Word Nerd Wednesday – Adopted

Please welcome adoptee and faith blogger Renee Griffen to My Messy Desk for this week’s Word Nerd Wednesday!



a·dopt is pronounced əˈdäpt/.

Adopted is the past tense verb of the root word adopt.

Online definitions for adopt include: (hyperlink to the word definitions this link: https://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=adopted&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8#q=adopted+definition )

“1. legally take another’s child and bring it up as one’s own”

The origin of adopt began with roots grown from the Latin word, adoptare.

When adoptare is dissected into parts, the ad means “to” and the optare means “choose”.

By the late 15th century, the Latin adoptare merged into the French word adopt.

The Bible contains several accounts of adoption including Moses who was taken in by Pharaoh’s daughter in Exodus 2, and Queen Esther who was raised by her Uncle Mordecai in Esther 2:7.

Interestingly enough, the word adopt is not found in these accounts nor anywhere in the Old Testament. As a child of adoption, I love reading stories of other adoptees in the scripture, but until I dug into the word adopted, I didn’t know it wasn’t used in the Old Testament.

The word adopted first appears in the New Testament.
The Greek word, huiothesia, translates into adopted.
According to Strong’s, G5206-huiothesia occurs a total of five times.

The root of huiothesiais is formed with G5207-huios and G5087-tithēmi.

G5207-huios = son
G5087-tithēmi = to set, put, place, fix, establish

The first verse we find adopt in scripture is in Romans 8:15:

“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” KJV

“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” NIV

Paul was teaching in Romans about slavery and freedom. The Old Testament contained the law. When Jesus came and died for us on the cross, the law was fulfilled once and for all. Christians, who place their faith in Jesus, are no longer slaves to the law. In Christ, we are adopted into the family of God. He chose us, brought us into the family, set us free, and gave us an eternal inheritance.

“You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.”
“If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
Galatians 3:26,29 NIV




“Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, ‘Abba, Father’. So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.” Galatians 4:6-7 NIV

“I’m no longer a slave to fear.
I am a child of God.
From my mother’s womb,
You have chosen me.
Love has called my name.
I’ve been born again,
Into your family.
Your blood flows through my veins.”

No Longer Slaves, Bethel Music


Renee Griffin 2Renee Griffin was adopted as a baby, but she carried a dream of finding her birth family. After years of searching, she found her birth family in 2003. God called her to write about her adoption reunion journey ten years later. Renee obeyed the call and began writing her story, Eyes Of A Stranger, on her blog . She is passionate about studying scriptures and seeing God’s Truths revealed in ordinary life. She enjoys social media and loves hanging out on the digital waves with her Jesus sisters participating in Twitter parties and blog linkups. Renee has been married to her love, Kevin, for over 20 years, and is Mama to three of the most amazing children God ever created.

Connect with Renee:

4 thoughts on “Word Nerd Wednesday – Adopted

  1. “No Longer Slaves” is one of favorite songs. I am a child of God…

    Sitting with you at dinner one night at She Speaks 2015 opened my eyes to adoption. I am so thankful Renee, that you tell your story. Blessings! Thanks Liz for sharing Renee with us.

    1. I cannot wait to talk to you again, Carmen. I LOVE your voice. Thankful for that night at the table with new sisters in Jesus…it was a precious moment for me. Hoping we can dine together again this year.

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