The Family of God

by Iain Duguid

The theological doctrine of adoption is not one that readily comes to most people’s minds. It has often received short shrift in text books of systematic theology and in the church’s confessions, so it is little wonder that even people who can tell you clearly what they believe about justification and sanctification will often give you a blank look when you inquire about adoption. Yet properly understood, adoption is one of the most precious, heartwarming, and practical of all of our theological beliefs. It invites us to consider the amazing privilege that is ours that we should be called the children of God (1 John 3:1). Whereas justification rests primarily on a legal image and invites us to revel in the freedom that comes from our undeserved acquittal at the court of God’s judgment, adoption focuses our attention on a relational image and points us to the joy and assurance that comes from receiving a father who loves us and a family with whom we can enjoy our new freedom in Christ. Continue reading