Romans 8:14-15. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
Union with Christ IS sonship. Those who believe in Christ are united to Christ. Those who are united to Christ are children of God. Why? Because we have been given the Spirit of Adoption.
The Spirit of Adoption is a proper noun. The Holy Spirit (God) is the Spirit of Adoption.
Adoption. I was talking to someone yesterday (well intentioned), and the subject of their adopted grandchildren and some of their struggles came up. This person said something to this effect – “adoption is hard because you never know what you’re going to get.” This made me start to think about whether or not they thought adoption was worth it. Is it worth it to adopt? Is the hardship worth it? Is the sacrifice worth it?
Today I ran into this on the internet: Did you consent to being born? Why one man is suing his parents for giving birth to him.
Raphael Samuel is an anti-natalist that is suing his parents for giving birth to him. Anti-natalism is an anti-birth movement that believes that since the child had no say in whether or not they were born their rights have been violated. The primary premise is that life is suffering and therefore not worth living. And as parents you had no right to bring your child into this suffering without their consent. Therefore we owe our parents nothing, and rather, they owe us for the pain and suffering they have caused in our lives.
“I wish I was never born.” Who hasn’t yelled this at their parents at some point? If this wasn’t actually a very disturbing and anti-God movement, it would be almost comical.
Anti-natalism is asking the same question about birth that my own mind asked about adoption – is it worth it? Is it worth the pain? Is it worth the suffering? Is it worth the broken hearts? But they are flipping it and asking the question from the perspective of the child – is it worth it to be born? To be adopted?
What almost every parent has said, whether they have adopted or given birth, is that YES it is worth it. The risk of suffering is worth the payoff of love. God is our great father. He is the greatest parent ever. And he too says IT IS WORTH IT. YOU ARE WORTH IT.
God in no way considers the suffering to have overshadowed the glory of love. He in no way considers the parent-child bond to be a violation of rights. He in no way considers our birth or adoption as a form of oppressive slavery. Quite the opposite. The Holy Spirit is not the spirit of slavery unto fear. The remedy for fear and slavery IS our adoption. God has chosen to love us. He has chosen to birth us AND adopt us. We are doubly loved. And perfect love casts out all fear.
Yes, it will be hard. Yes, there will be sorrow. Yes, there will be pain. Yes, there will be rejection and ingratitude (like the anti-natalists). But in the end it’s worth it to him to risk his heart for love. For you. He believed this so much that he gave his life for us. Our new birth and our adoption came at great cost to God. It came at great cost to Christ. Not only did he suffer for it, die for it, take on sin for it, he also has agreed to share his inheritance with millions and millions of brothers and sisters. But to God this is all worth it! Because love is worth it. We are worth it. He is worth it. The family of God is worth it.
Is it worth it to you? Would a new birth be worth it? Would adoption into God’s family be worth it?
I’m not sure where you’re coming from today. Maybe you’ve never felt like your parents said “it’s worth it.” Maybe they acted like parenting was more of a bother than a glorious privilege. Maybe you’re kind of like the anti-natalists. Maybe you don’t feel like your own life has been worth it. Maybe there is a small part (or a big part) of you that wishes you were never born.
Take hold of hope today. Take hold of love. The kind of love that would adopt slaves like us and make us sons. “To live is Christ” makes it all worth it. Do you believe this?