Revive Our Hearts Podcast

There Is No "Unchilding" You

Leslie Basham: Nancy Leigh DeMoss says when you’re adopted into God’s kingdom, it’s for good.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: No matter what I do, if I am truly His child, there is no "unfathering" Christ, and there is no "unchilding" us.

Leslie: This is Revive Our Hearts with Nancy Leigh DeMoss for Tuesday, December 11.

Yesterday Nancy helped us marvel at the wonder of Christ in a series called, His Name Is Wonderful. Take some time with Nancy to wonder at the Savior on this hectic season.

Nancy: In the midst of all the preparations, I pray that you’re taking the time to savor the wonder of it all, to marvel at who Christ is, why He came, and what He came to do.

We're looking at four names of Jesus that God announced over 700 years before the Messiah was born. We read them in Isaiah chapter 9:6.

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon His shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Today we want to look at that second name, the Mighty God. That’s taken from two Hebrew words: El-Gibbor—E-L and then G-I-B-B-O-R. El is a masculine noun for God that emphasizes might and strength, and Gibbor is an Old Testament word that speaks of a warrior, a champion, a chief, somebody who is mighty, strong, valiant. It’s often used in the Old Testament and translated in some of your translations as a "mighty man of valor," a Gibbor, a champion.

We’re told in this name for Christ—Mighty God—that the child to be born, this Messiah, will be God. Jesus is God. Now there are many different religions in the world today that will tell you otherwise about Christ, but His Father has told us, and His Word is true. He is God. He is the Mighty God. He is the omnipotent God—the one who said as He was getting ready to leave earth and go back to heaven: “All power and authority is given unto me in heaven and on earth” (Matt. 28:18 paraphrased). The Mighty God, the omnipotent God.

The context for this passage in the book of Isaiah is that King Ahaz and the nation of Judah, the southern nation, were being threatened by two nations to the north. Israel and Syria were threatening to attack the nation of Judah. King Ahaz and the people of Judah were tempted to look to a third power, the king of Assyria, whose name was Tiglath-Pileser, that was his name. They wanted to look to Tiglath-Pileser, the king of Assyria, to help them against the coming power of the Syrians and the nation of Israel from the north.

In that context, God said, “There’s a son coming; there’s a child coming whose name will be the Mighty King, the Mighty Champion, the Powerful Warrior.”

The point here is that no one in heaven or on earth can challenge the reign and the rule of the Mighty God. No power can overcome Him. He is the irresistible champion of the universe.

I want us to look at a couple other places in the Old Testament where we see this name for God—El-Gibbor. It sheds a little more light on what it means.

The first passage is in Deuteronomy chapter 10. The context here is when the Children of Israel have just worshiped the golden calf. Remember that? While Moses was up getting the Ten Commandments, the children were having this lewd ceremony, worshiping this golden calf, God was furious and sent judgment.

There was destruction that took place. Some people died. But God is also merciful. After Moses had broken those first tablets on which were written the Ten Commandments, God gave Moses new tablets of stone on which were written the Ten Commandments.

Then we come to Deuteronomy chapter 10, and we see in this passage that, God’s people having just gone through this horrible incident, God is both merciful and mighty.

We tend to focus on one or the other aspect of God, but He is both.

Deuteronomy 10:14–15:

Behold, to the LORD your God belong heaven and the heaven of heavens, the earth with all that is in it. Yet the LORD set his heart in love on your fathers and chose their offspring after them, you above all peoples, as you are this day.

The Children of Israel who had just worshiped this golden calf, Moses says, “God loves you. God chose you, and He’s still chosen you to be His people.” Then he says in verse 16:

Therefore, circumcise the foreskin of your heart, and be no longer stubborn, for the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God. (vv. 16-17)

He is the Mighty God. That’s the first reference in the Bible to El-Gibbor. The one who is merciful, the one who chose you, the one who loves you, the one who will pardon your iniquity is also the great and mighty God.

Now, in the book of Jeremiah, there’s a point at which Jeremiah is told by God to go and purchase a field while the city is under siege by the Babylonians. God says, “This purchase of this piece of real estate is a symbol that My people will once again own property and live in this land.” But at the moment, with the Babylonians knocking down the doors and getting ready to take over the land, it seems impossible and hopeless that God’s people will ever have a home in Palestine again.

So Jeremiah calls out to the Lord in chapter 32, and he says essentially, “God, I want to trust You, but I don’t understand why You told me to buy this piece of property when the Babylonians are getting ready to take over all the real estate in the country.” So he says,

After I have taken the deed of purchase to Baruch, I prayed to the LORD, saying: "Ah, Lord GOD! It is You who has made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for You. You show steadfast love to thousands, but you repay the guilt of fathers to their children after them, O great and mighty God, whose name is the Lord of hosts.” (vv 16–18)

So he starts by saying, “God, I know You’re great. I know that nothing is too hard for You.” Then he goes on to say, in a lengthier part of this prayer, in essence, “But the Babylonians are about to take us over. Help me understand how Your promises are going to come true. Why did You tell me to buy this piece of real estate when it looks like there’s no hope?”

Verse 26, Jeremiah chapter 32: “Then the Word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, ‘Behold, I am God, the Lord of all flesh. Is anything too hard for Me?”

Then God goes on to explain, “Yes, the Babylonians are going to destroy this city, and Judah will go into captivity, but one day I will bring them back to this land, and they will own property, and that’s why I told you to buy this piece of real estate.”

You know who’s going to do all this? El-Gibbor, the mighty God. This great and mighty God will bring salvation out of judgment. There is hope as long as there is God because He is El-Gibbor, the great and mighty God.

So in this name—the Mighty God—we see a couple of important things about Christ.

We see first of all His humiliation.

The fact that the Mighty God would condescend to become a child, would come to this earth born as a baby in a cow shed—the Mighty God became the child given to us. It’s His humiliation.

And yet we see His power at the same time. He is mighty to save, mighty to deliver His people. No one else has the power to deliver. The situation Jeremiah was in, the situation the Jews were in at the time in which Isaiah made his prophecy in Isaiah, those situations were impossible—unless you knew El-Gibbor. They required the power of God to intervene.

Today, our situation, our world is hopeless if it’s not for the intervention of El-Gibbor. When you start to feel like little Jeremiah, “Oh God, I know You’ve got promises, but I can’t see how they’re going to come true.” Remember what God says? “I am El-Gibbor. I am the Mighty God. Nothing is too hard for Me.”

Where do you turn when you need help? Where do you look for strength? Are you, perhaps, trying to carry burdens that are too hard for you to carry alone? Do you rely on your own strength? Or do you find strength in El-Gibbor?

The Psalmist said, “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God” (20:7).

What is His name? El-Gibbor, the Mighty God.

Paul says to the Ephesians: “Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might” (6:10).

We considered the name Wonderful Counselor. That means He has the wisdom to rule, but when we look at the Mighty God, that tells us He has the power to execute His plans. He has the power to pull it off, to carry it out.  

The power of God—today—the power of El-Gibbor who has come to live in us is powerful enough to break the chains of sin in your life and in mine. El-Gibbor can enable me today to say “no” to sin and to say “yes” to righteousness.

The apostle Paul said in Ephesians 1:

[I pray] that you may know . . . what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. (vv. 19–21)

Then Ephesians chapter 3:

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, [and I pray] . . . that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power [Whose power? The power of El-Gibbor] that he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being. . . . Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all we ask or think, according to the power at work within us [the power of El-Gibbor, the Mighty God] to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever. Amen. (vv. 14–16, 20–21).

Leslie: Nancy Leigh DeMoss will be right back with the second half of today’s Revive Our Hearts program.

We’re so thankful for a mighty God who makes Revive Our Hearts possible. We’ve watched Him provide what we need over and over, allowing us to stay on the air in your area and to connect with women around the world.

He’s provided a matching challenge to help us end the year strong and move into ministry in 2013. Thanks to all who have been helping us meet this challenge amount of $450,000. We really need to meet this match. If we don't, we'll have to consider scaling back our ministry outreach—including considering going off the air on some stations.

Would you help us meet and then far exceed this challenge? Donate at ReviveOurHearts.com, or call 1-800-569-5959.

Nancy’s been telling us about the Mighty God and is now moving into another one of His names from Isaiah 9.

Nancy: The Everlasting Father. It means He is the Father of eternity. An opposite sense of the use of this word is found in John chapter 8 where we’re told that Satan is the father of lies (see v. 44). It means he’s the originator, the source of lies. So when we talk about the everlasting Father, we’re really talking about the one who is the originator or the source of eternity. He’s the creator of all things, including time: past, present, and future.

He is the author of eternal life. The paradox in this passage is that this child is yet to be born—this is 700-some years before His birth we’re being told these names—and yet He will be the Father of eternity, the originator, the source of eternity. The Father of eternity stepped into time and became a child, became a son given.

Now I want us, over these moments, to look at three things:

First, that He is everlasting; then that He is a father; and then that He is the Everlasting Father.

First of all, the Lord Jesus is everlasting. We saw in the name Wonderful Counselor that He is all-wise. We saw in the name El-Gibbor, the Mighty God, He is all powerful, and now we see in the name Everlasting Father that He is eternal.

He is one with the Father who exists from everlasting to everlasting. There never was a time when Christ did not exist. He existed in eternity past.

Proverbs chapter 8 tells us that He was with God at the time of creation.

When He established the heavens, I was there . . . and when he marked out the foundations of the earth, then I was beside him (v. 27).

Christ didn’t start when He became a baby here on this earth. He always was. He’s everlasting, and not only did He exist everlastingly in eternity past, but He will exist everlastingly in eternity future. He will exist forever. He never began to be; He will never cease to be. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Now, we can’t get our minds around that. There’s no way to grasp it, but we can trust it. We can believe it. He has no beginning and no end.

When I think of Christ being everlasting, I think of the Old Testament character Melchizedek. We’re told of Melchizedek that he was a priest. He was the king of Salem, and he was the priest of the Most High God. Hebrews 7 tells us that Melchizedek met Abraham when Abraham returned from a battle.

The Scripture says that Melchizedek, who is an Old Testament type of Christ, the Everlasting One, that Melchizedek was "without father or mother or genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but resembling the Son of God, he continues a priest forever" (v. 3).

Now you may not understand or remember all that stuff about Melchizedek, but the point is Christ never had a beginning, and Christ will never have an end. That means that His reign as the King will be eternal.

Isaiah 9 goes on to tell us in verse 7: “Of the increase of his government and of peace, there will be no end” because He is the everlasting Father.

He is eternal in His Person. He’s eternal in all of His attributes, and He is eternal—thank God—in His ministry to us as believers.

Scripture tells us that this same Savior, this same Christ is the author and the finisher of our faith. What God has begun in us, He will continue, and He will bring it to completion (see Phil. 1:6). Aren’t you glad? 

No matter what I do, no matter how I fail, He is my priest who ever lives and intercedes in heaven for me at the right hand of the throne of God. So He is everlasting.

Then we see that He is a father. Now this is not to confuse Him with God the Father. God the Father and God the Son have distinct roles, but there is a sense in which Jesus Christ is a father to us. He’s the father of eternity; He’s the father of the Christian faith, but also in a personal sense, He fathers us.

We saw His name as Mighty God. When you think about a mighty God, a powerful warrior, a champion, you think of someone who is to be revered, someone who is to be respected. That’s true of Christ, but as the King of our hearts, and as the King of His Church, and ultimately as the King of this world, He rules with compassion and tenderness and kindness as a father cares for His children.

Yes, He’s the Mighty God; yes, He’s to be revered. We should tremble before Him. But He is also a father. He loves those He rules as His own children.

Psalm 103 describes the father heart of the Lord Jesus:

As a father shows compassion to his children, so the LORD shows compassion to those who fear him. For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust. (vv. 13–14)

He’s a tender, compassionate, caring father.

And can I say that whether your earthly father was a great dad or is a very poor and weak example of a dad, or maybe you never even knew who your father was at all, we have in the Lord Jesus and in our Heavenly Father a father that far surpasses all earthly fathers—even the best of them.

As we’re in this Christmas holiday season, and perhaps even after the holiday season when all the activity is said and done, you may feel let down; you may feel alone; you may feel orphaned. You maybe never had a real father. You may feel like there’s no one who really cares for your soul.

I want to assure you on the basis of God’s Word that the Lord Jesus cares for you. He’s concerned about you. He loves you. He’s committed to what is best for you. He is a father to those who fear Him and trust Him.

And He is the everlasting Father. The son given to us is an everlasting father. That shows the greatness of the Son who was born in that manager on that first Christmas, and it shows the humility of the everlasting Father, once again, that the Everlasting Father would stoop to step into time and to become one of us.

The fact that He’s an everlasting father means that He will love you forever. Once you are His child, if you are His child, He will always be your father. He will never leave you. He will never forsake you. You are eternally secure because He is the Everlasting Father.

Charles Spurgeon wrote a little piece on this text in which he talks about what it means that He is an everlasting father. Let me just read some of those words to you. He said,

He is an Everlasting Father to all those to whom He is a father at all. [In other words, if He is your father, He’s an everlasting father.] If you have entered into this relationship so as to be in union with Christ, you are His child, and you will forever be. There is no unfathering Christ, and there is no unchilding us.

I love that. No matter what I do, if I am truly His child, “there is no unfathering Christ, and there is no unchilding us.” Spurgeon goes on to say,

He is everlastingly a father to those who trust in Him. This morning you may have come here in trouble, but Christ is still your father. This day you may be much depressed in spirit and full of doubts and fears, but a true father never ceases, if he be a father, to exercise his kindness to a child, nor does Jesus cease to love and pity you. He will help you. Go to Him, and you shall find that loving friend to be as tender as in the days of His flesh.

Is He your father? If not, He can be—right now. You can trust Him. Repent of going your own way. Repent of your sin, and say, “Lord Jesus, I trust You to be my Savior. I want You to be my everlasting father.”

If He is your father, everlastingly, throughout all of eternity, He will never cease to be a father to you.

Leslie: Christmas is really about adoption. The event we celebrate gives you a chance to become a child of God. Nancy Leigh DeMoss has been describing this amazing fact in the series, His Name Is Wonderful.

It’s the type of teaching we’re excited to bring you in 2013—and the type of teaching that is challenging listeners like Rachel. Nancy has the story.

Nancy: “I had always operated under the assumption that the gospel was elementary, for beginners only.”

That’s how an email began that a woman named Rachel sent to Revive Our Hearts.

She told us how important the Revive Our Hearts podcast has been to her this year. As she listened she says, “Suddenly, I realized that I had been self-righteous and proud.

“I had always considered myself righteous and moral, but inside I was filled with sinful attitudes. I could see others' sin clearly, but not mine.”

Through the course of this year, the Lord truly revived Rachel's heart.  She said, “God brought me to an overwhelming conviction of my sin and repentance of it. I praise Him!” 

It’s just one of many, many stories Revive Our Hearts has received this year about the way God is using this program to draw women to Himself.

We were able to provide Rachel with the podcast version of this program because of listeners who believe enough in this ministry and this message to give to make it possible.

Right now we’re in the process of evaluating what kind of ministry we’ll be able to undertake during the coming year, 2013. A lot of those decisions will be based on how much the Lord provides during the month of December. As we've been sharing with you, some special friends of this ministry have offered up a challenge. They’ve said, “If you give, we’ll match that gift.” They’re matching the gift of each listener this month up to a total of $450,000.

We are asking the Lord over these next couple of weeks to help us meet and then far surpass this challenge amount. Would you help us meet that match? You can do that by giving us a call at 1-800-569-5959. Let us know how much the Lord is prompting you to give to help us meet this year-end challenge. Or you can get all the details and make your donation by visiting us online at ReviveOurHearts.com.

Leslie: Around Christmastime you might often hear Jesus referred to as the Prince of Peace.

Nancy: So whether it is personal peace, relational peace, world peace . . . you can never have true peace apart from knowing and being ruled by the Prince of Peace, Sar Shalom, the baby that was born in Bethleham's manger. Let Him be the Prince, the King, the Govenor, the Ruler of peace.

Leslie: Learn the significance of that name when Nancy's back tomorrow for Revive Our Hearts.

Revive Our Hearts is an outreach of Life Action Ministries.

All Scripture is taken from the English Standard Version.


*Offers available only during the broadcast of the podcast season.