Tolle Lege: Adopted for Life

Adopted for LifeReadability:  1

Length:  217 pgs

Author:  Russell D. Moore

Bethany and I have known for some time that we wanted to adopt children at some point.  When Mark (Bethany’s brother) and Marla adopted Kylee I think we were graciously infected.  The gospel is contagious when lived out.  Still I never thought through the deep gospel implications until watching the video posted below by John Piper.  After reading Russell Moore’s Adopted for Life I no longer simply want to adopt, I am compelled to adopt.  This is among my favorite books of the year.  I pray you will read it, whether or not you are contemplating adoption.  As Christians we all should be ardent advocates of adoption.

Whenever I told people I was working on a book on adoption, they’s often say something along the lines of, “Great.  So is the book about the doctrine of adoption or, you know, real adoption?”…

As soon as you peer into the truth of one aspect, you fall headlong into the truth of the other and vice versa.  That’s because it’s the way the gospel is.  Jesus reconciles us to God and to each other.  As we love God, we love our neighbor: as we love our neighbor, we love our God.  We believe Jesus in heavenly things – our adoption in Christ; so we follow him in earthly things – the adoption of children.  Without the theological aspect, the emphasis on adoption too easily is seen as mere charity.  Without the missional aspect, the doctrine of adoption too easily is seen as mere metaphor.

The gospel of Jesus Christ means that our families and churches ought to be at the forefront of the adoption of orphan close to home and around the world.  As we become more attuned to the gospel, we’ll have more of a burden for orphans.  As we become more adoption friendly, we’ll better understand the gospel.

Whether our background is Norwegian or Haitian or Indonesian, if we are united to Christ, our family genealogy is found not primarily in the front pages of our dusty old family Bible but inside its pages, in the first chapter of the Gospel of Matthew.

Our son Jonah was born three and a half weeks premature, but we don’t think of him as our “premature baby.” We don’t introduce our children Benjamin, Timothy, and Samuel and then say, “Here’s our premature son Jonah.”  Jonah is just Jonah.  He was premature, yes, and that’s part of his story.  But it doesn’t define who he is.  The same is true of those who came into our family by adoption.  Adopted is a past tense verb, not an adjective.

One thought on “Tolle Lege: Adopted for Life”

  1. Josh: Thanks for sharing this. I know Marla and Bethany have talked several times. When we adopted I think it was at first just a selfish thing to want to have children. But oh how the soverignty of God is alive and well within this adventure. We have, through many encounters with scriptures, books and videos as you have linked, been shown the power of the gospel through adoption. We love to share our story but now we love to share it with the focus being on how this is such a picture of how God has adopted us as His. Very excited for you!


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