Reflection for the Week
17th June 2018
Who’s the Daddy?
There’s a saying ‘Who’s the Daddy?’. You’ll find it on T-Shirts and such.
It’s a slang expression – a rhetorical question. It sounds like, and is commonly used as, a boastful claim of dominance of one man over the intended ‘listener’.
As a small child, if you asked Nat, ‘Who’s the Daddy?’ he would reply ‘God’s the Daddy!… Then Mike would ask ‘Who’s your Daddy? and Nat would reply ‘You’re my Daddy… but God’s the Daddy’. Herein lies an understanding of God that considers God to be so much more than any human daddy (with flaws and limitations) can ever be.
In the Garden of Gethsemane – in such great agony – Jesus referred to God as ‘Abba’.
The name “Abba” is one of the most significant names of God in understanding how God relates to people. The word Abba is an Aramaic word that’s most closely translated as “Daddy.” It was a common term that young children would use to address their fathers. It signifies the close, intimate relationship of a father to his child, as well as the childlike trust that a young child puts in his or her “daddy.” This is how intimate our relationship with God can be.
God the Father… ‘Daddy’, is the perfect example for all earthly fathers. He is holy, just, and fair, but his most outstanding quality is love: ‘Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love’ (1 John 4: 8 (NIVUK))
God’s love motivates everything he does. Through the Old Testament we read how God nurtured and protected his people, despite their frequent disobedience. Then in his greatest act of love, God the Father sent his only Son to be the perfect sacrifice for the all the wrongdoing of all humanity – then and now.
In his letter to the church in Rome, Paul tells us “For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs – heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory” (Romans 8: 14-17 (NIVUK))
We are God’s children… God is our Father… our Daddy!
Revd. Janine Atkinson