August 11, 2017

“God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons” (Galatians 4:4-5).

God adopts. The Gospel is about adoption. Salvation’s story can’t be told apart from adoption. Christianity can’t happen without it. The Old Testament features an adopted leading man. Pharaoh’s daughter adopting Moses leads to the Hebrews ending up liberated. The New Testament also stars an adopted hero. Joseph adopting Jesus sets in motion sinners getting forgiven. Father Almighty offers His Son and adopts human beings for us to have a faith relationship with the Lord God and the hope of resurrection to everlasting life in His heavenly kingdom.

No wonder early Christians opened the world’s first orphanages. Psalm 68:5-6 proclaims God “Father of the fatherless and protector of widows. God settles the solitary in a home.” James 1:27 NIV describes “look[ing] after orphans and widows in their distress” as “[r]eligion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless.” Articles in this issue of LifeDate emphasize adoption’s importance. The blessings of adopting are plentiful: 

  • Adopting embodies God’s own self-sacrificial love and unconditional grace. He chooses for His own those who once did not belong.

  • Adopting rescues a child in need into a forever home and a better life (and sometimes also provides relief to the family of origin).

  • Adopting bestows the treasures and joys of a son/daughter (and sibling, grandchild, cousin, etc.) upon the receiving family: “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. … Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them!” (Psalm 127:3, 5).

  • Adopting enriches families even when not facing infertility and alongside their biological childbearing.

  • Adopting helps heal the hurts of a child feeling (often repeatedly) abandoned.

  • Adopting extends also to children older than infants (and not only as an alternative to abortion!). Many orphaned or fostered teenagers still want to become part of your household.

  • Adopting forges the deep and strong bonds of facing difficult challenges together.

  • Adopting connects hearts across cultures, ethnicities, and nationalities and forms unions from around the world.

  • Adopting enlists whole communities (especially congregations!) in support, cooperation, and fellowship.

  • Adopting speaks and shows the boundless preciousness of every human life—created, redeemed, and wanted forever by the Lord Himself!