The Riches OF GRACE
“hath appeared to all men.” Titus 2:11
Robert W. Reed
In this article we want to consider the subject of adoption. In the Bible adoption represents the position and privileges which we have being the sons of God. I am going to present an outline first; then we will follow it in the remainder of this article.
A. “Child” (teknon) beings born one:
1. How do I become a child of God?
2. What do I have as a child of God?
B. “Son” (huios) means some ship or position:
1. How do I become a son of God?
2. What do I have as a son of God?
Now, the word child as we have in our outline means born one, and it stresses the spiritual birth of the believer. To be a child of God is to be born into God’s family. According to the Galatians 3:26, we become a child of God by faith in Jesus Christ.
The Bible tells us in John 3:3 that a man must be born again. So, when a man or woman receives Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior they become a member of God’s family by being born into it (I Peter 1:23, James 1:18).
We also see in Titus 3:5 that the Bible clearly shows that those who are saved are regenerated. The word regenerated literally means to be born again. The Greek word for regeneration is palin (again), genesia (birth).
In the context, the washing and regeneration is by the word of God. So, I became, a child of God by the new birth. Now, I want to show briefly what we have as a child of God. To make it very plain and simple, “I have eternal life”. My inheritance now as a child of God is the kingdom of God. Only the saved enter into God’s kingdom and live eternally with Jesus Christ. According to I Corinthians 6:9, 15:51, and John 3:56, the unrighteous (lost people) cannot enter into the kingdom. If you are not a member of God’s family (Ephesians 2:9, 3:15) you will spend eternity with the devil and his angels. (Matthew 24:41, Revelation 20).
Now, in our second section we want to consider the idea of being a son. Being a child of God, we are also son, but the two phrases reveal two different things. The word son means more than just a born one. It shows the position we have in God’s family.
I am not just a child, but I am also considered a full grown son who has privileges now; and, I am considered an adult. This position is brought about by adoption. The word adoption means: the placing as a son (that is, a full-grown son). Our modern day adoption is not the same as the Bible adoption. Our modern term is the taking of a stranger into a family and declaring him to be a son. Even though this is true, it is still not a Bible concept.
In the Bible, adoption is the taking of a child already in a family and declaring him to be of full age with rights and privileges. This is brought out very clearly in Galatians 4:7, in using Israel and the law as an example The Jew under the law was considered as a child that differed nothing from a servant in bondage. They are under tutors and governors until the appointed time which off course had to do with Jesus Christ coming and redeeming them from a law.
All of this was true also in a Hebrew boys life. There came a time of the adoption proceedings took place and the boy was publicly declared to be the father’s son and heir. This time was appointed by the father and prior to this time, the boy differed nothing from a servant even though “he is Lord of all”.
One example of this is in the story in Genesis 24, where Eliezer has charge over Abraham’s possessions and not Isaac, even though Issa said was a heir of all that Abraham had. Another good illustration of this truth is found in the story of the prodigal son in Luke 15. The younger son asked his father to give him his portion of goods that falleth to him. I believe that the son had become of age and asked his father for his inheritance that would be his when the adoption would take place.
In looking back to our position, God recognizes us who are saved as full grown sons in which we receive the privileges and also the responsibilities. In Romans 8:17, we are considered to be joint heirs with Jesus Christ and, of course, this means that we are co-sharers with him. Also in Romans 8:15 the Bible is clear that we have received the Spirit of adoption and we cry, “Abba” Father, which is the word used by Jesus Christ in Mark 14:35. The word “Abba” shows a true relationship between a father and a son.
My purpose in this article is that we might be able to appreciate our position in Christ Jesus as sons of God. I am not only an heir of God, but I am a joint-heir with Jesus Christ. In time past, adoption pertained to Israel only (Romans 9:4). But now in the church age, we Gentiles get in on the blessings of God by faith in Jesus Christ who died for our sins, was buried and raised again for our justification. Grace be with you, Amen.
“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” Acts 16:31
Victory Baptist Church
Pastor Robert W. Reed
14473 Bellingrath Road
P.O. Box 257
Coden, Alabama 36523