School of Religion
The plight of abandoned children in ancient culture is a plight that reaches to the depths of practical Christian living. Adoptions in both Semitic and Greco-Roman were conducted in much different ways than we do now. The background and society in which these adoptions took place, particularly in New Testament times is very important to understanding first century families. Closely tied to the subject of adoption is the subject of orphans, since many of those adopted were orphans. In examining the varying approaches to adoption, it becomes apparent that the contrasts between the cultural and familial perspectives of the Semitic culture and the GrecoRoman are quite significant. These contrasts are seen rather bluntly in the area of adoption.