The Question is: if we are Children of God, do we still need a babysitter?
I suppose all of us need some babysitting here and there. That why the law is there, to “enforce the rules”. Allow me to stretch the babysitter metaphor a little more.
At some point kids will grow up and hopefully will outgrow the need for a babysitter.They will get a drivers license, go to college, get married and have kids. The choice pyramid from Love and Logic parenting explains this transition well:
- Younger kids need more limits and less choices. Hence the need for a babysitter (to feed, to change diapers, to put to sleep).
- Older kids get more choices and less limits (more play-dates, sleep overs, field trips, etc).
- Parents hope that their kids will “launch” one day in adult life with internalized the principles, taught at young age.
That’s how God intended the law to work for the Israelites. As a babysitter for people still developing spiritual maturity. At the Mount Sinai on Exodus 20, God gave very few choices and lots of limits (laws). As the Bible story progresses towards Jeremiah 31:33, we find God seeking to put laws in their hearts.
This is similar to parents wanting their kids to internalize good values when they are young. Ultimately in the New Testament, Jesus makes a brand new covenant with the disciples at the Last Supper (Mat 26:26-27). After that Jesus Spirit would work to internalize ALL laws in all believers heart. And that’s why you and I are here studying the Bible today!
So in Gal 3:26 Paul states we are all children of God. What he means is that God accepts us ALL as we are into His family. That’s regardless of what we’ve done or accomplished. But even as His children, God expects that our relationship with Him deepens, as we internalize his Will for our lives thru His Spirit living in us.