Small Group Tools
Contemporary Comments 2016
Children of the Promise
Texts: Romans 9
December 9, 2017
It’s always sad to see families divided over inheritances. Country music legend Glen Campbell died August 8 from Alzheimer’s disease, and according to documents filed last week in Nashville, Campbell’s will excludes three of his eight kids. Family bickering that began before his death appears likely to continue.
The Nashville Tennessean reported that Campbell’s will states that his daughter Kelli Campbell and sons William Travis Campbell and Wesley Kane Campbell should not have any direct benefit from his estate, estimated at $50 million. The will directed that the “Rhinestone Cowboy” singer was “specifically excluding” the three children from receiving anything under the will or a related trust. The will provides an inheritance for five children: Debra Cloyd and Dillon, Nicklaus, Shannon and Ashley Campbell. The three left out are children Campbell had with his second wife Billie Jean Nunley.
A hearing on the will is slated for January 18, but will likely be just the beginning of a long court battle over the singer’s fortune. The family’s dispute is long-standing, with Debby Campbell-Cloyd and Travis Campbell accusing Kim Campbell of keeping their father secluded from the rest of the family and possibly mishandling his finances. Campbell's youngest daughter Ashley defended her mother Kim in a Facebook post before Glen Campbell died: “My mother Kim has endured unspeakable heartache and has selflessly and lovingly cared for my dad through every step of his disease and continues to do so. She has never denied any of his children a visit, including Debby and Travis who see him regularly yet continue to spread malicious lies about her. They have visitation rights, so what else do they want? One answer: the limelight.” 
Whatever the truth of the situation, inheritance fights after the death of a loved one just magnify the heartache of the loss. Our lesson this week makes it clear that there is no confusion regarding the inheritance promised to God’s children. “Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden,” explains Romans 9:18. As harsh as that sounds, it leaves no room for confusion about who inherits what. Paul expounds on God’s mercy, however, when he quotes Hosea in Romans 9:25, “I will call them ‘my people' who are not my people; and I will call her ‘my loved one’ who is not my loved one.” Even though we may not be natural children by birth, we can receive God’s mercy as His adopted children.
Unlike human family relationships, it’s not hard to confirm that our heavenly inheritance is sure. The good news of the gospel of Jesus, according to the first angel’s message of Revelation 14, is for “every nation, tribe, tongue and people.” This message is both instructional and invitational. All who accept the invitation can receive eternal life. The only requirement for us children of the promise to receive our inheritance is to claim that promise.