Have you ever seen a live theater or film version of “Annie”? If so, you know it’s a classic rags-to-riches story of a little orphan girl who is taken in by a millionaire war tycoon with no kids of his own. Annie goes from what she and her orphan friends call a “hard knock life” to the lap of luxury. Her foster (and eventual adoptive) father, Daddy Warbucks, lavishes on her. He is also rather permissive, allowing Annie anything she wants.
Many a modern church-goer views Christianity the same way. Too many believers only see the blessing in Christianity. They see God like Daddy Warbucks, always ready and waiting to lavish us with blessing. But as Jesus will reveal in today’s text, there’s so much more to Christianity than God’s blessing. Genuine faith runs far deeper than that.
As we study, keep in mind both Theopilus and the Jewish converts of Paul’s day. Those converts, free from the law in Christ, had the same tendency to think only about the blessings of Christianity. They neglected the responsibility to go deeper than mere blessing.