"Anyone who welcomes a little child like this on My behalf welcomes Me, and anyone who welcomes Me welcomes not only Me but also My Father who sent Me."
Adoption displays God’s heart for the “fatherless”.
Throughout the scriptures, God displays a tender care and firm defense of those most helpless in society—widows and orphans. We tend to think of orphans as they were an hundred years ago… Children of deceased parents left to drift through the world on their own, or spend their childhood in an orphanage. While most children available for adoption today have living biological parents, they are no less orphans than those whose have lost their parents to death. Any child who is without a capable, willing, or loving adult to parent them is considered an orphan in God’s eyes, and under His divine protection. Although widows today are much more secure than they were in biblical times, children are as helpless and defenseless as they were then, and as much in need of honest, loving people to care for them. Take a look at the following scriptures and notice how passionately God cares about these children.
"You must not exploit a widow or an orphan. If you exploit them in any way and they cry out to me, then I will certainly hear their cry. My anger will blaze against you, and I will kill you with the sword. Then your wives will be widows and your children fatherless.”
“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.”
“He ensures that orphans and widows receive justice.”
“Father to the fatherless, defender of widows—this is God, whose dwelling is holy.”
“…don't take the land of defenseless orphans. For their Redeemer is strong; He Himself will bring their charges against you.”
Adoption exemplifies the covenant Christians have with God.When God made His covenant with Abraham in Genesis 17, it applied only to the “seed of Abraham”, namely, the Jews. God promised that they would be His own and that He would care for them and their descendants forever. God looked down on the “orphaned” Gentiles, left without a Heavenly Father to care for them, and had compassion. He sent Jesus to pay the “adoption fee” so that He could bring them into His family. Now, anyone who believes on Jesus is a child of Abraham, and heir to the covenant of God. God adopted us into His family when we accepted His offer.
“The real children of Abraham, then, are those who put their faith in God. What's more, the Scriptures looked forward to this time when God would declare the Gentiles to be righteous because of their faith. God proclaimed this good news to Abraham long ago when he said, ‘All nations will be blessed through you.’ So all who put their faith in Christ share the same blessing Abraham received because of his faith.”
“And now that you belong to Christ, you are the true children of Abraham. You are his heirs, and God's promise to Abraham belongs to you.”
Roman law stated that a man could lawfully disown his natural born children, but could never disown his Adopted ones. Adoption was a more permanent bond between parent and child than physically creating that child was. The bond that God created with us when He adopted us as His own is just as permanent. He will never disown us, though we can choose to disown Him.
Adoption is a beautiful picture of the love God has shown us.
To love that which was once considered “unloved” is the very nature of God. He loved and desired us, helpless and hopeless as we are, so much that He was willing to move heaven and earth to call us His own.
“Concerning the Gentiles, God says in the prophecy of Hosea, ’Those who were not my people, I will now call my people. And I will love those whom I did not love before.’ And, ‘Then, at the place where they were told, “You are not my people,” there they will be called “children of the living God.”’"
The end of the above verse is a strong spiritual display of the physical act of adoption. “At the place where they were told, ‘You are not my people…’ what a powerful picture of a child in need of adoption. They have been told by the world, possibly even by their own parents, that they belong to no one, and have no value, but, just as God did for us, an adoptive parent steps up and says “no, that is not true, you belong to me… you are my child, and I love you”. He took those who were not His own and made them so.
“God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.”
Adoption represents the new life we have in Christ.While once we lived hopeless and rejected, we now have the glorious privilege of being called “sons of God”. We have been given a new life in Christ—a life entitled to all the privileges of a child of God and the rights as His heirs. We have a life distinguished by justification and grace, and characterized by acceptance and unconditional love.
“But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.”
“All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by His great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, and we have a priceless inheritance.”
1 Peter 1:3-4
1 Peter 1:3-4
“For you have been born again, but not to a life that will quickly end. Your new life will last forever because it comes from the eternal, living word of God.”
1 Peter 1:23
1 Peter 1:23
“When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, He saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit. He generously poured out the Spirit upon us through Jesus Christ our Savior. Because of His grace He declared us righteous and gave us confidence that we will inherit eternal life."
Adoption has been used in the Bible to fulfill God’s plan.
Adoption has been used in the Bible to fulfill God’s plan.
Several characters in the Bible were products of adoption, providing us with a biblical example and godly perspective of God’s plan at work through adoption.
The first example of adoption is in the life of Moses. In order to save his life, Moses’ mother was forced to relinquish him to the care of Pharaoh’s daughter, who, moved with compassion by the plight of the three month old, adopted him as her own child, bestowing on him the rights of a prince of Egypt. Through this adoption, Moses was prepared by God to lead the Israelite people out of captivity. The education and leadership skills he gained by his time in the palace surpassed those he would have received with his Israelite family, and undoubtedly played a role in his ability to lead the Israelites for so many years with wisdom and justice.
Samuel was adopted by Eli the priest. We know this to be the case because Elkhanah, Samuel’s biological father, was not a member of the lineage of Aaron, a necessary qualification to become a priest. The fact that Samuel did eventually serve as priest meant that he musts have come into the line of Aaron by being adopted by Eli. Samuel’s position as priest was mightily used by God in the life of Kings Saul and David, as well as the lives of the Israelite people.
Another beautiful example of adoption was in the story of Hosea and the children of Gomer. Gomer was a prostitute who had several illegitimate children. God told the prophet Hosea to marry Gomer and adopt her children as his own, as a symbol of both Israel’s unfaithfulness to God and God’s unconditional love for His people.
Mephibosheth, the grandson of King Saul, was adopted by King David. Mephibosheth’s father was Jonathan, David’s closest friend. When Saul and Jonathan were killed in battle, Mephibosheth was just a young child. His nurse, fearing that David would put to death all the surviving members of Saul’s household, fled with the child, but in her haste, she dropped him, leaving him permanently crippled in both feet. David later searched for descendants of Jonathan and was told of Mephibosheth’s existence. David sent for the young man and adopted him, giving him a royal inheritance and granting him all the rights of one of the king’s sons. God displays to us in this story His habit of taking those who seem broken and undesirable and making them complete in Him.
Jesus Himself was adopted. He was not Joseph’s flesh and blood, but he adopted Him as his own, fulfilling the long established plan that the Savior would be a descendant of David, making His kingship legitimate. It is true that Mary was also in the line of David, but traditional lineage was traced through the father, and not the mother. The fact that Joseph was willing to adopt Jesus made Him an indisputable member of the house of David. Adoption was God’s plan for His own Son in His quest to redeem the world.