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Adoption is an Option

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Adoption is an Option

Romans 8:14-17


A. Ever wish you could be adopted by some rich, powerful family?

1. Cabela’s

2. Disney

3. Gates

4. Robison

B. The English word ‘adoption’ literally means ‘to choose’

1. “To choose and bring into a certain relationship; specifically, to take into one’s own family by legal process and raise as one’s own child”

2. There are many wonderful parents who have decided to make adoption an option by willingly opening their homes and offering their love to those who desperately need that home and love.

3. These parents are following the example of God Himself.

C. God chose the nation of Israel to be His own possession.

1. “For you are a holy people to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for His own possession out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth. The Lord did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any of the peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but because the Lord loved you and kept the oath which He swore to your forefathers, the Lord brought you out by a mighty hand, and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt” (Deuteronomy 7:6-8).

2. God chose to bring the people of Israel

3. God exercised His option by adopting Israel into His family.

D. Paul draws on the concept of adoption in is letter to the Romans

1. Open your Bibles to Romans 8:14-17

2. To a Roman citizen, adoption carried a great deal of weight.

3. The advantages of adoption in first century Rome:

a. The adoptee lost all rights in his old family, and gained all the rights of a fully legitimate son in his new family – literally, he received a new father.

b. The adoptee became heir to his father’s estate. His rights were not affected even if other sons were born afterward…he was inalienably co-heir with them. Seven witnesses attested to this fact.

c. In law, the old life of the adoptee was completely wiped out. The adoptee was regarded as a new person entering into a new life with which the past had nothing to do.

d. In law, the adoptee was literally and absolutely the son of his new father.

E. Paul contrasts the idea of slavery with the idea of adoption.

1. “For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, Abba! Father!” (Romans 8:15).

2. Using the term ‘adoption’, Paul knew that the Romans would fully understand the impact of God’s choice.

I. As Christians, we must understand the advantages of God’s decision for adoption.

A. The first advantage - loss of all rights in our old family

1. The family headed by the father of all lies – Satan

2. We no longer have to fear the outcome of staying in his family

3. “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death” (Romans 8:1,2).

4. We have become a part of our new family – the family of God.

5. We are fully legitimate children, having received a new Father.

B. The second advantage - the unalienable inheritance that will be enjoyed

1. Heirs to the family estate

2. No matter how many ‘sons’ are added to the family, we will delight in the eternal life that has been freely offered to those who are obedient to our Father’s wishes.

3. The much needed assurance: “The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with Him” (Romans 8:16,17).

4. Our confident expectation (our hope) is based on what the Holy Spirit has taught through the word He revealed.

5. We will be glorified with Him, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ.

6. This is a beautiful and eternal advantage of our adoption as sons.

C. The third advantage - the complete disposal of the old life

1. As Christians, we enter into a new life, leaving behind, in the grave of baptism, the old self.

2. “And if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness” (Romans 8:10).

3. God chooses to forgive and forget all of our sin.

a. According to God’s justice, when one sins, that one deserves death.

b. However, based on the perfect sacrifice of His own Son, God has chosen to remove the death sentence because He is satisfied with substitutionary death of the Messiah.

c. The old life, saturated with sin, is effectively and completely removed.

d. “…knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, that our body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin” (Romans 6:6,7).

e. This is another reason to cry out “Abba! Father!”

D. The final advantage - we are literally and absolutely a son (or daughter) of our new Father

1. There is no such thing as a ‘second-class citizen’ in God’s family.

2. We all enjoy the same benefits, because we know that God “has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3).

3. We also look forward to the culmination of our adoption.

4. “And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body” (Romans 8:23).

5. Absolutely nothing can separate us from the love of God expressed in His choice to adopt us.

6. Paul assures the Christian that “we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us” (Romans 8:37).


A. The choice was God’s.

1. The choice was made before the foundation of the world

2. “…just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him” (Ephesians 1:4).

B. Adoption was an option.

1. God exercised His option

2. He chose you!

C. “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:15).

D. Our response to that choice will determine our eternal destiny.

1. Listen to His call

2. Obey His commands

3. Repent and be immersed for the forgiveness of your sins

4. You will then be a child of God with all the privileges that come with that distinction

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