the Fourth Week of Lent
Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary
This forms a most interesting word in Scripture, in the use that is made of it, in allusion to the state of adoption and grace, into which true believers are received by their union with Christ. They are said to be predestinated to the adoption of children. (Ephesians 1:5) And the purpose for which Christ is said to be made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law was, that they might receive the adoption of sons. (Galatians 4:4-5) The word adoption is borrowed from a custom well known among the Romans, under whose government Judea became a province, who adopted the children of strangers and acknowledged them for their own, when they themselves were childless. But though the term is applied to believers, from being openly adopted and acknowledged in the family of Christ, yet strictly and properly speaking, this is not done, because they were not of the family of Christ before; for in fact they always were; but it is done in a way of publickly confessing and acknowledging it. The Holy Ghost by the apostle is express to this purpose, when he saith, "And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, where by ye cry Abba! Father!" (Galatians 4:6) And all the Scriptures are express to confirm this most unquestionable truth. (Isaiah 44:3; Isa 59:21; Ezekiel 37:5-14; Zechariah 14:1-21) It is most blessed, when we consider the privileges of adoption, and know in ourselves that we are made, though grace, the happy partakers of it. By adoption, the children of God in Christ are brought out of the spirit of bondage into the glorious liberry of the sons of God. They are translated from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of God's dear Son. Hence they are regenerated, illuminated; justified, sanctified, and made partakers of grace here, to be made partakers of glory hereafter. Sweetly the Spirit witnesseth to their spirits, that they are the children of God. "And if children, saith the apostle, then heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ: if be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together." (Romans 8:16-17)
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Hawker, Robert D.D. Entry for 'Adoption'. Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance and Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​pmd/​a/adoption.html. London. 1828.