Adoption as Sons

All of the teachings I have heard on adoption focused on the benefits of being God’s adopted child but not the true maturity level where we are adopted, and the responsibilities that come with being adopted by God.

‘There are five verses in the NASB New Testament that speak to the vitally important truth on adoption, and all of them are in Paul’s epistles. Three of them are in Romans [8:15,23; 9:4], one of them is in Galatians [4:5], and one of them is in Ephesians [1:5].

It is important to note that Paul never says God adopts anyone as a child [Greek – brephos, nepios, paidion, teknon], or that once adopted the adopted person can live in immaturity and irresponsibility [Romans 11:21,22; many others]. Every reference on adoption is to the person who grows up into sonship [huiós]. No one can legally claim the benefits of adoption as sons if they have not matured into sons, and live responsibly as God’s sons.


The passage in Romans 9:4 is in reference to natural Israel who lost their inheritance [Matthew 21:43; Matthew 23:37,38] by continually rebelling against God and rejecting the One Person He sent to save them and bring them into all He saved them to inherit. In other words, God predestined them to grow up into sonship but they chose to remain immature and irresponsible so that they could behave in a way that was not congruent with the salvation the Savior brought to them. Natural Israel chose compromise over Christ and a covenant commitment to Him. We must not follow in their footsteps [See 1 Corinthians 10:1-15; Hebrews 2:1-3a].

All five of Paul’s references have the same phrase, “adoption as sons”, which is the Greek word, huiothesía [hwee-oth-es-ee’-ah]. This word is made up of two Greek words, huiós [hwee-os’ ], and títhēmi [tith’-ay-mee].

Huiós

According to Thayer’s Expanded Definition of New Testament Words a huiós is: “A person who reveres God as their Father, is a pious worshiper of God, someone whose character and life resemble God, a person who is governed by the Spirit of God.”

Paul, in Romans, defined a huiós this way, “For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God” [Romans 8:14].

In Hebrews Paul defines huiós as a person who submits to God the Father’s discipline, including His scourging them for the removal of their carnal nature that always resists the Holy Spirit.

Hebrews 12

“6 ‘For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines, and He scourges every son whom He receives.’ 7 It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children [not a genuine and legal child] and not sons.

9 Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. 11 All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.”

Paul states scourging is so we will share in God’s holiness. To share means to participate in, to accept and use. In other words, God’s discipline is to mature us in to sonship so that we will live and look like God’s Son, Jesus Christ. [See Thayer’s on huiós above]


Of course, Jesus is the Perfect Son who wholly honored the Father, worshiped Him, perfectly re-presented Him and was always led and empowered by the Holy Spirit. It is Jesus who modeled for us all what true Christianity is and how it is to be lived. Even Jesus learned obedience through the things He suffered and He had to grow in favor with God the Father [Hebrews 5:8; Luke 2:52] – from childhood to a son!

Títhēmi

Títhēmi, according to Thayer’s, is defined as: “To set or put in [its rightful] place, to ordain, to fix and to establish. God never sets, or puts someone in place, or in a position for them to be immature and irresponsible. This precedent was started in the Garden of Eden and continues to this day.

Genesis 2

“8 The Lord God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed. 15 Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it.”

Verse 8 reveals access and verse 15 reveals the responsibility that comes with the access. Adam was to cultivate [work to grow] and keep [protect and promote] the Garden as God’s representative overseer of the Garden God placed him in, and the planet God placed him on.

“But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired.” [1 Corinthians 12:18]

And in Ephesians 4 Paul writes the following, “11 And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. 14 As a result, we are no longer to be children [nḗpios], tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; 15 but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.”


Children may be born but it is the sons who can be given the responsibility to govern – “For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders.” [Isaiah 9:6]

It is possible to be granted access to the kingdom and all of its benefits and end up not inheriting the kingdom you were granted access to at your new birth. [See Matthew 5:3; Luke 12:32; 1 Corinthians 6:9,10; 1 Corinthians 9:24-27]

Have you allowed God to place you in a place of responsibility?

Are you being responsible with all of the responsibilities that place possesses?

Are you sure you are adopted by God?

Are you benefiting from benefits without the legal right to those benefits?

Receive and steward God’s passion, power, presence, priority, process, promises, protection, provision, pruning, purging, purity and purpose!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin

A radical spiritual revolutionary

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You say you want a revolution? Join our movement so God can turn your world upside down so He can turn the world right side up!

Ways to join:

1. Prayer support – It has come to that and “It” is so important to Donna and me and what we are called to do moving forward.

2. Financial support – Donna nor I will solicit financial “aid”. Jesus said we were to trust Him so trust Him we do.

We do have strong beliefs about sowing financially into the lives of those who work to obtain, prepare and serve spiritual food. It absolutely dishonors God and those God sows into our lives not to support them generously financially – and that includes feasting on what is posted on social media.

When we pastored we gave 100% of all the money that was given during our conferences, as well as paid for the travel, hotel, and meals of our guests.

Jesus told us, “Do not invite someone to your “house” then make them pay for coming by withholding money that comes in the offerings.”

We would always round the offering total up to the next $1000 amount and some of our guests were speechless when they saw the “love” offerings. They FELT our love!

3. Mentor Movement – We offer help at the request of the person wanting us to mentor them. This Movement is for the occasional need for counsel, advice or ministry. If this turns into more than once a month the person will need to transition to the Discipleship Movement.

4. Discipleship Movement – This Movement involves more advanced training on a regular basis using the Bible and materials written and or published by me and other TRM affiliated and approved authors.

5. Fathering Movement – This Movement takes the relationship to a whole new level of interaction. The training will be similar to the Discipleship Movement but one main thing that separates this Movement from the others is the person expresses to Donna and me they believe God has called us to be their Spiritual Parents. Access to us increases and accountability to us, and us to them increases too.

You say you want a revolution? Join our Movement and watch God turn your world upside down so that He can turn the world right side up!

Receive and steward God’s passion, power, presence, priority, process, promises, protection, provision, pruning, purging, purity and purpose!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin
Spiritual Revolutionary

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Apostles & Fathers

There is much misinformation that misleads people in the area of apostles and fathers in the faith! I hope the misinformed will not continue misleading people, no matter how well intended they may be.

Just because someone is an apostle does not make them a father in the faith. There are a lot of apostles leading ministries and movements who are still children in the faith, and manifest childishness in their daily lives. If you are a genuine apostle you will genuinely grow up.

Even Paul, who was called an apostle from his mother’s womb, said he had to grow up spiritually. In fact, he said after he grew up he still had to make a decision to act grown up!

“When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things.” 1 Corinthians 13:11

Paul did not say when he became an apostle he put away childish things! He said when he became as man he put away childish things. One manifestation of childishness is the need to be needed. Needing attention is a core value of someone who is immature, insecure, and suffering identity and image issues. There are an abundance of leaders who serve for what they need which proves they are still in the childish, carnal, self-centered, self-absorbed level of maturity.

Just because someone is not an apostle does not eliminate them from being a father in the faith. There are a lot of believers with no 5 fold office call on their life who have matured to fatherhood. Some have had a great impact on my life as I developed as a disciple of Christ.

Maturing into fatherhood is the call to every believer in Christ, regardless of their call, mission, office or lack there of! And at the father level of maturity the person is not interested in their personal needs. Their need is to pour their life out for and into a person who needs mature leadership and direction to help them become a mature adult.

“You are to become perfect as your Father in heaven is perfect” applies to all the disciples of Jesus of all ages! Perfect means perfect, not just mature and complete!

Fathering requires running with the person needing fathering in close enough proximity to monitor their progress, without impeding their personal creative expression. This allows the person being fathered to keep their eye on the father but not be encumbered as they run the race set before them.

The person needing fathering must be willing to enter into and embrace the process fathers put them in to develop them into a mature believer. The acceptance of that process verifies the person voluntarily accepts the person fathering them. If the person needing and or wanting fathering in their life constantly complains or resists the person and their process, they prove they are not ready for, or interested in genuine development as a disciple of Christ.

Every believer should look for and find someone who can father them without them needing to call them “father,” or the father being called their “father.”

Jesus said, “Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.” Matthew 23:9

If a “father” needs to be called father to feel adequate, or accepted by the ones they are fathering, then that father has some serious father issues.

I think some who call themselves apostles need to quit worrying about who is, and where are the apostles. If God calls someone to the office of an apostle then God is handling that apostle’s progress into Their purpose! And if God wants one apostle to align with others He is perfectly willing and able to arrange that connection.

I believe there are apostles who take out of context Paul’s statement in 1 Corinthians 4, “14 I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved children I warn you. 15 For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. 16 Therefore I urge you, imitate me.” Paul would reiterate the “imitate me” instruction later in chapter 11 of 1 Corinthians.

Paul did not say the Corinthians did not have many “apostolic” fathers. He just said they had an abundance of people teaching them, not fathering them. This tells me there is a difference in those who teach and those who father. All fathers teach but not all teachers are fathers, even to those they teach. Fatherhood is a maturity level and function, not an office or title. There is no office or title called fatherhood, except in the Catholic Church, which connects apostolic succession to fatherhood! This is, and should be rejected by all believers everywhere.

In addition, Paul, who operated both as an apostle and father to the Corinthians believers, demonstrated apostolic and fathering discipline when needed to those who chose to follow [imitate] his discipleship core value of following [emulating] the lifestyle of Christ Jesus. Purity is paramount in the development of a maturing disciple [son or daughter] of Christ. Discipling a person to Christ is the same as discipling a person to Father God. “The Father and I are one.”  Biblical fathering has everything to do with modeling Father God to the person being fathered so they will become like the Father who is perfect.

“Follow [imitate] me as [in the same way that] I follow [imitate] Christ [the ultimate leader]” should be the standard every kingdom leader lives by. Paul is saying he was following Christ so that he could lead people to Christ. All kingdom discipleship has that core value or it is not kingdom discipleship. Christ is the

Good gracious, Paul said he received, accepted, embraced, and developed his apostolic call, mission and revelatory message apart from the apostles in Jerusalem. He said it was developed on his sabbatical in Arabia.

Galatians 1

“11 For I would have you know, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. 12 For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ. 13 For you have heard of my former manner of life in Judaism, how I used to persecute the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it; 14 and I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries among my countrymen, being more extremely zealous for my ancestral traditions. 15 But when God, who had set me apart even from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, was pleased 16 to reveal His Son in me so that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with flesh and blood, 17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went away to Arabia, and returned once more to Damascus. 18 Then three years later I went up to Jerusalem to become acquainted with Cephas, and stayed with him fifteen days. 19 But I did not see any other of the apostles except James, the Lord’s brother.” 

If Paul were alive today he would not be accepted into some apostolic brotherhoods by some of those who see themselves as the brotherhood’s gatekeepers. Paul went to Jerusalem to get acquainted with Peter and James, not to surrender his apostolic credentials to them.

I think some modern ministers who consider themselves apostles, see themselves erroneously in that select group of original leaders who were called to the closed, select community of the apostles of the Lamb!

All the apostles, even the original 12 called personally by Jesus, volunteered their ministry connections! And the 12 did not require obedience to them as a qualification into the post apostle of the Lamb apostolic office. The nonsensical heresy called “the shepherdship movement” was debunked in the 1970’s. I am concerned some of its tenets still exist and its tentacles are still reaching out trying to entrap unsuspecting saints.

Honor and respect does not require connection or obedience! It is given and received voluntarily! And for that matter, submission is voluntary too. If someone demands submission run as fast as you can. That is called slavery!

Everyone should focus on their personal relationship, call, mission, mandate and message with the Apostle and High Priest of our confession who died, was raised, ascended, and called us into our respective relationships, call, mission, mandate and message for Him.

“Do not think more highly of yourselves than you ought” is a really good verse right now! Especially for apostolic fathers!

In conclusion, if you need a father figure in your life look for one who will look for your loyalty, not require your loyalty. Again, loyalty cannot be demanded. A father who looks for loyalty more than likely will demonstrate loyalty to you. Loyalty is discovered in disagreement just like faithfulness is discovered when there are other options to choose from. If you want and need someone to father you, you must accept the responsibility of being a child [son or daughter]. That responsibility includes but is not limited to recognizing and admitting you do not have all the answers and you volunteer to be parented.

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin

A Hisstorymaker