“This is the One who came by water and blood — Jesus Christ. He did not come by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth.” Luke 12:23-24

When I married into my wife’s family, I heard a phrase I had not used before: “blood is thicker than water.” The primary meaning is that family ties are always more important than the ties you make among friends.

This seems true at several levels.

I am prone to spend more time with family than with friends. I have stronger feelings for my wife and sons than anyone else on earth. I sacrifice more time and money on family than I do for friends.

But there’s another meaning, I think. In 1 John 5 the writer describes Jesus as having come by water and by blood, meaning of God and as human. When Jesus was baptized by water, God smiled and said, “This is My Son in whom I am well pleased,” indicating a spiritually meaningful relationship. And because Jesus lived a flesh-and-blood life, we are told He can relate to our sufferings and temptations — His humanness allows Him to relate to us as His friends, brothers, and sisters.

It’s interesting that when Jesus died for us, He made it possible for us to enter a blood-as-thick-as-water relationship with God. His blood cleansed us so we could be adopted into God’s family, a spiritually meaningful one.

Have you acknowledged Christ’s sacrifice so you can join in the family of God? A few verses later John writes, “Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life” (1 John 5: 12).

Dear God, thank You for the work of Jesus on the cross so I may receive Your forgiveness and enjoy rebirth into Your family. I accept His sacrifice as sufficient for my salvation. Amen.

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For more on being adopted into God’s family, read The Blood Covenant: The Story of God's Extraordinary Love for You by James L. Garlow and Rob Price.

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