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Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches

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A stirring call to Christian families and churches to be a people who care for orphans, not just in word, but in deed. The gospel of Jesus Christ-the good news that through Jesus we have been adopted as sons and daughters into God's family-means that Christians ought to be at the forefront of the adoption of orphans in North America and around the world. Russell D. Moore doe A stirring call to Christian families and churches to be a people who care for orphans, not just in word, but in deed. The gospel of Jesus Christ-the good news that through Jesus we have been adopted as sons and daughters into God's family-means that Christians ought to be at the forefront of the adoption of orphans in North America and around the world. Russell D. Moore does not shy away from this call in Adopted for Life, a popular-level, practical manifesto for Christians to adopt children and to help equip other Christian families to do the same. He shows that adoption is not just about couples who want children-or who want more children. It is about an entire culture within evangelicalism, a culture that sees adoption as part of the Great Commission mandate and as a sign of the gospel itself. Moore, who adopted two boys from Russia and has spoken widely on the subject, writes for couples considering adoption, families who have adopted children, and pastors who wish to encourage adoption.


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A stirring call to Christian families and churches to be a people who care for orphans, not just in word, but in deed. The gospel of Jesus Christ-the good news that through Jesus we have been adopted as sons and daughters into God's family-means that Christians ought to be at the forefront of the adoption of orphans in North America and around the world. Russell D. Moore doe A stirring call to Christian families and churches to be a people who care for orphans, not just in word, but in deed. The gospel of Jesus Christ-the good news that through Jesus we have been adopted as sons and daughters into God's family-means that Christians ought to be at the forefront of the adoption of orphans in North America and around the world. Russell D. Moore does not shy away from this call in Adopted for Life, a popular-level, practical manifesto for Christians to adopt children and to help equip other Christian families to do the same. He shows that adoption is not just about couples who want children-or who want more children. It is about an entire culture within evangelicalism, a culture that sees adoption as part of the Great Commission mandate and as a sign of the gospel itself. Moore, who adopted two boys from Russia and has spoken widely on the subject, writes for couples considering adoption, families who have adopted children, and pastors who wish to encourage adoption.

30 review for Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jung Sun

    I'm not done with the book (Kindle version) yet, but I approached it with some caution. As an adoptee myself the merging of Christianity and adoption has been a struggle for me growing up. (Some times it still is) I'm not far into the book but Russell Moore made a statement that is most disturbing for any child born internationally/interracially. There seems to be an imbalance of spiritual nurturing and acknowledging the child's rights/needs for knowing, learning of their earthly background. Yes I'm not done with the book (Kindle version) yet, but I approached it with some caution. As an adoptee myself the merging of Christianity and adoption has been a struggle for me growing up. (Some times it still is) I'm not far into the book but Russell Moore made a statement that is most disturbing for any child born internationally/interracially. There seems to be an imbalance of spiritual nurturing and acknowledging the child's rights/needs for knowing, learning of their earthly background. Yes, earthly background/heritage is not as important as our identity in God, but it does contribute to the story of the child's life. God created the different countries and people, why downplay the importance of diversity as to deny the child's heritage? It concerns me that Moore is promoting such beliefs on the backbone of Christianity. As most may know religious establishments have long had influence in the adoption business, and not always in a most loving positive way. I was hoping for some progress in this book that is suppose to be the first to so excellently merge Christianity and adoption. Still reading, so there's hope in clarification. Update: I've finished it a few weeks ago. My review stands the same. Was not terribly impressed and didn't clarify the questions that came up. Seemed to perpetuate the idea that love is enough, acknowledging and accepting the reality that the child had a previous life before adoption is ignored, and as long as adoption is done in love (the right kind??) then adoption is the answer no matter what. Especially if it seems that God gave the go-ahead.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Julia

    This book, written by an adoptive father, makes the case that adoption should be a priority within the Christian community, not out of sentimentalism or charity, but because it is consistent with who we are. Moore argues from theological ideas that Christians should have a culture where adoption is normal and accepted, that more Christian families should consider adoption, and that our faith communities should be more proactive in supporting both birthmothers and families built in non-traditiona This book, written by an adoptive father, makes the case that adoption should be a priority within the Christian community, not out of sentimentalism or charity, but because it is consistent with who we are. Moore argues from theological ideas that Christians should have a culture where adoption is normal and accepted, that more Christian families should consider adoption, and that our faith communities should be more proactive in supporting both birthmothers and families built in non-traditional ways. As a Christian currently pursuing an adoption, I don't need much convincing on these points but this was a really enjoyable and moving read-- a nice combination of personal story, biblical exploration, and practical ideas. Some of the ways the author talked about parenting an adopted child did give me pause. I got the impression that he is dismissive of cultural connections being important for internationally or transracially adopted children; in his view, being part of a Christian home and having that identity trumps the need for connections to the child's birth culture. This is in conflict with what is considered "good" adoption practice these days and I don't know that I buy it. His thoughts on this came pretty early in the book and I found myself approaching the rest somewhat skeptically but I was pleasantly surprised by most everything else he said about raising adopted kids. His thoughts on the losses experienced by adoptees were compassionate and helpful, and his exploration of the "why" of transracial adoption was sensitive and affirming. Actually, that's a good summing up of this book-- I may not agree with every detail of the "how" of adoption as fleshed out in this book, but the "why" of adoption by Christians presented here is compelling and beautiful.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Briannaheldt

    So I waffled between giving this book two or three stars. It had some good stuff in it, but I disagreed with a lot of what the author said too. (Mostly in regard to his kids' birthcountry, etc.) Some of it seemed a little insensitive to the fact that his children had a life and a story prior to becoming his sons.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Nicole N. (A Myriad of Books)

    I first saw this book when Pastor Mark Driscoll said he recommended it to those who thought about adopting, was adopted, or know people who are adopted. So, being the one who wishes to adopt children, I got this (well, technically, my fiance bought it for me, but who's counting?). Let me start off by saying that this book is good. I am unfamiliar with the author, Russell Moore, and this was the first book I read about adoption. There are many things I liked in this book but many things I didn't l I first saw this book when Pastor Mark Driscoll said he recommended it to those who thought about adopting, was adopted, or know people who are adopted. So, being the one who wishes to adopt children, I got this (well, technically, my fiance bought it for me, but who's counting?). Let me start off by saying that this book is good. I am unfamiliar with the author, Russell Moore, and this was the first book I read about adoption. There are many things I liked in this book but many things I didn't like and some things, I flat out disagreed with. The part I disagreed with began on page 36, where Moore says people would ask him if he would teach his two adopted children about their cultural heritage (his adopted children are from Russia). He states that most people probably wondered if he would teach his children about Russian culture, folk songs and tales, holidays, etc. Moore says he will teach them about their heritage but not as Russians, but as Mississippians (apparently, that's where their family is from). As someone who is half-Korean, I admit that I was a little taken back by this--maybe because I was brought up with two different cultures colliding. To be honest, I want to teach my (adopted) children about their cultural heritage. That's who they are. I mean, sure they may not live where they are from, but to basically ignore it completely (which, for some reason, I felt Moore is suggesting) would be horrendous to me. I did enjoy that he included a chapter entitled "Don't You Want Your Own Kids?" A lot of times, when I tell people I want to adopt, the question I get is, "Why? Why not have your own kids?" For months, and even to this day, I grapple with that question. Yes, I do want to have my own kids, I tell people, but I also want to adopt one because, like Moore lovingly stated over and over again, we were first adopted by God into sonship (or...daughter-ship, in this case) and we now heirs and co-heirs with Christ. It almost blows my mind that people think adoption is such a crazy idea when I, a perfectly healthy woman, wants to adopt a child. Someone also said to me, "You won't love that child as much as you love your own flesh and blood." All I thought was, "Seriously? A child I fought for and grew to love in nearly the same way as having it in my womb would somehow be loved differently?" I couldn't agree less with this certain person's statement. That was a bit off topic... Nonetheless, Moore was very well-rounded, I thought. This book was Scriptural and informative, answering a broad range of questions such as whether to adopt nationally or internationally, behavior and discipline, and also how extended family members may feel about their sons or daughters adopting a child.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Diana

    Extremely helpful way of contextualizing adoption in the Gospel. My only concern, mentioned by others, was his seeming minimalizing of human culture in early chapters. Although he later talks about personality being formed by genetics, environment, and personal choice, in early chapters he seemed to suggest that adoptees (international, especially) not have exposure to their culture of origin following their adoption, because they were now grafted in to a new family culture. He based on the fac Extremely helpful way of contextualizing adoption in the Gospel. My only concern, mentioned by others, was his seeming minimalizing of human culture in early chapters. Although he later talks about personality being formed by genetics, environment, and personal choice, in early chapters he seemed to suggest that adoptees (international, especially) not have exposure to their culture of origin following their adoption, because they were now grafted in to a new family culture. He based on the fact of our adoption in Christ, noting that we no longer be living in our birth culture of sin. What this misses though, is the fact that my family's culture is not "holier" than an adoptees' culture. Both have value and both are marked by sin. Despite this, I think Russell provides an excellent overview of how adoption fits into the larger priorities of the kingdom, as well as some helpful ways of thinking of how to meet the needs of children, both individually and corporately.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Allison Anderson Armstrong

    Very well-written book on the importance of adoption for Christian families. This is not just a "how to" book or all about the ups and downs of the adoption process. Moore focuses on the gospel-centered purpose of adoption and how we as Christians are all adopted into Christ's family and therefore are brothers and sisters who should care for the fatherless. Superb read for all Christians, those who've been adopted, adoptive parents, or for someone wondering what part they might have in this Bibl Very well-written book on the importance of adoption for Christian families. This is not just a "how to" book or all about the ups and downs of the adoption process. Moore focuses on the gospel-centered purpose of adoption and how we as Christians are all adopted into Christ's family and therefore are brothers and sisters who should care for the fatherless. Superb read for all Christians, those who've been adopted, adoptive parents, or for someone wondering what part they might have in this Biblical mandate. . .

  7. 4 out of 5

    Chloe

    If you are interested in adoption or are responding to the call of adoption, this book will help guide your heart biblically. It provides questions that you would not otherwise think of on your own. It also challenges your belief in Christ and the gospel. What an amazing way respond to the Great Commission as well as spread the wonderful news of the Gospel through adoption. Also, you might be shocked what adoption in return can reveal in you.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Larry Key

    The main point of the book I am behind. Which is why I gave this 4 stars. Some of the lingo used was eh; almost cold. Although the book is directed to adoptive/potentially adoptive parents, I would find myself offended by various things said if I was an adoptee reading this book. I feel we should write from an empathetic stance, even when we may not be directing our writing to those we are being empathetic towards. Empathy breeds empathy. And when it comes to this topic, empathy is extremely imp The main point of the book I am behind. Which is why I gave this 4 stars. Some of the lingo used was eh; almost cold. Although the book is directed to adoptive/potentially adoptive parents, I would find myself offended by various things said if I was an adoptee reading this book. I feel we should write from an empathetic stance, even when we may not be directing our writing to those we are being empathetic towards. Empathy breeds empathy. And when it comes to this topic, empathy is extremely important.

  9. 5 out of 5

    John Gardner

    This is a book I never thought I’d read. Now I can’t imagine how a book exactly like it wasn’t published long before 2009! In his first chapter Moore explains why you ought to read the book, even (and especially) if you don’t want to… and I’m ashamed to admit that this probably described me. There are plenty of “how-to” books regarding adoption. There are plenty of books describing the great need for adoptive families felt by orphans all over the world. There are plenty of books examining the the This is a book I never thought I’d read. Now I can’t imagine how a book exactly like it wasn’t published long before 2009! In his first chapter Moore explains why you ought to read the book, even (and especially) if you don’t want to… and I’m ashamed to admit that this probably described me. There are plenty of “how-to” books regarding adoption. There are plenty of books describing the great need for adoptive families felt by orphans all over the world. There are plenty of books examining the theological doctrine of spiritual adoption. This, to the best of my knowledge, is the only book that combines these three in a manner that shows how these issues absolutely cannot be separated. Russell Moore is a professor at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, but he writes this book as both an adoptive father and an adopted son of our Heavenly Father. His book argues that the Bible does not draw any lines between theological adoption and practical adoption, so Christians should not, either. The Bible tells us over and over what it means to be adopted into the family of God, as sons of the Father and co-heirs with Christ . It also tells us that pure & undefiled religion requires the care and rescue of orphans , just as Christ did not leave us as orphans . Moore does not assert that all Christian families are called or equipped to adopt, but he DOES assert that EVERY Christian has a responsibility to be involved in adoption, whether through becoming adoptive parents, helping others to adopt, or working to create and/or support an adoption ministry in the local church. After reading this book, I am 100% convinced that this is absolutely true. After your Bible, I don’t know that there is a more important book that I could commend to you than this one. Buy it here . You can learn more about this by watching this short promotional video for the “ Adopting for Life Conference “, which Laurie and I will be attending in about a month. If you would like to attend as well, we’d love to travel with you! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G1Y475...

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ryan

    Absolutely superb book. Would highly recommend to anyone thinking of adopting, or anyone who knows someone who is adopting and are wondering about how they could potentially help out. It is very Christian focused but it would still be valuable for people who are not Christians.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Nathan

    Christians are adopted into the family of God and called to love the least of these. Those are just two of many reasons that the church should make adoption a priority.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    James 1:27 Proverbs 30: 8,9 "When we lose our identity, we find it in Christ." "Not every believer will stand praying outside an abortion clinic. Not ever believer will take a pregnant teenager into his guest bedroom. Not every believer is called to adopt children. But every believer is called to recognize Jesus in the face of his little brothers and sisters when he decides to show up in their lives, even if it interrupts everything else." "God often doesn't explain his providence to us past or futu James 1:27 Proverbs 30: 8,9 "When we lose our identity, we find it in Christ." "Not every believer will stand praying outside an abortion clinic. Not ever believer will take a pregnant teenager into his guest bedroom. Not every believer is called to adopt children. But every believer is called to recognize Jesus in the face of his little brothers and sisters when he decides to show up in their lives, even if it interrupts everything else." "God often doesn't explain his providence to us past or future. He asks us to trust Him, to endure, and to know, in the words of the old gospel song, that "we'll understand it all by and by." Sometimes, though, he grants us a glimpse in the middle of it all of how he's silently working toward something joyous." "The decisions you make aren't large scale philosophical decisions; they're just what seems best at the time." "Caring for orphans, means, in a very real sense, joining them in their distress. I cannot tell you that won't be risky. It could upend your plans for yourself and your family altogether. It could wreck your life plan. These children need to be reared, to be taught, to be loved, to be hugged, to be heard. That may take far more from you than you ever expected to give. This sort of love is not easy. But for those who are called to it - it is worth it."

  13. 5 out of 5

    Mary Rachel Fenrick

    I loved this book. He’s got so many great things to say, and there are several sections I highlighted that I know I will return to over the years. Only reasons I didn’t give it a 5 are very minor- I know he was speaking from his personal experience, but I wished he had spent more time talking about adopting toddlers and older children (not babies) and kids from foster care. Also, the book was more geared toward people who are trying to decide about adoption, as opposed to people who already have I loved this book. He’s got so many great things to say, and there are several sections I highlighted that I know I will return to over the years. Only reasons I didn’t give it a 5 are very minor- I know he was speaking from his personal experience, but I wished he had spent more time talking about adopting toddlers and older children (not babies) and kids from foster care. Also, the book was more geared toward people who are trying to decide about adoption, as opposed to people who already have adopted, like myself. Overall, highly recommend.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Joshua D Britnell

    I love the way Moore parallels our own spiritual adoption and the adoption of his sons. I love the perspective that he has of his sons not being “adopted sons,” but that they are simply “sons.” I thought I would come away from this book with a stronger sense of being called to adopt, and while that sense hasn’t diminished, I think my takeaway is a more realistic view of what that actually would entail.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Alexis Neal

    A decent enough book on the importance of adoption for Christians--part memoir, part practical guidebook, part theological text. Nothing terribly earth shattering, though. Moore clearly has a passion for adoption, and encourages others to consider adopting, primarily as a result of our own adoption in Christ. And he makes several excellent points along the way--we do get fixated on the value of having our "own" children and are willing to pursue any possible means of "acquiring" them. We can vie A decent enough book on the importance of adoption for Christians--part memoir, part practical guidebook, part theological text. Nothing terribly earth shattering, though. Moore clearly has a passion for adoption, and encourages others to consider adopting, primarily as a result of our own adoption in Christ. And he makes several excellent points along the way--we do get fixated on the value of having our "own" children and are willing to pursue any possible means of "acquiring" them. We can view adoption as an inferior option, or consider it only in addition to natural children. But it is not inferior, and more than Christians are inferior to their Jewish forbears. Our bond in Christ supersedes our genetic bond with our biological offspring--there are more important things than blood ties. Moore addresses several common misconceptions and talks frankly about his family's struggles with infertility and his own resistance to adoption. He also firmly but gently highlights (and rebukes) the consumerist mentality that is so pervasive, even in our attitudes about children. Adopted children are more work, we think--health problems, abuse, behavioral issues, cost, who knows what all. But we have no guarantee that our "own" children will be free of such struggles. Even biological children can have birth defects or develop deadly diseases or experience trauma that affects them for years to come. Really, to Moore, adoption is like missions. Well, adoption is missions, from his perspective. What I mean is, he believes that just as even those who are not called to move to a third world country to become missionaries are still called to support missions, even those who are not called to adopt children have an obligation to help facilitate and encourage adoption. I have to say, I think he has a point. This might be a much harder read for someone who is either steadfastly resistant to adoption, or who desperately wants his or her "own" biological children and has trouble with the idea of letting go of that dream. But since I have no dog in this fight, I merely found it a moderately interesting exposition on the theological case for adoption.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kayla

    Bookmark the permalink. Adopted for Life Feb5 by theodidaktos As promised, here is my book review of Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches. I must admit… this is a harder book review to write because I listened to it. I don’t have pages to flip through to refer back to or quote from. However, I will do my best. “Adoption is a great idea; it just isn’t for me.” Russell Moore refutes this idea clearly. If you are an obedient follower of Christ, you are such as Bookmark the permalink. Adopted for Life Feb5 by theodidaktos As promised, here is my book review of Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches. I must admit… this is a harder book review to write because I listened to it. I don’t have pages to flip through to refer back to or quote from. However, I will do my best. “Adoption is a great idea; it just isn’t for me.” Russell Moore refutes this idea clearly. If you are an obedient follower of Christ, you are such as a result of adoption – God bringing you into His family, calling you His child, and giving you an inheritance. Indeed, we were all orphans before we were adopted into His family. Because of this, we as His ambassadors on Earth are called to represent His love accurately. This involves adoption. “We believe Jesus in heavenly things (our adoption in Christ) so we follow him in earthly things (the adoption of children).” It is impossible to separate our beliefs from our actions. “Without the theological aspect, the emphasis on adoption too easily is seen as charity. Without the missional aspect, the doctrine of adoption too easily is seen as mere metaphor.” Whether personally adopting or supporting those families who want to adopt, we are called to be actively involved in this aspect of the Great Commission. Russell Moore responds to some of the common sentiments within the church today. Adoption as “not for me.” Adoption “on down the road.” Adoption as “a second option.” Adoption being “too expensive.” Adoption being “too intimidating.” One of the things I appreciate about this book is that no matter how familiar a verse is that he utilizes, he still cites it. This is great for those unfamiliar verses as well. If you’ve never thought about adoption, I highly recommend this book. If you’ve already determined that you’re going to adopt, I even more highly recommend this book. It’s important to check our motives and verify that they are in accordance with Scripture. Be forewarned… Moore uses his own story of the emotions he went through before, during, and after he and his wife adopted two boys from Russia. It may bring a tear to your eye (or a whole river, as it did with me!).

  17. 4 out of 5

    Martha

    3.5 stars. I rounded up. I saw a lot of reviews criticizing Moore’s view of disconnecting the child from their cultural heritage. As they are adopted into his family, they take on his culture and heritage. I don’t fully agree with his process, but I see his good intention— to say to them “you are wholly and completely our children.” I did, however, have issues with the ?tone? of the first three chapters. Ex 1: comparing Planned Parenthood to Herod Ex 2: the “are they really brothers” section seemed 3.5 stars. I rounded up. I saw a lot of reviews criticizing Moore’s view of disconnecting the child from their cultural heritage. As they are adopted into his family, they take on his culture and heritage. I don’t fully agree with his process, but I see his good intention— to say to them “you are wholly and completely our children.” I did, however, have issues with the ?tone? of the first three chapters. Ex 1: comparing Planned Parenthood to Herod Ex 2: the “are they really brothers” section seemed to hold a lot of anger toward people who don’t understand Ex 3: referring to us as children of satan. Yes, we all followed the prince of the power of the air, but we are made in the image of God. God is our creator. Our father. Aside from a quick shade-throw at Mr Rogers, the tone improved through the rest of the book. There’s also a ton of legit honesty towards the end. “As an evangelical Christian, I like a tidy testimony. I once was lost, but here’s how I was found... and so on. But I can’t say that’s true. Rereading my words here, preparing for the new edition, shows me how I fall short of knowing who I am in Christ and living that out.” So what started out as a book that spent a lot of time focused on the negative, turned into something of heartfelt gratitude to God.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Mark

    It's funny how you choose to study certain topics of Scripture, and how some topics seem to "choose you." Adoption is certainly one of the latter instances for me. I have always admired the idea of adoption and for many years I have considered it as an exciting option for growing my own family. This book was recommended to me as an "everyone should read this book" kind of way, and I would whole-heartedly agree with that recommendation. Since my wife and I are expecting our first biological child It's funny how you choose to study certain topics of Scripture, and how some topics seem to "choose you." Adoption is certainly one of the latter instances for me. I have always admired the idea of adoption and for many years I have considered it as an exciting option for growing my own family. This book was recommended to me as an "everyone should read this book" kind of way, and I would whole-heartedly agree with that recommendation. Since my wife and I are expecting our first biological child in a few months it seems like a strange time to read a book on adoption, but somehow I found myself reading this book. As I read I was thoroughly challenged and encouraged. So even if you are like me and it doesn't make sense for you to adopt right now or even to be reading this book, I highly encourage--even challenge--you to pick it up and see what happens!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jeremy Runk

    I got way more out of this book than I ever thought I would. I approached the idea of adoption as the only way I'd ever expand our family. I came to realize god brought me to adoption because it was his purpose. there's a baby out there (or yet to be born) that's meant to be my son/daughter. I'd highly suggest this book if you're considering adoption. it's totally reframed my understanding and beliefs about adoption.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Brian Eshleman

    This book was excellent. The author combines good biblical exposition with relevant and reverent exposition to the specific topic of adoption. He shares good anecdotes that warm the heart and wise warnings that search the soul. He is honest about his own attitudes and preconceptions and the way in which the Holy Spirit dealt with him in those. I would recommend this book for anyone even casually considering adoption. I would also recommend it for anyone in a body of believers where someone is.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Mark A Powell

    Genuine adoption is an inseparable blend of doctrine and process, a flesh-and-blood reality of the spiritual adoption all who are in Christ have received. As such, Moore argues, Christians must be at the forefront of adoption, either opening their own homes to orphaned children or making it possible for other to do so. By engaging in adoption in this way, the gospel of Christ is more clearly communicated to others and understood by us. Highly recommended.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Indira

    I first heard about this book when my husband and me relocated to Kentucky to attend seminary. I hesitated to read it for over a year. I thought that somehow God would give us biological children and I wouldn't have to. I am truly grateful for Dr. Moore's passion and his ability to explain biblical adoption. It is easy to see why it is adoption is beautiful picture of our own adoption into Christ's family.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Vincent

    Super helpful in thinking through adoption. This book gives a strong theological grid for one to think through adoption. Russel Moore intertwines his personal adoption story with a clear gospel presentation throughout the book. His writing is very concrete, specific, and vivid. Read this book if you are considering adoption. Give this book to your parents/friends/church to educate them on adoption!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    This book is a must-read for Christians. As one who has adopted, I felt like I had to read it, but I believe it's applicable for anyone who aligns themselves with Christ and his work here on earth. Moore mines the bible for the theology behind adoption--and his thoughts and conclusions were quite new to me. The book is a compelling and thought-provoking read and I highly recommend it!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ruth

    An articulated theology of adoption, grounded in personal experience. I find myself humbled and moved not just by Moore's personal account of what he, his wife, and their family experienced throughout the adoption process but also by the realization of my own condition as an adopted heir in the family of Christ. Recommended.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Donald Hart

    It was a good book. I like a lot of what he has to say but I think he makes some theological assumptions without biblical support.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Cori-lynn Schuurman

    Absolutely loved this book. Every chapter was more amazing and just reinforced my desire to adopt

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mathew

    You can see more reviews at www.grace4sinners.blogspot.com There's recently been a firestorm about the word “religion” and whether we should hate religion or embrace it. A day prior I had posted on that very topic (providence anyone? Religion: The New “Four-Letter” Word). My goal was to frame the conversation around what the Scripture says. James says, Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from be You can see more reviews at www.grace4sinners.blogspot.com There's recently been a firestorm about the word “religion” and whether we should hate religion or embrace it. A day prior I had posted on that very topic (providence anyone? Religion: The New “Four-Letter” Word). My goal was to frame the conversation around what the Scripture says. James says, Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. (James 1:27 NIV) I wonder how many of the people who protest that religion as a useful word should be discarded are obeying the Spirit when he tells us what true religion looks like (or true Christianity if you hate religion). Are you looking after orphans? Are you caring for widows? This kind of activity will of course look different in every context but it's a command nonetheless. Just as a much as go into all the world and preach the gospel. As a matter of fact, there's a strong biblical argument to made that the two commands are actually closely connected but that's a post for another day. I've had an interest in adoption for a short time now. My wife and I have discussed adopting in the future. If I'm honest I don't know why initially I was attracted to the idea of adoption. I'm not sure I had a theological category for my interest. I don't know that I made the connection between my own adoption into the family of God as his son and my own desire to adopted. My interest may have stemmed from the fact that I'm surrounded by women in my home. Women who are a gift from God and a wonderful joy. Women who I love with all my heart. However, in my heart I've always thought I'd love to have a son also. Maybe adoption spoke to that part of my heart. I'm not sure. Dan Cruver, the founder of Together for Adoption, was my high school Bible teacher. God used him in a powerful way in my life to begin shining the beautiful light of the gospel into my dark heart. I had never heard someone talk about the gospel the way he did with the passion and pain that he did. I've kept in loose touch over the years by following him on facebook and twitter. That same passion for the gospel I saw years before began to focus itself on the connection between the gospel (and our adoption into the family of God) and obeying the command of James by caring for orphans. His testimony for a second time in my life really nurtured the seed that God had planted in my own heart. The culmination of these events compelled me to purchase two books on the topic of adoption during my Christmas holiday--Adopted for Life by Russell Moore and Reclaiming Adoption edited by Dan Cruver. Adopted for Life weaves the Moore's story of adoption throughout the book as he discusses our own adoption into God's family and encourages all Christians to obey God's command concerning care for orphans. Dr. Moore says, Whenever I told people I was working on a book on adoption, they'd often says something along the lines of, ‘Great. So, is the book about the doctrine of adoption or, you know, real ‘adoption’?” That's a hard question to answer because you can't talk about the one without the other. (21). He begins by telling the gut wrenching story of visiting his two sons in their orphanage prior to their adoption was finalized. In the foreward, C.J. Mahaney challenged anyone to read that story without shedding a tear. I smirked. Five minutes laters tears swelling in my eyes, I wasn't smirking. He goes to make the connection to the gospel specific: Adoption is, on the one hand, gospel. In this, adoption tells us who we are as children of the Father. Adoption as gospel tells us about our identity, our inheritance, and our mission as sons of God. Adoption is also defined as mission. In this, adoption tells us our purpose in this age as the people of Christ. Missional adoption spurs us to join Christ in advocating for the helpless and the abandoned. (22) He then discusses a question his family received frequently, “Are they brothers?” For me this chapter was one of the most compelling. I'd just finished up John Piper's Bloodlines so the issue of race was fresh on my mind. It's a longer section but it's really moved my thinking and connected a the issue of adoption and racial conflict within the church. In addition, it opened up the New Testament in a way that I hadn't explicitly understood it previously. A lot of the issue Paul addresses are racial issues in the early church. Apparently we're not so different. But our adoption also shows us just how welcome we are here. This is not, after all, the first time, God has adopted. Too often we assume that the Gentiles are the “adopted” children of God, and the Jews are the “natural-born” children. But Paul says that Israel was adopted too (Rom. 9:4). Of Israel, God once said, “Your origin and your birth are of the land of the Canaanites; your father was an Amorite and your mother a Hittite” (Ezek. 16:3). The Israelites were once Gentiles too. God reminds Israel that he “found him in a desert land, and in the howling waste of the wilderness” (Deut. 32:10). Israel was an abandoned baby, wallowing in its own blood on the roadside (Ezek. 16:5). That’s why Paul seems so furious at the idea that Gentiles would be forced to undergo circumcision. Circumcision answers the question, “Are you a part of the family? Are the promises made to you? Are you in the covenant?” The Jewish believers who prize circumcision want to see themselves, and others, apart from Christ. It’s a lack of faith, a lack of repentance. If they are clinging to their identity in Christ, being found in him, then everything else is “rubbish” (Phil. 3:8–9). Yes, we’re part of the family, but we don’t point to our own circumcised flesh to prove that; we point away from ourselves and to a circumcised, law-keeping, faithful, resurrected Messiah (Col. 2:11–13). And the Jewish leaders who insist on circumcision for Gentile believers are looking under the wrong robe. (36) He also reminds us in the next chapter that Jesus himself was the adopted son of Joseph and without that connection we would not have a gospel fulfilled. Joseph was the connection Jesus had to the Davidic line and if adoption were not an actual familial connection than there's hundreds of unfilled promises in the OT. He reminds us, The universe is at war, and some babies and children are on the line. The old serpent is coiled right now, his tongue flicking, watching for infants and children he can consume. One night two thousand years ago, all that stood in his way was one reluctant day laborer who decided to be a father. (74) He does discuss some very practical issues couples facing adoption may struggle with like a common refrain he hears, “We would like to adopt but we want to have our own kids first.” He suggests for many couples adoption could be a first option. He also address the struggle during the process of the actual adoption and wonders out loud what a church dedicated to supporting the adoption process would look like. He discusses about ethics of IVF compared to adoption and the struggle of interracial and special needs adoption. I found after reading this book my heart moved into a greater understanding of the gospel and a greater understanding of what it means to be adopted for life into the family of God. I also found the desire to adopted my own child increased. Adopted for Life quickly became one of my favorite books. I would highly recommend this for everyone. Adoption is a gospel issue. If you're not doing something, you may not be living in obedience to the gospel.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    There are some REALLY good gems in here of stories, of culture, of scripture, etc. There are also some REALLY careless gross generalizations on culture, non-conservative Christians, etc., that made me want to throw the book against the wall. The author starts sentances with "many," "most," and "few" without any citation and seems to have little perspective beyond his own denomination to be making claims on others. As they say, take what you like and leave the rest. This book is ripe for cherry p There are some REALLY good gems in here of stories, of culture, of scripture, etc. There are also some REALLY careless gross generalizations on culture, non-conservative Christians, etc., that made me want to throw the book against the wall. The author starts sentances with "many," "most," and "few" without any citation and seems to have little perspective beyond his own denomination to be making claims on others. As they say, take what you like and leave the rest. This book is ripe for cherry picking.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jenn

    I read this book to understand the journey many of my church family members have been on. I want to come alongside them somehow as their sister in Christ. That starts with gleaning understanding. I appreciated the discussion regarding common myths and misunderstandings. I understand Mr. Moore's reasoning for not raising his adopted children to know the culture of their country of birth...still not sure I agree... but I can understand how he arrived there. In all, learned a lot. I know what to off I read this book to understand the journey many of my church family members have been on. I want to come alongside them somehow as their sister in Christ. That starts with gleaning understanding. I appreciated the discussion regarding common myths and misunderstandings. I understand Mr. Moore's reasoning for not raising his adopted children to know the culture of their country of birth...still not sure I agree... but I can understand how he arrived there. In all, learned a lot. I know what to offer and ask. Appreciated the book!

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