What is adoption?


It is God’s goodness in receiving sinful rebels as his beloved children.

Adoption is a word you probably have heard before. Most often, people join a family by being born into it. The moment your mom gives birth to you, you’re immediately a full member of your family. In an adoption, a person who doesn't have a family who can care for them will be invited to become a member of a different family. And the moment they are adopted, they become just as much a member of their new family as the children who were born into it.

When we talk about adoption in the Bible, we aren’t talking about being made a member of a human family. Instead, it’s about becoming a son or daughter in God’s family! In John 1:12, we learn a special promise about what happens when we believe the good news of Jesus: “Yet to all who did receive him (Jesus), to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God. When we believe the good news of Jesus, we are adopted: we become a member of God’s forever family.

But what original family did we come from? Why did we need to be adopted in the first place? The answer is simple: sin! We were born law-breaking sinners, rebels who disobeyed God our King. In Ephesians 2:3, the Bible calls us “children of wrath,” children deserving God’s anger and punishment. And in John 8:44, Jesus told a group of sinners, “You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires.” We are born “children of wrath” and “children of the devil.” That doesn’t sound like a very happy family! Can you see now why sinners like you and me need to be adopted into a different one?

When we believe the good news, God adopts us into his family. He invites us to become a son or a daughter. We go from unruly rebels to his beloved children. This invitation isn’t something God will ever take back. He’s not waiting for us to stumble into sin so he can kick us out again. God’s family is our forever family!

Romans 8:38-39 makes it crystal clear – there’s nothing that can ever again separate us from the love of our Heavenly Father! Through this adoption, we are forever God’s children. And as his sons and daughters, we receive the blessings of being in God’s family. Of course, the greatest privilege of being a child of the King is the chance to enjoy eternal life in our Father’s forever kingdom!


+ What privileges do we enjoy because we are members of God’s family?

+ Read Romans 8:14-15. What does Paul tell us about adoption?


John 1:12; Eph. 1:5; Eph. 5:1; Gal. 4:7, 31; 1 John 3:1-3

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