“Imagine the scene. We are in ancient Rome, around about the year 50 BC. You are a Roman citizen with a beautiful wife called Maximilia. You have been married about five years and have been trying to have children. Pretty soon it has become clear that one of you is infertile [unable to have children] and that your family name [the pater familias], so precious in Roman culture, is not going to be perpetuated [continued] unless you have a son.
 
Together you make the decision to adopt. So you look first of all to your own household, to the slaves who serve you. There you find a slave called Marcus who has a wife and four children, three of them boys. You go to Marcus and you ask whether he would be prepared to sell one of his boys for adoption. After long consideration, Marcus says yes.
 
Why do Marcus and his wife agree to this? First and foremost, because it will mean that their son becomes a free man. The precarious [unstable] and oppressive [harsh] life of slavery is over. Secondly, because it means that their son will inherit the pater familias of their master and, in the process, become sui heredes. He will become the master’s very own heir and will inherit the master’s entire estate. Thirdly, because it means that all the adopted son’s previous debts will be cancelled on joining his new family. What may seem a heartless act to us – the sale of a son – is therefore an act of kindness.
 
So the whole process of adoption begins. You go with Marcus and the boy to the local Roman magistrate [judge]. Proceedings known as Adoptio Sensu Strictu [adoption proceedings] begin with all of you standing before the magistrate. Three times the natural father sells the boy to the new father and on each occasion the magistrate watches as the boy is passed from one to the other.
 
After the third transaction, the magistrate makes the declaration: ‘This boy is now adopted as your son.’ The money passes hands from the adopting father to the natural father, and the boy is now legally sui heredes [heir], the new father’s son and heir. He has been taken out from under the patria potestas [fatherly authority] of Marcus the slave, and placed under a new patria potestas [fatherly authority].
 
The boy now has the status of a free person. All previous debts are cancelled. The boy has a new family and a new future.
 
Now marvel with me at the spiritual application of this picture. The story of what is known as our ‘salvation history’ can be summed up as a journey from slavery to sonship, involving a process of spiritual adoption.
 
John 8:34
    34Jesus answered them, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Whoever commits and practices sin is the slave of sin.

 
When Jesus died on the cross, all that was needed to pay for our adoption was provided not through gold or silver but through the precious blood that He shed. [1 Peter 1:18-19]
 
If we want to become God’s sons and daughters, we must therefore believe that Jesus paid the adoption price on the cross, that He died to set us free from sin, and accept him as our Savior and Lord.
 
The cross is therefore the bridge over which we must travel if we want to be delivered from slavery into sonship. The cross is vital to our adoption.”
 
In his excellent book, From Orphans to Heirs: Celebrating our spiritual adoption, from which this quote is taken, Rev. Dr. Mark Stibbe [www.fathershousetrust.com] brings to life the following glorious realities of the Gospel. Upon asking Jesus into our hearts:
 

  • we are no longer bound in darkness; instead, we live free in pure, uninterrupted light;
 
  • we are no longer doomed to an eternity in Hell; instead, we will enjoy an eternity basking in Father God’s presence and love;
 
  • we are no longer slaves to sin who are laboring under harsh taskmasters; instead, we are sons of the only Pure Father, Who is able to offer unconditional, non-manipulative love;
 
  • we are no longer sons who must “perform” to “earn” approval from judgmental, angry fathers; instead, we can rest in the security that our Father loves us for who we are, not for what we do or for how well we perform;
 
  • we are no longer orphans striving to “get, get, get”; we are no longer orphans needing to stay alert so that nothing is stolen from us; instead, we are heirs who can rest in our rightful inheritance guaranteed us through the shed blood of Jesus Christ.

 
The psalmist acknowledges this rest:
 
Psalm 127:2
    2It is vain for you to rise up early, to take rest late, to eat the bread of [anxious] toil--for He gives [blessings] to His beloved even as they sleep.

 
Have you asked Jesus into your heart? Have you accepted the Truth that He willingly offered up His life for you, to restore you to the relationship with God that God desires?
 
If you have not done this, you are not a son, and you might as well stop reading in this section now.
 
If you are interested in investigating the Way to restored relationship with God and into your position as son, at the end of this page is a prayer which will transform you from slave to son.
 
If you have accepted Jesus into your heart, whether or not you realize it right now, you are a son.
 
The slave boy here was transferred from slavery to sonship through a legal transaction. This same legal transaction occurred for each of us because of the shed blood of Jesus Christ.
 
Let’s compare this concept of transferring from slavery to sonship with this verse from Acts:
 
Acts 26:18
    18To open their eyes that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of satan to God, so that they may thus receive forgiveness and release from their sins and a place and portion among those who are consecrated and purified by faith in Me.

 
Now, let’s discuss this adoption process and view it from the perspective of: (1) the parents who sold their son; and (2) the son who was sold.
 
If you were a loving parent who was also a slave ― you were a “possession,” owned by another man ― and you had this same opportunity to obtain freedom for your son, would you sell your son? Why or why not?
 
Let’s say you made the same choice as Marcus to sell your son so that he might be free. Does the decision to sell your son make him any less your son? [No.]
 
In your mind, would you feel that the decision to sell your son proves your love for him?
 
When you make the decision to sell your son, once you have the purchase price in your possession, are you able to stop loving him? Do you stop thinking about him?
 
Does your heart so change that, when longtime friends ask about him, you deny that you ever had a son?
 
Let’s say that years pass between the day when you sold your son and purchased his freedom to the day when you next see him. You are both in a neighboring city’s marketplace at the same time.
 
He is dressed in fine clothes and he has grown into a responsible, good-hearted businessman with a reputation for integrity and honesty. What emotions would you feel at seeing him?
 
Now, let’s discuss this sale from the perspective of the son who, with one legal transaction, was transferred from his position of slave to his new position of son.
 
Your parents sold you. How would you feel about that?
 
Your parents made the choice to do what was necessary in your culture to transfer your life circumstances from those of poverty to those of tremendous wealth.
 
In that context, how would you view your birth parents? How would you view your new “parents”?
 
Think about the riches that are suddenly yours to enjoy. Yesterday, you were poor in every aspect — physically, financially, relationally, emotionally — and today, you possess true wealth.
 
Starting with your parents’ one decision and one legal transaction, wealth ― and the glorious future which comes with it ― is now yours.
 
Each of us has had a similar experience to this young slave boy. With one decision, one legal transaction, we have been transferred from true poverty to true wealth. Who can explain what legal transaction happened? [We were adopted by Father God. Jesus’ Blood paid for our adoption.]
 
What other similarities are there between us and this young slave boy?
 
How we have had a similar experience to this slave boy? [We accepted Jesus into our hearts and now all of Father God’s riches are ours to enjoy.]
 
Now, let’s imagine that first day when the slave boy leaves the home with which he is so familiar, a slave’s home, and is led by his new parents into their home. Perhaps he’s been in the rich people’s home before, or perhaps he’s only worked in the fields or in the stables, or peeked longingly through the windows when no one was looking.
 
Now, he sees their home from a new perspective! He can walk through the front door without fear!
 
It takes time to really believe that these riches are his to enjoy. Honestly, how long do you think it would take you to adapt to the luxuries of extreme riches?
 
Do you see where this discussion is headed?
 
When we became Believers, Jesus’ shed blood insured that all of Father God’s riches were ours. Jesus purchased us as surely and as determinedly as the Roman couple purchased the slave boy.
 
To fully enjoy what became yours when you accepted the Truth of Jesus’ shed Blood, first go to the section called His Purchase, then to Jesus’ Exchanges, and then to Our True Riches.
 
With these Truths in mind, let’s read from the Book of Romans, chapter 8.
 
Romans 8:28-32
    28We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.
    29For those whom He foreknew [of whom He was aware and loved beforehand], He also destined from the beginning [foreordaining them] to be molded into the image of His Son [and share inwardly His likeness], that He might become the firstborn among many brethren.
    30And those whom He thus foreordained, He also called; and those whom He called, He also justified (acquitted, made righteous, putting them into right standing with Himself). And those whom He justified, He also glorified [raising them to a heavenly dignity and condition or state of being].
    31What then shall we say to [all] this? If God is for us, who [can be] against us? [Who can be our foe, if God is on our side?]
    32He who did not withhold or spare [even] His own Son but gave Him up for us all, will He not also with Him freely and graciously give us all [other] things?

 
Romans 8:37-39
    37Yet amid all these things we are more than conquerors and gain a surpassing victory through Him Who loved us.
    38For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers,
    39Nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 
If Father God did not withhold the life of His Son, if Father God’s plan was to make His Son become a curse for us and to bear all our sins on His body, how can we think that Father God would ever withdraw His love from us now?
 
If Father God was willing pay such a vast purchase price for each of us, do you really think He would stop loving us?
 
Matthew 10:29-31
    29Are not two little sparrows sold for a penny? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father's leave (consent) and notice.
    30But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
    31Fear not, then; you are of more value than many sparrows.

 
Matthew 6:25-33
    25Therefore I tell you, stop being perpetually uneasy (anxious and worried) about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink; or about your body, what you shall put on. Is not life greater [in quality] than food, and the body [far above and more excellent] than clothing?
    26Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father keeps feeding them. Are you not worth much more than they?
    27And who of you by worrying and being anxious can add one unit of measure (cubit) to his stature or to the span of his life?
    28And why should you be anxious about clothes? Consider the lilies of the field and learn thoroughly how they grow; they neither toil nor spin.
    29Yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his magnificence (excellence, dignity, and grace) was not arrayed like one of these.
    30But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and green and tomorrow is tossed into the furnace, will He not much more surely clothe you, O you of little faith?
    31Therefore do not worry and be anxious, saying, What are we going to have to eat? or, What are we going to have to drink? or, What are we going to have to wear?
    32For the Gentiles (heathen) wish for and crave and diligently seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows well that you need them all.
    33But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.

 
Just as the slave boy had to mentally adjust to the reality that, in one transaction, everything he could see--and even more things that he couldn’t see--were his, we, too, may have trouble believing that God’s riches are ours to enjoy.
 
1 Timothy 6:17
    17As for the rich in this world, charge them not to be proud and arrogant and contemptuous of others, nor to set their hopes on uncertain riches, but on God, Who richly and ceaselessly provides us with everything for [our] enjoyment.

 
Let’s savor those truths: “Richly and ceaselessly.” “For our enjoyment”!
 
Now would be an excellent time to review the section His Lavish Generosity.
 
Let’s now read two passages which will introduce us to the rest of this topic.
 
Galatians 3:26
    26For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God through faith.

 
Galatians 4:7
    7Therefore, you are no longer a slave but a son; and if a son, then [it follows that you are] an heir by the aid of God, through Christ.

 
Before you were an adult, did you consider yourself a slave? For most of us, when we were children and when adults in authority in our lives forced us to wash dishes, carry water from the river or from the well, do homework, or clean the house, we probably felt like we were slaves.
 
It seemed like everyone had authority over us. We may have even grumbled something about feeling like their slaves as we half-heartedly obeyed their orders.
 
When we advanced to our teenage years, we were once again slaves, though we didn’t realize it. As teens we were slaves to much less forgiving slavemasters — our peers. All they had to do was look at us with rejection, they could force us to “perform” to earn their approval. We were slaves to their approval.
 
For many of us, it was during our teen years that we became slaves to yet another slavemaster. We didn’t realize that our wrong choices to sin against God ― to desire [lust for] those things which our Father God has warned us against ― would put us in prison as certainly as any downtown judge could put us in prison.
 
James 1:15
    15Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.

 
Matthew 6:24
    24No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will stand by and be devoted to the one and despise and be against the other. You cannot serve God and mammon (deceitful riches, money, possessions, or whatever is trusted in).

 
Hebrews 2:14-15
    14Since, therefore, [these God’s] children share in flesh and blood [in the physical nature of human beings], He [Jesus Himself] in a similar manner partook of the same [nature], that by [going through] death He might bring to nought [nothing] and make of no effect him who had the power of death--that is, the devil--
    15And also that He might deliver and completely set free all those who through the [haunting] fear of death were held in bondage throughout the whole course of their lives.

 
2 Peter 2:19
    19They [wicked] promise them liberty, when they themselves are the slaves of depravity and defilement--for by whatever anyone is made inferior or worse or is overcome, to that [person or thing] he is enslaved.

 
John 8:34
    34Jesus answered them, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Whoever commits and practices sin is the slave of sin.

 
In ancient times, one man purchased another; one man became another’s slave through the exchange of money. Instead of purchase, satan deceived each of us into making willful choices which caused us to become slaves. We became slaves through a series of wrong choices. Think about that.
 
I’ll give you some adjectives which describe this slavemaster — cruel, evil, vicious, hateful, vengeful, ferocious, unforgiving, merciless.
 
What is the name of this vicious slavemaster? [satan.] Jesus described him this way:
 
John 10:10
    10The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).

 
The Bible affirms that we all were slaves, trapped in bondage to sin and to fear of death. Let’s read some Bible passages which describe our state of self-imposed slavery before we were Believers and offers hope of freedom:
 
Romans 6:All
    1What shall we say [to all this]? Are we to remain in sin in order that God's grace (favor and mercy) may multiply and overflow?
    2Certainly not! How can we who died to sin live in it any longer?
    3Are you ignorant of the fact that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?
    4We were buried therefore with Him by the baptism into death, so that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious [power] of the Father, so we too might [habitually] live and behave in newness of life.
    5For if we have become one with Him by sharing a death like His, we shall also be [one with Him in sharing] His resurrection [by a new life lived for God].
    6We know that our old (unrenewed) self was nailed to the cross with Him in order that [our] body [which is the instrument] of sin might be made ineffective and inactive for evil, that we might no longer be the slaves of sin.
    7For when a man dies, he is freed (loosed, delivered) from [the power of] sin [among men].
    8Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him,
    9Because we know that Christ (the Anointed One), being once raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has power over Him.
    10For by the death He died, He died to sin [ending His relation to it] once for all; and the life that He lives, He is living to God [in unbroken fellowship with Him].
    11Even so consider yourselves also dead to sin and your relation to it broken, but alive to God [living in unbroken fellowship with Him] in Christ Jesus.
    12Let not sin therefore rule as king in your mortal (short-lived, perishable) bodies, to make you yield to its cravings and be subject to its lusts and evil passions.
    13Do not continue offering or yielding your bodily members [and faculties] to sin as instruments (tools) of wickedness. But offer and yield yourselves to God as though you have been raised from the dead to [perpetual] life, and your bodily members [and faculties] to God, presenting them as implements of righteousness.
    14For sin shall not [any longer] exert dominion over you, since now you are not under Law [as slaves], but under grace [as subjects of God's favor and mercy].
    15What then [are we to conclude]? Shall we sin because we live not under Law but under God's favor and mercy? Certainly not!
    16Do you not know that if you continually surrender yourselves to anyone to do his will, you are the slaves of him whom you obey, whether that be to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience which leads to righteousness (right doing and right standing with God)?
    17But thank God, though you were once slaves of sin, you have become obedient with all your heart to the standard of teaching in which you were instructed and to which you were committed.
    18And having been set free from sin, you have become the servants of righteousness (of conformity to the divine will in thought, purpose, and action).
    19 I am speaking in familiar human terms because of your natural limitations. For as you yielded your bodily members [and faculties] as servants to impurity and ever increasing lawlessness, so now yield your bodily members [and faculties] once for all as servants to righteousness (right being and doing) [which leads] to sanctification.
    20For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.
    21But then what benefit (return) did you get from the things of which you are now ashamed? [None] for the end of those things is death.
    22But now since you have been set free from sin and have become the slaves of God, you have your present reward in holiness and its end is eternal life.
    23For the wages which sin pays is death, but the [bountiful] free gift of God is eternal life through (in union with) Jesus Christ our Lord.

 
1 Corinthians 6:12
    12Everything is permissible (allowable and lawful) for me; but not all things are helpful (good for me to do, expedient and profitable when considered with other things). Everything is lawful for me, but I will not become the slave of anything or be brought under its power.

 
Galatians 4:1-7
    1Now what I mean is that as long as the inheritor (heir) is a child and under age, he does not differ from a slave, although he is the master of all the estate;
    2But he is under guardians and administrators or trustees until the date fixed by his father.
    3So we [Jewish Believers] also, when we were minors, were kept like slaves under [the rules of the Hebrew ritual and subject to] the elementary teachings of a system of external observations and regulations.
    4But when the proper time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born subject to [the regulations of] the Law,
    5To purchase the freedom of (to ransom, to redeem, to atone for) those who were subject to the Law, that we might be adopted and have sonship conferred upon us [and be recognized as God's sons].
    6And because you [really] are [His] sons, God has sent the [Holy] Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, Abba (Father)! Father!
    7Therefore, you are no longer a slave (bond servant) but a son; and if a son, then [it follows that you are] an heir by the aid of God, through Christ.

 
Galatians 4:22-31
    22For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the bondmaid and one by the free woman.
    23But whereas the child of the slave woman was born according to the flesh and had an ordinary birth, the son of the free woman was born in fulfillment of the promise.
    24Now all this is an allegory; these [two women] represent two covenants. One covenant originated from Mount Sinai [where the Law was given] and bears [children destined] for slavery; this is Hagar.
    25Now Hagar is (stands for) Mount Sinai in Arabia and she corresponds to and belongs in the same category with the present Jerusalem, for she is in bondage together with her children.
    26But the Jerusalem above (the Messianic kingdom of Christ) is free, and she is our mother.
    27For it is written in the Scriptures, Rejoice, O barren woman, who has not given birth to children; break forth into a joyful shout, you who are not feeling birth pangs, for the desolate woman has many more children than she who has a husband.
    28But we, brethren, are children [not by physical descent, as was Ishmael, but] like Isaac, born in virtue of promise.
    29Yet [just] as at that time the child [of ordinary birth] born according to the flesh despised and persecuted him [who was born remarkably] according to [the promise and the working of] the [Holy] Spirit, so it is now also.
    30But what does the Scripture say? Cast out and send away the slave woman and her son, for never shall the son of the slave woman be heir and share the inheritance with the son of the free woman.
    31So, brethren, we [who are born again] are not children of a slave woman [the natural], but of the free [the supernatural].

 
Ezekiel 34:27
    27And the tree of the field shall yield its fruit and the earth shall yield its increase; and [My people] shall be secure in their land, and they shall be confident and know (understand and realize) that I AM the Lord, when I have broken the bars of their yoke and have delivered them out of the hand of those who made slaves of them.

 
Nahum 1:13
    13So now, I will break his yoke bar from upon you, and I will tear off your shackles.

 
Isaiah 51:14
    14The captive exile and he who is bent down by chains shall speedily be released; and he shall not die and go down to the pit of destruction, nor shall his food fail.

 
Knowing of our no-win situation ― of being slaves to satan and to death ― Jesus came to earth with one purpose. One.
 
What was Jesus’ one purpose? [To restore us to relationship with Father God by dying on the cross as a pure sacrifice for our sins.]
 
Earlier, we acknowledged that we became slaves through a progression of wrong choices. Jesus purchased our freedom through His progression of right choices.
 
Jesus purchased us because Father God planned for us and planned for relationship with us since the foundations of Time. We just read that nothing can separate us from His love. Now, let’s read the wonderful passage from Ephesians 1 which reminds us that He has given us every spiritual blessing.
 
Ephesians 1:3-8
    3May blessing (praise, laudation, and eulogy) be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) Who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual (given by the Holy Spirit) blessing in the heavenly realm!
    4Even as [in His love] He chose us [actually picked us out for Himself as His own] in Christ before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy (consecrated and set apart for Him) and blameless in His sight, even above reproach (accusation), before Him in love.
    5For He foreordained us (destined us, planned in love for us) to be adopted (revealed) as His own children through Jesus Christ, in accordance with the purpose of His will [because it pleased Him and was His kind intent]--
    6[So that we might be] to the praise and the commendation of His glorious grace (favor and mercy), which He so freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.
    7In Him we have redemption (deliverance and salvation) through His blood, the remission (forgiveness) of our offenses (shortcomings and trespasses), in accordance with the riches and the generosity of His gracious favor,
    8Which He lavished upon us in every kind of wisdom and understanding.

 
Ladies, in Christ you are in the position of sons, which, in Jesus’ time, was considered the highest, most honored position, instead of the [in those days] less-respected position of daughters.
 
Ladies, step into the truth that you are in the most esteemed position, that of sons.
 
Jesus has existed eternally as King of all Kings and Lord of all Lords. Eternally, He has reigned in His position as King (among many other highly-exalted titles). He wasn’t moved, as we were, from the position of a slave and transferred to a position as a son.
 
If Jesus had not laid aside His majesty, if He had not come to earth and lived a sinless life, we would be slaves to satan … eternally.
 
As we grow in our relationship with Father God, we will find ourselves being tutored much like the sons in Jesus’ time, with one glorious difference. While we are children, we are not cared for by nursemaids and teachers, as was the norm in Jesus’ day. Instead, we are tenderly cared for and nurtured by Father God Himself. [You might want to review the section He Nurtures.]
 
Once we have reached a level of maturity in Him, we must then serve as His apprentice and learn His ways through obedience. The Bible says that even Jesus “learned obedience.”
 
Hebrews 5:7-9
    7 In the days of His flesh [Jesus] offered up definite, special petitions [for that which He not only wanted but needed] and supplications with strong crying and tears to Him Who was [always] able to save Him [out] from death, and He was heard because of His reverence toward God [His godly fear, His piety, in that He shrank from the horrors of separation from the bright presence of the Father].
    8 Although He was a Son, He learned [active, special] obedience through what He suffered
    9 And, [His completed experience] making Him perfectly [equipped], He became the Author and Source of eternal salvation to all those who give heed and obey Him,


Like Jesus did, we must learn how to serve. We must daily choose to put others’ needs ahead of our own.
 
1 Corinthians 10:24
    24Let no one then seek his own good and advantage and profit, but [rather] each one of the other [let him seek the welfare of his neighbor].

 
Father God gives you the ability to love your neighbor, and when you determine to love your neighbor, your love of God is nourished.
 
Instead of being forced to be slaves, because we are confident in our position as sons, we can choose to serve as if we were slaves. John Wesley put it this way:
 
"Do all the good you can,
 By all the means you can,
 In all the ways you can,
 In all the places you can,
 At all the times you can,
 To all the people you can,
 As long as ever you can."
 
Let’s look at what has changed in our status now that we’ve been elevated from slaves to sons:
 
Romans 8:18-30
    18[But what of that?] For I consider that the sufferings of this present time (this present life) are not worth being compared with the glory that is about to be revealed to us and in us and for us and conferred on us!
    19For [even the whole] creation (all nature) waits expectantly and longs earnestly for God's sons to be made known [waits for the revealing, the disclosing of their sonship].
    20For the creation (nature) was subjected to frailty (to futility, condemned to frustration), not because of some intentional fault on its part, but by the will of Him Who so subjected it--[yet] with the hope
    21That nature (creation) itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and corruption [and gain an entrance] into the glorious freedom of God's children.
    22We know that the whole creation [of irrational creatures] has been moaning together in the pains of labor until now.
    23And not only the creation, but we ourselves too, who have and enjoy the firstfruits of the [Holy] Spirit [a foretaste of the blissful things to come] groan inwardly as we wait for the redemption of our bodies [from sensuality and the grave, which will reveal] our adoption (our manifestation as God's sons).
    24For in [this] hope we were saved. But hope [the object of] which is seen is not hope. For how can one hope for what he already sees?
    25But if we hope for what is still unseen by us, we wait for it with patience and composure.
    26So too the [Holy] Spirit comes to our aid and bears us up in our weakness; for we do not know what prayer to offer nor how to offer it worthily as we ought, but the Spirit Himself goes to meet our supplication and pleads in our behalf with unspeakable yearnings and groanings too deep for utterance.
    27And He Who searches the hearts of men knows what is in the mind of the [Holy] Spirit [what His intent is], because the Spirit intercedes and pleads [before God] in behalf of the saints according to and in harmony with God's will.
    28We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.
    29For those whom He foreknew [of whom He was aware and loved beforehand], He also destined from the beginning [foreordaining them] to be molded into the image of His Son [and share inwardly His likeness], that He might become the firstborn among many brethren.
    30And those whom He thus foreordained, He also called; and those whom He called, He also justified (acquitted, made righteous, putting them into right standing with Himself). And those whom He justified, He also glorified [raising them to a heavenly dignity and condition or state of being].