Awaiting our Adoption – Romans 8:23-27

Even the believers look forward to their redemption, knowing that they have not been fully glorified at this point in their lives. Paul refers to himself and his Christian readers as the “firstfruits of the Spirit” (v. 22-23). This could refer to the first people who have received the Holy Spirit since the New Age has begun. For those of us living “between the ages” we are the early part of the harvest which will be fully seen only when the kingdom finally arrives.

Image result for stuart littleIt is clear from the book of Romans that Christ’s death on the cross has full we purchased salvation, and that those who are in Christ are justified, and experience peace with God at the present time. However we have yet to be glorified. So by describing the Christians as “first fruit” he calls to mind the fact that the first fruit of the harvest is only a foreshadowing, or a sample of the harvest to come

Paul returns to adoption as a metaphor for salvation. One can be adopted legally as a child of God, but until we are glorified in the future resurrection, we are not fully adopted into the family. Although we are the legal heirs, we have not yet come into our inheritance. By way of analogy, a child may inherit millions of dollars in a trust fund, but because of the terms of the will they do not have full access to their inheritance until they turn twenty-one. But the child may have access to some of the inheritance, an allowance for living expenses managed, etc.

There is therefore a certainty in our hope of a full inheritance in in the future when we experience resurrection and glorification. Legally we are the heirs, but we are not actually in possession of the full inheritance at this point in time. But are there elements of that future inheritance we have now, as adopted children of God? What are these benefits?

10 thoughts on “Awaiting our Adoption – Romans 8:23-27

  1. As adopted children of God we are promised our inheritance in the eternal and we have been given things for the present as well. We not only have eternal security 8:30-39 but we have been given the Holy Spirit of adoption (8:14-15) and we have been “given gifts that differ” as Paul says in Rom.12:3-8. God has already given us also his most precious gift, his son, so he also gives us “all things” meaning that we wont always get everything we want, but God knows exactly what we need and he gives us his blessings in his time.

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  2. One of the benefits we have as adopted children of God is that we have come into relationship with a Father who comforts us in our distresses. 2 Corinthians 1:3-7 explains how we “share the sufferings of Christ, so also our comforts abounds through Christ”. Everyone has struggles. Everyone has conflict. Everyone has problems. But a believer, through a relationship with Christ, can be comforted in trials, and have joy through the realization that we will one day be glorified in Him.

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  3. When I was kid, on Christmas Eve my siblings and I could open one present each. It was little foretaste to what was to come the next morning. In the same way, as God’s children, there are some “presents” that we receive before Jesus comes back. One of these is a closer relationship with our Father. Like a royal family has full access to speak freely to their family members, so is it between us and God. (Eph. 3:12) Before we were declared righteous and therefore justified, we could not approach God so freely. However, because we have been adopted into His household, we can dialogue constantly with Jesus our King. Another perk we have because of God’s adoption of us as children is the absence of condemnation. (Romans 8:1) Children tend to disobey their parents and get themselves into trouble. In the case with God our Father, His word corrects us and He continues to accept us (Romans 15:7) in spite of our disobedience.

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  4. The adoption metaphor that Paul uses is very powerful because it personally connects us as children of God. I believe one of the benefits of being an adopted child of God is the fact that Christ is our brother! We all know that big brothers cover their little siblings’ backs, and Christ is no different. Since we are family, Christ will always be there for us. Another way to look at this topic was the courtroom metaphor that we discussed in class. In our life, God is the judge and Christ (his son) is the defense attorney, how could we ever lose a case? Just like God is our father and Christ is our brother, we are in good hands. Although, there are some stipulations since we are not fully adopted into the family, like you stated in the blog, “we are legal heirs, we have not yet come into our inheritance.” We still need to give the family a good name, and then show everyone that we encounter how amazing our family is. Moo puts it this way: “As heirs of God, we are destined for the glory that is particularly his. In order to attain that glory, however, we must walk the same road that our forerunner, Christ, walked” (Moo, 136).

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  5. Steward little is a great illustration of our adoption into Christ’s family. Just as he in no way fits in a human house and family, we (Gentiles) do not fit or belong in Christ’s family. God is perfect and we are the complete opposite, yet He chose to adopt us, accept us as His children because He loves us. We discussed in class about picturing God as our judge in a courtroom and Christ as our defense attorney. If you look at it that way, no matter what sin or terrible thing you did, you would never lose because He is willing to forgive and forget the sins you have committed and will commit. That is powerful! On page 2796, Moo states: “God adopts people from the world and puts them in a new relationship to Himself.” Although we have not yet been given all tat God has promised to give us, we can live with a hope and reassurance that He will hold his promise and that we will receive our inheritance. So many people look forward to the earthly inheritance they will receive from their parents or grandparents. There is a sense of anticipation and excitement for such an inheritance, but in the end that kind of inheritance will not last. God’s inheritance and promise however does last for eternity and is far greater than anything we could ever imagine. If we could only learn to trust and rest in His timing and plan, there would be so much more peace and joy in our lives.

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  6. One of the things we have been given in our life on earth as adopted children of God is a closer relationship with our heavenly Father. Because we have a closer relationship with God, we have the almighty creator of the universe on our side. In Romans 8:31 it says, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” The benefit we receive by being an adopted child of God is having the highest power in our corner. Also, as adopted children of God, we are no longer on a path that leads to slavery to fear (Moo, 120). Yes we will face trials and suffering in our lives, but because of our relationship with God we may call out to Him and He will provide comfort when we feel as though our lives are falling apart. The benefit we receive is being able to experience the greatest of loves.

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  7. It definitely gives us hope for the future, to help us get through the difficult seasons in life, when we know how wonderful it will be when Jesus comes and know the promises he has made to us. The blessings we receive in this life cannot even compare to what we will receive in heaven. I like your analogy of the trust fund; it makes a lot of sense and is a good way to look at it in a way that is very understandable. There are definitely elements of that future inheritance that we have now, because of what Jesus has done for us. Some of these benefits include Jesus’ gift to us of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8). We now live in the Spirit, not in the flesh (Rom. 8:2-6). Paul says in 2 Cor. 10:3-5, which echoes some of his thoughts seen in Romans, “For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh…we destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take captive every thought to obey Christ”. And Jesus says in John 14:12 that “…whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do, and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.” Another benefit is the blessings and gifts God has given us in this life, such as our talents and abilities and our spiritual gifts. We have also been given authority over all living creatures, including spiritual beings (Luke 10:19, Romans 8:38). I like Rom. 15:13, which tells us to trust in him so that we may “overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

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  8. God has adopted very child he has created into his family. God is able to take care of us and teach us. Even though it seems that God is far away and not with us at times we are still able to reach out to him and be able to feel his presence. God is always available to us; we just have to make the decision to accept him into our life. God already loved us before we were even born. God already sent Jesus to pay the price for all of our sins, we as Christians have to make the decision to accept and follow Jesus. For me, he thought we are adopted by Christ into his family to me seems very comforting and has a sense of security. I find it comforting because I understand that no matter what I do God will always love me. On Earth we get the feeling that after we make a decision or do something wrong somebody doesn’t love us anymore; which is the worst feeling ever. But with God we will never have that feeling. God loves us no matter what, even though God loves that doesn’t give us the right to do what we want.

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  9. Even though the inheritance hasn’t fully been given, we still have the Holy Spirit. Often times I think we limit the power of the Holy Spirit by doubting. We so often ask God for strength and wisdom but we lack the faith to receive it, as James talks about in James 1:6-8. I would agree, we do have some kind of an allowance. Another aspect, we no longer are slaves to sin. Through the Holy Spirit we are able to overcome the power of sin and chose righteousness. Obviously, the allowance we receive is the Holy Spirit. “The Spirit, of course, continues to be a dominant element in Paul’s argument” (Moo 120). The benefits from the Spirit are vast. The Spirit intercedes on our behalf, because we do not know what to ask for. The Spirit helps us to understand God’s word. The Spirit is like a guide, letting you know where to turn, when to stop, and when you have done something wrong

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