Romans 8:16 NKJV: The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
Romans 8:14 KJV: For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
Here Paul makes a distinction between ‘sons’ of God and ‘children’ of God. In fact the Greek word translated sons is ‘uihos’ and that which is translated ‘children’ is ‘teknon’.
Children are born-again Christians who have not yet matured spiritually or grown to become spiritual young men or fathers (1 Jn. 2.13-14).
Paul again brings out this truth in
Ephesians 4:13 KJV: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
The Greek word translated Son of God here is ‘uihos’ as in Rom. 8.14 speaking of a mature son.
This same truth is echoed in
Galatians 4:1-2 KJV: Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all; (2) But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.
Galatians 4:4-5 KJV: But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, (5) To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.
Here Paul makes a difference between a child who is no different from a servant UNTIL the time appointed by the Father when he will now be recognized as a mature son.
So it takes time to grow from being a spiritual child to becoming a mature son in the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.
In fact it is only these Sons who have grown into the perfection and fulness of Christ that can close this age.
To close this age there are 4 legal requirements that MUST be fulfilled:
Ephesians 6:18 NKJV: praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication FOR ALL the saints—
1 Timothy 2:1 NKJV: Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made FOR ALL MEN,
2. Completing the sufferings (Col. 1.24) of the Church to give God the legal basis to eternally punish Satan and all rebels (2 Th. 1.4-6) and confine them to the bottom less pit (Rev.20.1-3) and the lake of fire (Rev. 21.8).
Colossians 1:24 AMP: [Even] now I rejoice in the midst of my sufferings on your behalf. And in my own person I am making up whatever is still lacking and remains to be completed [on our part] of Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of His body, which is the church.
2 Thessalonians 1:4-6 NKJV: so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, (5) which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer; (6) since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you,
3. Fulfill ALL scripture: manifest the reality of ALL the promises of God to the church symbolized in the types and shadows of the Old Testament:
Matthew 5:17-18 NKJV: “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. (18) For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till ALL is fulfilled.
4. Disciple ALL tribes and tongues: have a perfect church functioning as an effective ‘candlestick’ to bring light and witness in EVERY tribe.
Matthew 24:14 NKJV: And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to ALL the nations, and then the end will come.
Revelation 7:9-10 AMP: After this I looked and a vast host appeared which no one could count, [gathered out] of every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages. These stood before the throne and before the Lamb; they were attired in white robes, with palm branches in their hands. (10) In loud voice they cried, saying, [Our] salvation is due to our God, Who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb [to Them we owe our deliverance]!
In our article next week, we will see in more detail how we can grow to become Sons and so fulfill these requirements for the closing of this age.