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Reference: Children (Sons) Of God


There are a few passages in the OT in which the term 'sons of God' is applied to angelic beings (Ge 6:1-4; Job 1:6; 2:1; 38:7; cf. Da 3:25 RV). Once the judges of Israel are referred to as 'gods,' perhaps as appointed by God and vested with His authority (but the passage is very obscure; may the words be ironical?), and, in parallel phrase, as 'sons of the Most High' (Ps 82:6, cf. Joh 10:34; also, Ps 29:1; 89:6 Revised Version margin).

With these exceptions, the term, with the correlative one of 'Father,' designates the relation of men to God and of God to men, with varying fulness of meaning. It is obvious that the use of such a figure has wide possibilities. To call God 'Father' may imply little more than that He is creator and ruler of men (cf. 'Zeus, father of gods and men'); or it may connote some phase of His providence towards a favoured individual or nation; or, again, it may assert that a father's love at its highest is the truest symbol we can frame of God's essential nature and God's disposition towards all men. Similarly, men may conceivably be styled 'children of God' from mere dependence, from special privilege, from moral likeness, or finally from a full and willing response to the Divine Fatherhood in filial love, trust, and obedience. It is, therefore, not surprising that the Scripture facts present a varying and progressive conception of God as Father and of men as His children.

I. In the OT.

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