Antiquarian Anabaptist

Apologetics from an Anabaptist perspective

Adopting and being adopted

Chris and I began to consider adoption about a year after we were married.  All we had ever known about adopting involved matching prospective parents with a child who most closely matched their interests and background.  Thus, when we began the application process we were expecting some kind of extensive background check.

We soon found out that this Children’s Aid Society had a different approach.  The first two points of their adoption policy stated: (1) To see himself as the adopting parent’s own child, as belonging to them, as being one of their family is basic to the child’s security and happiness.  (2) The key to the child’s sense of belonging is parents seeing themselves as his parents and him as their child.

To this end, they informed us that it was best if adoptive parents knew as little as possible about the backgrounds of the child they would adopt.  They told us that if we knew that one of the grandparents of the child had a certain weakness we would be sure to spot that weakness in the child we adopted and then assume it was hereditary and there was nothing we could do about it.  They told us, “The child you will adopt will be your child.  If he or she has a problem, it is your problem and up to you to deal with it as best you can.”

So we adopted a baby girl, knowing next to nothing about her birth parents and their background. I had a mental record of all the mistakes my parents had made and thought that I had all the answers to parenting.  Once we brought our girl home, I discovered that all my answers were to imaginary questions and there were real questions I had never even thought of.  We were not the world’s greatest parents, but that bit of direction given by the Children’s Aid Society put the ball squarely in our hands and we did our best to accept the responsibility.

We had friends who had adopted through the matching process and they never tired of telling all about the virtues of their boy’s grandparents.  We cringed for their boy’s sake and thanked God that we had not been led into that trap.

Jesus is the only begotten Son of God.  The rest of us are adopted sons and daughters.  Does our heavenly Father care what kind of people we used to be?  Does He care what kind of people our earthly mothers and fathers were?  I am so thankful the He doesn’t.  Consider the following verses:

John 1:12:  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

Romans 8:14-15:   For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.  For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.

2 Corinthians 5:17:  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Romans 2:11:  For there is no respect of persons with God.

Romans 9:8:  That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.

1 Peter 2:10: Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

Isaiah 63:16:  Doubtless thou art our father, though Abraham be ignorant of us, and Israel acknowledge us not: thou, O LORD, art our father, our redeemer; thy name is from everlasting.


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