September 3, 2008

But are they REALLY brothers?

In the video post that Dan just put up, theologian and adoptive dad Russell Moore relates some theological insights from the questions he was asked when he and his wife adopted from Russia. I've transcribed (quickly and roughly) a portion below, but I encourage you to watch the entire 3-minute video.

[When my wife and I began the process of adopting,] I found myself answering questions that really irritated me deeply. We had gone on our first trip to Russia and returned back and we had pictures, and we were showing people pictures of our boys.

The question we consistently were asked -- it was two boys -- was, "Well, are they brothers?" and my response was, "Well yes, they are now."

And people who asked the question would say, "Yeah, but are they really brothers?"

And I would say, "Yes, they are really brothers. They are our children!"

"Yeah, but, you know what I mean."

And what they meant was -- common bloodline, common DNA.

And what I recognized in that question was my own prior assumptions about adoptions. And also started to recognize as I looked at Ephesians and Romans and Galatians: that's exactly the question that is being asked within the churches: "Are we really brothers? And by that we mean, Do we share ethnic bloodlines? Do we share common kinship and family ties?"

And the Apostle Paul is getting at: "You are brothers in Christ."

It is a question in which people are talking past each other -- because they are bypassing Jesus.

(To read more of Russell Moore's theological reflections on adopting, see his article "The Brotherhood of Sons" in Touchstone Magazine online.)

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