I heard some people say: My pastor taught me that “I am a SON OF GOD, JUST LIKE JESUS” because I did not REJECT Him.
This was based on John 1:12
This however is a complete wrong interpretation of this Bible verse.
Let us see what this verse says:
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name (trust in Jesus)
“RECEIVED” in this verse could indeed also be translated by “not reject”, but in the context I prefer what the Bible translators used. “Received”.
The original word has the meaning of “to take with the hand”, or “to lay hold of any person or thing IN ORDER TO USE IT”.
So this involves a FOLLOWING ACTION.
Receive Jesus, TAKE HIM BY THE HAND TO FOLLOW HIM. Not merely “not rejecting” Him.
The word POWER in this verse can also be translated with: the RIGHT, or the PRIVILEGE.
So if you follow Jesus, you have the RIGHT TO BECOME (you are not yet, but you can become) sons (meaning: offspring, children).
So you will NOT get THE SAME POSITION as Jesus. The pastor who said “I am just like Jesus; in fact I am Jesus” spoke pure BLASPHEMY.
Why did I say that you are NOT YET sons (children) of God?
That is because it is a matter of growth (following), and also this verse says that IF we FOLLOW Jesus it becomes within our power.
Some pastors teach (mostly based on out of context taken verses or parts of verses) that as soon as you DON’T REJECT Jesus, you are a child of God. This is NOT BIBLICAL.
Others teach that as soon as one says ‘AMEN’ after a so called “SINNER’S PRAYER” one is a child of God. Even if the person didn’t REPENT of his or her sin.
This too is NOT BIBLICAL.
After RECEIVING Him we must start FOLLOWING Him and LEARN from Him.