Ephesians 1:3-5. 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places… In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will.
We are blessed in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places. These are the blessings of Christ himself. What he has we have in him. And all of these blessings flow from God’s fierce love for us.
God really, really, loves us. Before anything else he loved us. Before creation. Before election. Before the incarnation or the crucifixion or the resurrection he loved us. Why? Because he did. He loves us because he loves us. Because he wants to – according to the purpose of his will.
God doesn’t just love us, he loves us with a purpose. A will. God’s love and God’s will collide in this phrase: he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ. Because God loves us he predestined us to be adopted. Because God always gets what he wills, we have been adopted as sons. And God’s love and God’s will collide in the person of Jesus Christ. Because we are in Christ we are loved. Because we are in Christ we are predestined (willed) to sonship.
What does this mean?
God’s love for us has a purpose. A destination. We are predestined. His love is not only a feeling or a sentiment. It’s a purpose. A path. A plan. A hope. And that purpose, path, plan, and hope for us is to be sons of God that have been conformed to Jesus THE Son of God.
Romans 8:29-30. 29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.
God’s love for us is personal. Christian, God has adopted us to himself. We are his possession and prize. This is what God has wanted for all of eternity – to make you his own. To join his life to yours.
You’ve chosen to love.
In adopting us God has brought us into his family and granted to us all the rights, privileges, and blessings of his family. This includes his very own life, his own character, his own love. How? By bringing us into his presence. When a child is adopted there is no denying that they still exhibit the attributes of their biological parents. But there is also this amazing phenomenon that occurs that adopted children take on the attributes of their adoptive parents. They are transformed by the presence of this new family. They become like their new parents. In the same way we too become like our adopted Dad (God) by being in his presence. And as we become like Dad we become like the only begotten Son, Jesus. We become what he is – holy and blameless.
We know people can make a baby biologically “by accident,” without necessarily wanting that baby. But I’ve never heard of an accidental adoption. To adopt is to love. To adopt is to will. To adopt is to predestine. To adopt is to say to a child “I have a place for you. You will be my son, my daughter. You will be one of us. And this will change your future forever.”
When it feels like your life doesn’t matter. When it seems like you’re never going to be anything but ordinary. When it becomes obvious that you will fail in your latest endeavor. When you can’t be the hero you want to be. When you’re not noticed, not appreciated, not all together, not “special.” Remember that you are the son of the King. You are the daughter of God. His very own. The one he created, lost, pursued to Hell and back, and then legally adopted to make sure that he would never lose you again. That’s your God. That’s your future. That’s your hope. That’s “to live is Christ.”