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Adoption: The Long View logo for ep503 on Adoption and the Bible

Adoption and the Bible: A Deeper Look with Amber Jimerson

For Christians and the Curious

My new book,  Adoption Unfiltered, has three chapters in it devoted to religion and adoption. My co-authors and I each researched and covered a chapter. Sara Easterly, an adoptee and a Christian, wrote about religion’s pain points for adoptees. Kelsey Vander Vliet Ranyard, a birth mom, wrote about religion’s role in relinquishment. I, an adoptive parent, wrote about reexamining religious narratives that guide us on our journeys to adopt, and later, in the ways we parent our children. In each case, we interviewed people of various faiths who had witnessed ways in which religion – not God – had caused harm.

No parent wants to cause harm, at least, not knowingly. So what do you need to know about some of the unexamined ideas you may have around your religion’s messages and their effects on your child and their birth parents?

With us this month is Amber Jimerson, a birth mother and a preacher’s wife, who has dived very deeply into this ocean of thought. When is the word “adoption” used in the Bible? Who uses it in the Bible, and who doesn’t? How have things been misinterpreted over the millennia, and what ideas and verbiage need some current critical thought?

Are you open at this moment to seeing an old thing in a new way? I love when that happens to me! Which is why I’ve invited Amber to share what she’s learned from her research.

Adoption: The Long View logo for ep503 on Adoption and the Bible
Adoption: The Long View
503: Adoption & The Bible

About Amber Jimerson

Amber Jimerson is a birthmother of a 17-year-old in a semi-open adoption. Amber lives with her husband and their four children in Indiana, where her husband is a full-time preacher.

Amber is currently completing her bachelor’s degree in psychology, after which she’ll pursue a master’s in Marriage & Family Therapy. For the past two years, she has facilitated a virtual support group for birth parents through the National Association of Adoptees And Parents, where she serves on the board.

While adoption and theology are ongoing interests, Amber is also an artist, painter, and writer at heart. She loves being in nature, listening to podcasts, and reading too many books.

"If we look at what the Bible actually says, we see there is no way it is talking about adoption as we practice it today. All the ways we practice it now were not known to ancient cultures." Amber Jimerson in Adoption: The Long View ep503
"Christianity came out of Judaism and there were no adoption practices in Jewish law. The only time we see the word “adoption” is by one writer in the New Testament. This brings up questions." Amber Jimerson in Adoption: The Long View ep 503

Ep 503 on Adoption and the Bible

In ep503, Amber reveals what her study of adoption and the Bible reveals, and some contextual differences between what was written in the past and what is said today. She tells us what messages some church leaders  convey, and what message she would like to relay back, should she have the chance.

Amber shares what she has learned from studying ethics and what it would mean to apply those principles to adoption. We talk about parenting from a fixed (closed) mindset or a growth (open) mindset, and Amber muses how fundamentalism isn’t just for religion.

"When parents keep birth parents at arm’s length, I sometimes wonder if it’s not because birth parents are actually unsafe, but because they’re unchurched." Amber Jimerson in Adoption: The Long View ep 503
"To combat fundamentalist thinking, expand your comfort with discomfort and develop an appreciation of wonder and uncertainty. Take more joy in the questions than in the answers." Amber Jimerson in Adoption: The Long View ep 503

Finally, Amber offers her takeaways for those who are parenting in adoption, as well as her best advice for listeners.

Show Notes: Adoption and the Bible with Amber Jimerson

How to Tune In Regularly

Lori Holden of Adoption The Long ViewYou can find Adoption: The Long View on and on these other platforms.


A new episode comes out the first Friday of the month. Thank you for sharing, subscribing, and rating this episode wherever you listen!

Lori Holden, mom of a young adult daughter and a young adult son, writes from Denver. She was honored as an Angel in Adoption® by the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute.

Find Lori’s books on her Amazon Author page, and catch episodes of Adoption: The Long View wherever you get your podcasts.

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