Being Adopted By God Himself
From My Notes by Pastor Ron Campbell
Paul starts his letter, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing” (Eph. 1:3)
God has given us every blessing. In Christ, God has done for us what we could never have done for ourselves, and He deserves all the glory for it.
One of the blessings God bestows on us in Christ is the blessing of adoption. We are freely established into God’s family and made God’s children. We are no longer strangers but members of the household of God.
In the book of Ephesians, we find there are several parts to our adoption. First, our new status is predestined. “He predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will” (Eph. 1:5). God Himself initiated our adoption, and the decision to make us His children was made before either we or the world existed. There is a purpose on the part of God to enlarge His family by bringing sinners like us into it. It is one thing for us human parents to decide to adopt someone who will fit into our families. However, God’s purpose is to adopt those who are the very opposite of Himself.
The second part is “to the praise of his glorious grace” (Eph. 1:6). Remember our adoption into God’s family is not something that gives a benefit to us, it is something that enhances the reputation of the God. All the praise is His. Our adoption comes out of His choice, and emphases His glory and praise. We did not deserve it and could not achieve it. But God, by His mercy, gives this blessing to us that He will be praised throughout endless ages of eternity.
A third part of our adoption is that it is “in Christ.” There is no spiritual blessing outside of Christ. But remember once we are in Him, there is no spiritual blessing that is not ours. The completeness of our adoption finds its center and its meaning in Jesus Christ.
So, how can we know that we have been adopted into the family of God? We must look to Jesus Christ. God has no central point upon which to secure our status as His adopted children except for what He has done in His Son. He sent His one and only Son into the world with the purpose of enlarging His family, so that many sons would come with Him into glory. Being adopted is to stand where Jesus has always stood, looking at God and calling Him “Abba.”
The final part is that we are adopted so that we will bear the family likeness. We are chosen to be holy and blameless (Eph. 1:4). These are the characteristics of God’s children. We are set apart to be “blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation” (Phil. 2:15). So… there can be no adoption without a transference of the family likeness and the implanting of a new impulse toward holiness and godliness.
I know of no better evidence of our adoption into God’s family, than to want, more than anything else in the world, to be more like our Father… our Daddy. After all He adopted us.