Bible Lesson 47

ADOPTION
ROMANS 8:21-26

In this lesson, we want to involve ourselves in the doctrine of adoption, which speaks of those who are truly saved becoming the children of God. Strangely, as I have researched the Bible and read theologians like, A.A. Hodge, James P. Boyce, Chafer, Robertson, and others I do not find where there has been a lot of development of this important doctrine at all.

I know from years of preaching and hearing and reading other preachers, I have only heard the very lightest and uninformed ideas of what adoption truly is and when it occurs. We will stick with the revelation of God, the Bible, as we seek to understand this grand and gracious doctrine as it is explained by the Inspired Scriptures.

First, we know that there are many today who have been fooled into believing that their church membership has saved them and entitled them to the many wonderful blessings of being born again by God. That has to be understood, and let me state right here and right now, that in no way keeps you who have been fooled, from being saved. I tell you on the authority of the Word of God, the Inspired Word of God, the Bible, that you are not barred from true salvation by anything except disobedience and rebellion.

We are not allowed the option of being saved in any way but by the faith in the blood of Jesus Christ. If you can believe that Jesus? blood is all that it takes to save you and you submit and commit yourselves to the Lordship of Christ, you can be saved. You must be drawn by the Father to His Son Jesus Christ (John 6:44). This is a call that will always be answered.

We must never imagine that we can resist the call of God to come to His Son Jesus Christ. We can and do many times fail to answer the general call of preaching, but that is not God calling but man calling. Only those whom God elected before the foundation of the World, will ever come, but it is always at the call of God on the soul of man.

Never imagine that you can ignore the call to come to Christ from the One who spoke and the worlds and all we know came into being. The genesis of adoption begins before the foundation of the world. In eternity past, God elected a particular people, from every nation, tongue, and tribe, to be the people of Christ. Election occurred in eternity; but salvation as we know it, that being born again, occurs in time here on the earth.

What I am opening this lesson with, the truth about real salvation is crucial; because unless you are truly saved, have been created in Christ Jesus, and have evidence of that new creature that comes out of real salvation, then you will not ever be adopted, and you will spend your eternity in hell.

That’s not what I desire or what I say, it is what God has decreed (See Ephesians 2:1-10; 2nd Corinthians 5:17).
Please don’t take me to be your enemy, simply because I tell you the absolute truth. Sometimes people do get their feelings hurt because I preach “Thus saith the Lord”.

I had a dear old sister say to me many years ago that I had hurt her feelings. She said she had been going to church all of her life and she was well into her eighty’s, and she had never heard what I preached. What I had preached that day was John 14:21-24, and in those verses, Jesus was speaking to His disciples; and Jesus said that the only people that He loves are those who know His commandments and keep them. I’m sure that she had heard thousands of sermons and nobody had ever loved her enough to tell her the truth!

I loved her enough to tell her that she would get over having her feelings hurt, but she would never get over the condemnation of God. Jesus Christ said that it is the truth that will set us free, so, not, to tell the truth, is tantamount to leading a person away from God. I’ve said all that to say this the first step in our salvation is to know that we have seen ourselves as God sees us, depraved, blind, undone and under God’s wrath, then we must know that we need that no one but Christ can fill for us. That all comes only as God calls us out of the world and grants us Grace and Faith. Salvation, once begun, is always perfected by God who is the Savior (Philippians 1:6); however, the Bible teaches us that salvation is progressive.

We are saved when God regenerates us by His Holy Spirit, we are being saved as the Holy Spirit sanctifies us and brings us to maturity, and we will finally be saved when we see Jesus Christ and we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. Remember, only those who have been drawn to Christ and the Cross will be saved; but once saved, we are saved forever. Our progression in Salvation is not dependent upon us, it is generated by God Himself. The Holy Spirit teaches us and convinces us to cooperate with God but the power of God is at play and all who are saved will always be saved. Our salvation and its foundation of faith is a gift from God, because of His great Grace, and what kind of God would give us eternal life and then take it away for any reason.

We can look at First Peter 1:3-5, and we find there the big fisherman, Peter, under the inspiration of God and he says, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time”.

That should comfort us and give us great joy to know that it isn’t some other man, whether potentate or king or rich man, that guarantees our inheritance in heaven?..it is our Triune God, Father, Son Jesus Christ, and Holy Spirit, who possess all of the power in heaven and earth, so we do not have to be concerned. We do have to be circumspect, and we are to be aware and awake and focused upon our hope who is Christ (See Ephesians 5:14-20). Those who are called out by God will have a willing mind (work of the Holy Spirit), and they will yield to the urgings of the Holy Spirit (See Philippians 2:13).
We always have to remember that our God is Omniscient, He knows everything because He decreed everything.

He calls us in salvation with a purpose, and Romans 8:28 tells us what that purpose is. That verse of scripture says, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He did foreknow (love), He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover, whom He did predestinate, them He also called: and whom He called, them He also justified: and whom He justified, them He also glorified”. God does it all with us being submissive to His leading.

In Romans 8:30, which we just quoted above, the word glorified speaks of oneness with God, and that is our adoption as His children. We are not God’s clients we are God’s children. Because God elected a particular person before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4) we have always been saved because in the mind of God nothing changes. When we were dead in trespass and sin we were saved in the mind of God, and when we were saved (in time) we were made to sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 2:6).

When we fail to know how all-powerful and all-knowing, and glorious our God is, we cloud the majesty of all that occurred to us before the foundation of the world and what is happening and will happen in us, and to us, as we continue in salvation to glorification. I believe that adoption is sure but that salvation, which is all of God, is a programmed process that will occur when we are resurrected and given that new body, which is fitted for heaven.

We are saved forever the moment that we truly believe and we are sealed with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13); we are saved from the power and penalty of sin at that moment; however, we still live in a world that is filled with sin and darkness and as the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ and God all work in our sanctification, we run that race toward the time that we will see Christ as He is, and we shall be like Him. While we live here on the earth our fleshly bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit but that temple will one day be dissolved and then we will have a new body or building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in heaven. That’s when we are adopted into the family of God.

While we live on the earth we have a longing desire to be in our final destination, heaven; and the bible speaks of our groaning along with the rest of creation, for the perfecting of God’s creation. You see, when Adam and Eve sinned in the garden they not only damaged themselves but they caused the earth to be cursed, (See Genesis 3:17). What a wonderful day we have to look forward to, that is if we are truly saved; because in that time, we will be released from the presence of sin to live forever in the presence of perfection.
We have the first-fruits of the Spirit, (Galatians 5:22-23)but we groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.

That is the time when not just our physical bodies will be redeemed, but everything that was affected by Adam’s fall will be brought back to God’s design. We who are saved have nothing to fear of death, it has no sting for the truly saved, and it has no victory over the soul. Many times I have used those verses in First Corinthians chapter 15, verses 51-58, that speak to us about the dead and the grave. We are told in verse 53, that this corruptible body that we die with must put on corruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

Death is swallowed up in victory! Our Victory is in Jesus Christ and His blood which has been applied by the Holy Spirit to our lives in the forgiveness of our sin. Those who are saved will press toward the mark of the prize of the high calling of God in Jesus Christ; and even while we walk in this sinful world, our names are written down in heaven, and Christ is there and in the eternal mind of God, we are already living there because of His Sovereign choice (See Philippians 4:20-21).

We are already locked-in to heaven and nothing can change that. We are already Sons of God, but we do not know what we will finally look like, but we do know that we will be like Christ (1st John 3:2-3). These are truths that you can write down and know that they will come to pass if you are truly saved, born again, and obedient to God.
You were saved before the world was created, you were loved by God unconditionally before the foundation of the world.

You were called by God’s Spirit from death to life, you are indwelled by the Holy Spirit, and you are the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus, and you are in Christ. Everything in your salvation was of God and He does not ever save anyone and then leave them beside the road, so to speak, to do the best that they can do.

No indeed, Jesus Christ when He ascended up on high after His resurrection gave us good gifts, in that He gave some apostles; and some prophets, and some, evangelists; and some pastors and teachers. These all assist the Spirit in His teaching and leading duties (Ephesians 4:10-15).

God even warns us throughout the Bible to strive to grow in our faith and our duty to obey and not be fooled by those who preach another gospel (Colossians 2:6-15; 2nd Thessalonians 2:1-12). What about you today? Are you ready to meet the death angel and to bet your eternity (in heaven or hell) on what your life is like right now? We never know when the Lord will call us, but we all know that death comes to everyone.

None of us can escape deciding to learn about God and how to please God and about God’s Gracious gifts of faith; if you decide not to decide, you have decided against God and there is no hope for you. We are living in an age where we have left the old paths of our religion. God is calling us back to the Word of God the Bible, and back to what He has clearly shown us to be the best route for us to take.

Jeremiah chapter 6 and verse 16 gives us direction from God to “Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is a good way, and walk therein, and you shall find rest for your soul”. Do not be like the nation of Judah, who refused to obey.

Remember, we are not saved by how we feel about ourselves or what we like to believe. We are saved by facts that are given in the Word of God, so if you are serious about your eternal soul, begin to study and agonize over your sinfulness and cry out to God to save you. God adopts those whom He saves, so it is the most worthwhile effort you will ever undertake.

Until next time,

may God bless and keep you

This is Bro. Bob