of the slave woman, but of the free woman! What Paul means is that we who are born-again believers are children of the New Covenant – the covenant of grace and freedom. Only once we get rid of Hagar (v. 30) – the Old Covenant of law and slavery – can Christ truly be formed in us (v. 19), so that we grow up into spiritual maturity.
In a time of huge confusion, where it is the norm rather than the exception that church leaders mix truths from the New Covenant with truths from the Old, we need to take heed to Paul’s message. We must get to know our spiritual Mother. We must be established in the New Covenant!