Most of us were born into a family and cannot imagine what it is like to be adopted. Due to my wife’s occupation, I have personally met a few families who have adopted children. It still amazes me how much love these families have for them.
Aside from the emotional bond that join these families together, there is also a legal aspect to the act of adoption. When an adoption order is passed by our court, the child’s legal ties with his biological parents are severed and the adoptive parents assume all rights, obligations and responsibilities for the care of the child. The adopted child now stands in the same legal position as a child born to them in lawful wedlock.
This picture of adoption is exactly what we experience when we receive the Holy Spirit. He is the Spirit of Adoption that makes us sons, so that we can cry to the Lord God, “Abba! Father!” (Romans 8:15).
The Scriptures tell us that before we were adopted, we belonged to the family of the devil (1 John 3:10). We were outside of Christ’s family and were on our way to being cast out of God’s presence forever. In justification, God gives us a right legal standing before Him, so that we are no longer under His wrath.
In adoption, He goes beyond this and embraces us as members of His own family! What love indeed has the Father given to us, that we should be called children of God! (John 1:12; 1 John 3:1–2)
We can now enjoy the privileges of our adoption. It has allowed us to speak to God and relate to Him as a good and loving Father. When we pray for forgiveness of sins as children of God, we are relating to God not as a judge, but as a Father. It becomes a prayer to restore our fellowship with Him that may have been broken because of sin (1 John 1:9; 3:19–22).
With this knowledge of adoption in mind, we can move forward in life without fear. We do not need to be anxious about our circumstances, but remain at peace because our Father in heaven will take care of us.
We should also begin to see members of our church as family and love them as family. The church is a family and not a gathering of individuals seeking their own interests.
Dn. Mervin Lin