Adopted as Sons

“In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ…” (Ephesians 1:5)

Bible Reading: Ephesians1:3-6

Here we are faced with one of the most glorious yet least comprehended blessings of being in Christ, namely, our adoption by God as his children. 

Paul tells us that “in love,” God “predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved” (Ephesians 1:5-6).

The idea of “predestination” carries with it the thought of future glory. In this case, the glory is connected with being sons of God, something that flows out of his loving heart and displays the gloriousness of his grace.

Who can plumb the depths of this blessing? We are familiar with it, and speak lightly of it, but do we appreciate even a fraction of what it means? To be one of God’s sons is to be claimed by him as part of his family. The Father, Son and Spirit have eternally existed in a fellowship of love, three distinct persons within the one Godhead. To be called “sons of God” is to be owned as being part of that holy society – not divine in nature, but nevertheless, part of that holy and heavenly community.

This blessing, the Apostle John tells us, is something true of us now. “See what kind of love the Father has given to us”, he says, “that we should be called children of God, and so we are… Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:1-2).

Paul also hints at a greater glory awaiting us as God’s children when he speaks of the creation eagerly waiting to be freed from its bondage to corruption and obtain “the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:21). It is not only the creation that groans as it waits for this, he continues, “but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies” (v. 23). Clearly, there is a coming day when our sonship will enter into its full glory.

One of my favourite verses in this regard is found in Hebrews 2:10. There, the writer says, “For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering.” There you have it! What is God doing in Christ? He is “bringing many sons to glory!” That is our status, and that is our destiny.

How deeply this should affect us. If only we knew the Father heart of God toward us as his children, it would change our lives completely.  What love, what devotion, what security it would inspire!  

Closing Thoughts:

  • Do you think of yourself as being loved by God with the love of a Father?
  • Do you know both the comfort and fear that come from being one of God’s dear children?

– Andrew Young