Question: Do Methodist believe everyone is a child of God?
Answer: Great question. According to United Methodist teaching, Methodist believe the Apostle Paul’s summary of the condition of mankind: “For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23.
But that does not mean that all UMC congregations teach this.
“No hopeful covenant for unity can change the fact that church law, for nearly 50 years, has categorically denied the first principle of unity, that “we are all children of God.” – Darryl W. Stephens
(It’s unclear to me from the covenant for unity if Mr. Stephens means all persons when he says “we are” or only United Methodist.)
“We believe that all people are children of God.” – Collister United Methodist Church.
“Everyone is a child of god,” Becky Hall, Executive Director of Christ United Methodist Church in Chattanooga and a delegate to the UMC Conference.
What does Christ say?
“While everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away.” Matthew 13:25. And, “Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be pulled up by the roots.” Matthew 15: 13-14. “He who sows the good seed is the Son of Man, the field is the world; and the good seed, these are the children of the Kingdom; and the darnel weeds are the children of the evil one. The enemy who sowed them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels.
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.” Matthew 25:31-46
“Once again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was let down into the lake and caught all kinds of fish. When it was full, the fishermen pulled it up on the shore. Then they sat down and collected the good fish in baskets, but threw the bad away. This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Matthew 13:47-14:12
“Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” John 1:12.
“You are doing the works of your own father,” Christ said. But they protested, “We are not illegitimate children. The only Father we have is God himself.” Christ replied, “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him.” John 8:44
“God predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will.” Ephesians 1:5. Paul writing to the church in Ephesus.
“So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith.” Galatians 3:26. Paul writing to the communities in Galatia.
While it might sound pleasing to welcome everyone into a congregation and assure them they are God’s children, Christ says only those who profess faith in him are his brothers and sisters and God’s children. It’s a simple matter to be adopted.
If you wish to become a child of God believe that Christ, the Son of God, came to earth, walked as a man, kept the whole law without committing one sin, and died so YOU could be saved from the death that never ends.
Confess your sins, ask this Christ to become your savior, and believe he now is. Then become baptized with water as an outward sign that you are marked as a child of God and be baptized with the Spirit of Christ so you can be transformed into his image.