The Way of Sonship Book

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            If you struggle in your adversities, this is a book for you. From the perspective of the Bible, the many faces of adversity— whether rejection, interpersonal conflict, heartache, the very deepest oppression of trying events—are intentional. They are never random. In fact, I remember one of my professors in a counseling class saying, “God’s intention in the trials of life is either to bring us to Christ, or to make us more like Him.” I never forgot those words from Paul Tripp. For the elect of God, the process of conformity could never be clearer. Biblical sanctification is the way of the cross, the way of sonship. And as Charles Spurgeon writes,

Those who take hold of eternal life will have to fight for it. The way of spiritual life is no easy one; we will have to contest every step of the way.1

            The obvious truth from Scripture for every child of God is this: the cross of Jesus must be borne to the end. This is the plan and the purpose of our redeeming God in the sanctification of our souls. “Now, may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” (I Thessalonians 5:23).

            Trials of course are seen as the means to the end. It’s just the way of the sons of light, and no power outside the throne of God will dissuade that decree! It was the way of the Son of God and it must be the way of His offspring in the Gospel.

We ought to pant after sanctification; we ought to be crying and sighing every day after conformity to Christ.2

            Triumph and joy in a pilgrimage that is beset by difficulty can only come about by peering through the lens of divine revelation. The long view of things disables shortsighted funks and slumps. Eyes firmly set upon the goal of Christ will see us home, and grace enables the pursuit of His steps. Hallelujah!

For in bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was entirely appropriate that God — for whom and through whom all things exist — should make the source of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For the one who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father. That is why Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters. (Hebrews 2:10-11 CSB)


            In conclusion, this book is a theological practicum of life’s loftiest venture, highest meditation, and holiest pursuit — the pursuit of Christ and the way of sonship.


—Dr. Mark L. Graham