February 8, 2018
In recap of what we talked about at youth group last night, we started our venture through the book of Ephesians by talking a bit about it’s background, authorship, and purpose, as well as jumping into Ephesians 1:1-14. We focused our attention specifically on verse 4-5 in which Paul says “In love, [God] predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to he purpose of his will…” I asked the group what they knew about the process of adoption, in which they responded with “it’s really expensive, and there’s a big legal process that adoptees have to go through.” We took our time as we looked at the text to see exactly what God means when he says that he has adopted us as His sons and daughters.
First, we saw that Adoption Changes Our Identity. It’s true that in human adoption, a new birth certificate is produced, and a new name is given, and the adopted son or daughter literally joins the family. We talked about how God has made us his sons and daughters through adoption, giving us a new identity which Paul says is “holy and blameless before him.” This is such an important point for us, because it seems students are having an identity crisis now more than ever. Questions of gender, sexuality, etc are things that students deal with every day. This text assures us that our identity is found in Christ, as we’re made a part of new family.
Secondly, we saw that Adoption is Costly. Human adoption, on average, has a great monetary cost of over $40,000. There’s purpose for that, and most of it has to do with the legal requirements for adoption. In the same way, Paul writes “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses.” The payment for our adoption into the family of God was not a lot of money, it was the immeasurable cost of the blood of His son Jesus.
Thirdly, we saw that Adoption Assures our Prosperity. I made it clear that I was not talking about the prosperity gospel… but rather about the spiritual blessings that Paul talks about in verse 3, and the inheritance that is stored up for us talked about in verse 11. If our identity is wrapped up in Christ, as a son or daughter of God, we need not worry about our prosperity, as we are promised that he will take care of our every need, and he assures that with the giving of His own spirit.
It was a good night, and prompted some really great discussion in our small groups. I’m really looking forward to our time in Ephesians over the coming months! If you’ve ever got questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to reach out. I’d love to connect and hear your thoughts!