Abba, Father

For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, ‘Abba, Father.’”—Romans 8:15 (NKJV)

If there’s one way God wants us to relate to Him, it’s as a Father. As we see in the Book of Romans above, it is even the Holy Spirit’s agenda to reveal the One who adopted us into the family of faith as our “Abba, Father.”

In the original context, Abba was the most intimate expression a child could direct to their Father. It’s comparable to Daddy or Papa in our vernacular. This may sound irreligious to some, but it’s music to God’s ears. He wants us to approach Him with the childlike wonder and trust little ones have as they curl up on their father’s laps and lovingly cling to them. God wants us to know Him like this, to have the same kind of confidence in Him as any child has in their earthly father. 

Actually, He wants our trust to run even deeper than this, because as loving as earthly fathers are, none of them can compare to God the Father in heaven. Jesus makes this quite clear when He draws the following comparison in His Sermon on the Mount: “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him” (Matthew 7:11 NKJV)!

Did you catch that? “If you . . .being evil . . .” Jesus is saying the best dad on his best day is still an evil man when compared to the Father in heaven. This is a teaching technique Jesus often used called the lesser to the greater, where He would state truth about a lesser example and then really raise the truth-stakes by pointing to a greater example. If an earthly (fallen) father knows how to be good to his children, just imagine how good a flawless Father in heaven will be! 

That’s the kind of father God wants us to know and trust Him as. He wants us to have complete confidence in His ability and desire to protect us from any fear and provide for our every need. We can and will as His Spirit continues to reveal Him to us as our “Abba, Father.”   

DIG: How does God want us to know Him as?

DISCOVER: What does this relationship imply? How does this relationship happen?

DISPLAY: Spend time thanking the Lord for being such a good father. 

About the Author

Pastor Dan Hickling

Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.