But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of woman, born under the Law, to redeem those who were under the Law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. Galatians 4:4-5
Artyom is a confused seven-year-old boy.
Born in Russia, he was adopted by a family in the United States. After six months of living with his new family, they put him on a plane and sent him back to Russia.
His adopting family says Artyom was "mentally unstable."
The Russian doctors who examined him say there is nothing wrong with the lad.
The president of Russia says there is something wrong with the family who adopted Artyom. Indeed, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev says rejecting the child was a "monstrous deed ... not only immoral, but also against the law."
When I first read that story, I remembered what Paul wrote in Galatians. He said, "God sent forth His Son ... to redeem (us) ... so that we might receive adoption as sons."
Yes, our faith in the Savior results in our adoption into the family of faith. Because of what Jesus has done for us in Bethlehem, in Galilee, Judea, Samaria, and on Calvary's cross we have been given a new life.
Truly, Jesus did all things well, including giving up His life, so that we might be saved and adopted.
What saddens me is that we are spiritually unstable. We are part of God's family, but we keep on sinning -- that is -- we keep on doing the things we used to do when we lived with the family of humanity, which doesn't acknowledge Jesus.
It's a wonder God doesn't send us back.
But He doesn't. The Father's grace has Him forgiving us, loving us, encouraging, and supporting us. Because of Jesus' work, which was completed on the cross and revealed as having been accepted on resurrection Sunday, our Heavenly Father sends His Holy Spirit to help us who are adopted feel comfortable and fit into the family of faith.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, forgive me when I do not live as one of Your adopted children. Wipe away my sins and create a new heart within me. Make that heart give thanks for Jesus' work and sacrifice. Finally, let me be a living witness of how somebody in Your family lives. In Jesus' Name, I ask this. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries