You might not realize it, but adoption is mentioned multiple times within the bible. Let’s take a look at a few of them.
According to recent figures from the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System, there are an estimated 130,000 children who are waiting to be adopted. That number seems completely high and like there is no way we can ever find that many families to take them, right? Wrong. There is an estimated amount of 309,000 Christian churches in the United States. So, if we did the math, that means we only need one family in ever 2.5 church to choose adoption. That number seems completely reasonable.
It doesn’t matter if you are a prospective adoptive parent or a birth family considering your options. The bible speaks to both sides about this beautiful and selfless gift that we call adoption.
1. Christianity and Adoption: First Adoption Story
It’s amazing that we actually get to see evidence of how God can use someone’s adoption story in the bible. The first incident that came to my mind takes us back to Exodos. If you have grown up in the church at all, I’m sure you are aware of the story of Moses. If you haven’t let me explain.
This story comes out of Exodus 2. During the time of Moses’ birth, the Pharaoh was concerned with how many male Hebrews were being born. To fix this “issue” he decided that all males need to be killed at birth. Well, Moses’s mother was not willing to do that. So, she hid her son for three months. When she couldn’t hide him anymore, she wrapped him in blankets and placed him in a basket. She placed the basket along the bank of the Nile river. Soon the Pharaoh’s daughter found him and took him in as her own.
Now, we would think that would end the story of Moses, but many of you know that is not true. Moses eventually saved the Hebrew slaves from the Pharaoh’s control. He frees the people that eventually become the lineage of Jesus.
Moses’s mother understood that even though she loved her little boy, she had to give him away. I’m sure this choice was heartbreaking for her, but she was able to put her child’s needs above her own. She had no idea at the time that this was all part of God’s ultimate plan for Moses’s life. He used Moses’s adoption story to change the world.
If you are an expectant parent and you are considering adoption, understand that you are in good company. This is not an easy decision and no matter what your circumstance is, adoption is a very selfless and loving act. You are trusting God to guide your child to the right family. Just like He did with Moses.
As a birth parent, you have a lot of options and things to take into consideration. There is no one right or wrong reason to adopt. If this seems like the path for you a great way to start is to speak to an adoption specialist who can help you go through the adoption process.
If you do choose adoption, you will then need to decide what that looks like for you. You can choose an open adoption, where you will have updates, visitation, and be a part of the child’s life. Simi-closed adoptions allow you to have updates and limited visitations. Usually, this is once a year or whatever is worked out between you and the adoptive parents. Closed adoptions mean there is no contact with the child until the child reaches the legal age.
If adoption seems like a path you are interested in taking, you can check out this adoption guide to better understand the process.
Many Christian agencies offer life-long counseling to help you deal with this decision and for anything that might come up later in life. The goal of these agencies is to make sure feel safe, secure, and prepared for this choice. If at any time you feel hesitant, speak to them about your concerns. Everyone involved wants to make sure you are taken care of just as much as your unborn child.
2. Christianity and Adoption: An Adoptive Father
Ok…for some of you this might feel like a little bit of a stretch but go with me for a moment. Another amazing example of adoption listed in the bible, the story of Joseph and Jesus.
If you look at any of the four gospels or have seen any church Christmas pageant, you know the story of Jesus’s birth. Mary was an unwed young pregnant mother and truthfully, she has always been one of the stars of this story. But if we stop and step back for a moment, we need to see what a major part Joseph played in the life of Jesus.
During that time, Mary would have been put to death if she became pregnant out of wedlock. The culture was just not open to women having sex before marriage. Which is actually still pretty common today. Anyway, so when Joseph found out she was pregnant he decided to give her grace and protect her. His plan was for them to marry and then he would divorce her in order for her to be safe. But an angel came to him in a dream and explain that Jesus was the son of God and that God chose Joseph and Mary to raise him.
Now, some might not believe this, but Joseph did have the chance to walk away. He was never forced to accept Jesus as his own. God simply presented the opportunity to Joseph and he chose adoption. He raised Jesus as his own and understood the importance of his calling. Even though Jesus was the Savior of the world, He still was human and needed a loving earthy father to raise him until He was ready to start His ministry.
Some of us plan for adoption. Making it our path from the very beginning. But for many others, adoption almost feels like it falls into our laps. I never imagined being able to adopt a child. I was always blinded by the high fees, the years it takes to be placed, and the disappointment that sometimes comes with the endless waiting. When my husband and I signed up to be foster parents, adoption was the furthest thing on our minds. But if we choose to not take the steps down that path, we would have never been blessed by our amazing, beautiful daughter.
If you are considering adoption, you might be feeling overwhelmed and unsure to even start. You can first check out this guide to begin your process. The most important step you need to make is to figure out what type of agency is best for you.
Private adoption agencies can cost anywhere from $30,000 to $50,000. This covers agency fees, medical and counseling services for the birth parent, and legal fees. Many families prefer to use private agencies because they have a lot more control over what children they are placed with. Some private agencies work specifically with Christian families to ensure that the children are being placed in God-loving homes. Many of those also offer lifelong counseling for the birth parent to properly deal with the loss of their parents.
County adoption agencies are far less financially burdensome. With a cost ranging from $500 to $1,000 to cover legal fees. Many families choose to use county agencies because of the roughly 400,000 children in the foster care system. When you adopt through foster care, it is important to keep in mind that every child who is part of the system has experienced trauma in one way or another. They were removed from their parents for multiple reasons and because of that, they need special love and attention. While some families are willing and able to take in children with struggles, others find that intimidating and overwhelming.
Lastly, you might consider international adoption. Many families are drawn to international adoption because they do not have to worry about running into the child’s biological family. Or the fact that on average, placement times are much shorter than the United States. Or maybe the main reason, because many children who are placed for adoption overseas are placed in harsh orphanages. The lack of medical or physical care received leaves these children vulnerable to lifelong issues.
International adoptions can range from $15,000 to $50,000 once you consider travel expenses, document fees, lawyer fees, and court fees. You can speak to your local agency to see if they work with international adoptions. You will need to make sure your agency is an approved agency to work with the specific country you are seeking. Check out this international adoption guide for more information.
3. Christianity and Adoption: We are all adopted.
Ephesians 1:4-5 tells us “For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love, He predestined us to be adopted as His sons and daughters through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will.”
Galatians 4:5 “…that we might receive adoption to sonship.”
Romans 8:15 – “You received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as His own children.”
When we are baptized, accept Jesus Christ as our savior and open our hearts to God, we become part of His family. Also, it means we are heirs to the throne. So, if we look back at Jewish culture during biblical times, being an heir was huge. Normally everything went to the oldest son and that was that. When that child died, the second son would then take over everything. The thought that multiple individuals would receive blessings was basically unheard of. But God wanted us to know that we will all celebrate with Him at His throne and that the death of Jesus paid our price.
Also, we can tie this to how we are reborn in Christ. During Roman culture, adoption looked a lot different than it does now. It was normally not children or infant, but grown men and teen boys. If adoption was approved, the adoptee would have all his debts forgiven. He would receive a new name and be entitled to all of his new father’s rights. A father could actually disown his own birth child, but the adoption could never be reversed.
When we are baptized, we are reborn. New creations and wiped clean. All our sins and debts are removed and God sees us for who we were meant to be. Every Christian is born a slave to sin. Through God’s grace, Jesus paid our price with His life so that we now can be filled by the Spirit.
Christianity and Adoption
Adoption is a calling and not something that should be taken lightly. It doesn’t matter if you are a birth parent, who is just trying to do the best for their child, or a prospective adopted parent who is trying to grow their family. Adoption affects every race, age, financial standings, and religion.
If you are considering adoption in any form, I suggest you connect with other families, do your research and see what path is right for you. You can check out Christian Adoptions for resources, stories, and guidance. There is also 24/7 adoption support services available for support, prayer, and advice.
I do not know why our daughter was put up for adoption. She was a safe surrender baby at our local hospital. Her birth parents signed away rights immediately after she was born. I don’t know what they believed or what their situation was. However, whether they knew it or not, they were putting their trust in God’s hands. He knew the plan He set forth for our daughter and we were simply the ones that were blessed enough to raise her.