I have been blessed to study the book of Romans in depth this year through BSF on Tuesdays mornings. We dig and dig each week into a handful of verses. We wrestle with each verse and let God speak to us. What a gift! Romans is a difficult and wonderful book! Either because it's so great, or because I am not "getting" it enough, God thought I needed more Romans. My husband and I just joined a Bible study on... Romans! It is using a book by Timothy Keller and so far it has also been challenging and beautiful.
I have been struck lately with the truth that we are Adopted as God's Children. I am a Child of God. If you are a believer, then you, too, are a Child of God.
Adoption is quite the word.
Last December I sat the courtroom for another hearing for our foster daughter's case. But this one was not just another hearing. It was her "best case" hearing. Basically, our agency was laying out evidence to the judge that our daughter's "best case" was to be adopted by us-- her foster family who has loved and cared for her most of the years of her life. It was gut wrenching and sacred. I am not "allowed" to speak in court, but I sobbed silently in the last row as the judge declared my girl's standing and placement to be "best" with my husband and me. She has been ours all along, but with this declaration she becomes a full member of our family and she inherits full rights as our daughter!
It's the same for God.
God, our Father, sees each of us as His Child.
How does God feel when we let Him claim us as His daughter or son? Probably similar to how I felt in that courtroom!
We are His all along and then we can finally be freely loved by Him. We get the full benefits of being God's child.
"I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you." Jesus in John 14:18
Behave instead like God's very own children, adopted into His family-- calling Him Abba, Father. Romans 8:15
The Greek word for adoption here is a term referring to the full legal standing of an adopted male heir in Roman culture. God, our good, good Father adopts us. We will experience this fully One day (Romans 8:23), but it makes a difference in our life here and now as well. We are His. You are His. You are claimed and adopted. I am claimed. I have been declared His Child. What a gift! I get emotional when I let this truth sink in and when I live out of that place. How about you?
When the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” Galatians 4:4-6
There were legal realities God had to deal with. His own justice and law demanded that we be punished and excluded from his presence for our sins. Righteousness was required and punishment demanded. God had to satisfy his justice and his law in order to adopt sinners into his family. This he did by the life, death, and resurrection of his Son Jesus Christ.
God our Father cries in the courtroom, too.
It has been decided. We have been claimed. Let Him claim you. Let Him claim me.
I have Full Rights as His daughter! My prayer is that I sit in it and live from it. How about you?