February 29, 2012 by greenhouse04
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!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs–heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
If we have the Spirit and are led by Him, we are children of God through adoption. God has even given us His Spirit, by whom we feel and know that we truly are His children, even though at times we are tempted to behave like our old father, Satan. And He has truly and completely adopted us, seen in the fact that we are even now His heirs along with Christ, the only begotten (“biological?”) Son of God.
Later in this chapter we are told that absolutely nothing can separate us from the love of God. He is the adoptive Father who chose us, paid for us, patiently and tenderly drew us, gave us a new name and nature, made us heirs, is preparing a “forever home” for us, and who will NEVER abandon us!
They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen. But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For not all who are descended from Israel belong to Israel, and not all are children of Abraham because they are his offspring, but “Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.” This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring.
For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree, do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you.
Then you will say, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.”
To the Israelites belong the adoption. They were also, like the Gentile believers, at one time adopted. Only Jesus was never adopted.
Now the Israelites are the flesh relatives of Christ. However, not all who are offspring of Abraham are his children. Only those called by God and made His child by His mercy are His children.
Everyone – Jew or Gentile – who calls on the Name of the Lord will be saved. For this reason, in chapter 11, Gentile believers are described as being grafted in. They (we) were wild branches grafted into the nourishing root. We are no better than the “natural” branches (the Jews – who, remember, were still originally adopted themselves!), but we have full access to the nourishment of the root and are heirs along with them! Verse 24 is a beautiful picture of adoption: … you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree…
Adoption brings people together who, by nature, are not related, and grafts them in to one tree. That’s God’s family, and that’s the Green family!