A large portion of the New Testament is composed of letters, or epistles, varying in length. The majority of these epistles were written by St Paul, the Apostle.
St Paul’s story is a very powerful and compelling one. He was a huge persecutor of the Christians. One of the most well-known and feared, perhaps. But then something happened. Paul changed his ways, repented, and became a Christian himself. He started preaching the Gospel courageously and relentlessly, often putting his life at risk. He went from being a persecutor and hater of Christians to a bold, Christ-follower.
As I said above, St Paul wrote a large amount of the epistles in the Bible. Paul directs each of these letters to a group of different people. For example, the letter to the Galatians is directed to the Galatians; the letter to the Ephesians is directed to the Ephesians, and so on and so forth. Throughout these letters, Paul gives instructions or advice to various peoples. He teaches the Faith and makes it easier to better understand.
One of the themes, that appears more than once in St Paul’s writings, is the theme, and the relationship between adoption and inheritance. According to St Paul, these two things were related. What do they have in common, though? How do they fit together? Throughout Paul’s letters, he spoke of our adoption, into the kingdom of God, through Christ. When we completely give ourselves to God, when we trust, and love Him completely, we become His adoptive children. We are brought into the splendor of His kingdom. This leads me to inheritance. Heaven is the ultimate reward. It’s the ultimate prize. Heaven is our inheritance. God’s presence is our inheritance. God’s love is our inheritance. Just as a son or daughter of a family will inherit money or land, or whatever else it might be, so also, we, children of God, receive our inheritance when we become adopted sons and daughters of Christ. We receive the ultimate inheritance. It is not money or land or old heirlooms. It is something much more valuable and superior. We inherit eternal happiness, eternal life, and salvation. By adoption, we inherit a place in the Kingdom of God. When we follow Christ, we receive something worth so much. We become richer than any person in this world. When we follow Christ and place ourselves in Him, we receive the greatest and most precious gift: the gift of His love. God’s love is the greatest thing we know. Unlike pretty much anyone and anything in this world, it knows no limits. God has so much love for His children. He has so much love for us, that we cannot even comprehend.
Not just anyone has the privilege to receive the inheritance that comes with spiritual adoption, however. In order to receive the greatest reward, we must first become adopted children of God (see how they have started to come together?). Not just any person will receive a family’s inheritance; the inheritor must be part of the family. Similarly so, not just anyone can enter the kingdom of God. We must be faithful children of God. We must take up our crosses, just as Jesus said, and follow Him. We must place ourselves completely in Christ. We must live a life, that glorifies God if we wish to receive our inheritance. We must try our best to imitate Christ with our lives. That is what Paul believed with regards to adoption and inheritance. It’s what I believe as well.