|A Scriptural Summary of the Orphan, the
Fatherless and Adoption
Orphan Ministry and Relief
You shall not afflict any widow or orphan. If you afflict him at all, and if he does cry out to
ME, I will surely hear his cry; and My anger will be kindled, and I will kill you with the
sword, and your wives shall become widows and your children fatherless.
He executes justice for the orphan and the widow, and shows His love for the alien by giving
him food and clothing.
The Levite, because he has no portion or inheritance among you, and the alien, the orphan,
the widow who are in your town, shall come and eat and be satisfied, in the order that the
Lord your God may bless you in all the work or your hand which you do.
And you shall rejoice before the Lord your God, you and your son and your daughter and
your male and female servants and the Levite who is in your town, and the stranger and the
orphan and the widow who are in your midst, in the place where the Lord your God chooses
to establish His name.
And you shall rejoice in your feast, you and your son and your daughter and the male and
female servants and the Levite and the stranger and the orphan and the widow who are in
You shall not pervert the justice due an alien or an orphan, nor take a widow’s garment in
When you reap your harvest in your field and have forgotten a sheaf in the field, you shall
not go back to get it; it shall be for the alien, for the orphan and for the widow, in order that
the Lord your God may bless you in all the work of your hands.
When you beat your olive tree, you shall not go over the boughs again; it shall be for the
alien, for the orphan and for the widow.
When you gather the grapes of your vineyard, you shall not go over it again; it shall be for
the alien, for the orphan, and for the widow.
When you have finished paying all the tithe of your increase in the third year, the year of
tithing, then you shall give it to the Levite, to the stranger, to the orphan and to the widow,
that they may eat in your towns and be satisfied.
You shall say before the Lord your God, “I have removed the sacred portion from my house,
and also have given it to the Levite and the alien, he orphan and the widow, according to all
Your commandments which You have commanded me; I have not transgressed or forgotten
any of Your commandments.”
“Cursed is he who distorts the justice due an alien, orphan, and widow.” And all the people
shall say “Amen.”
Others snatch the orphan from the breast, and against the poor they take a pledge.
Because I delivered the poor who cried for help,
And the orphan who had no helper.
Job 31: 16-18
If I have kept the poor from their desire
Or have caused the eyes of the widow to fail,
Or have eaten my morsel alone,
And the orphan has not shared it
(But from my youth he grew up with me as with a father,
And from infancy I guided her),
Job 31: 21-22
If I have lifted up my hand against the orphan,
Because I saw I had support in the gated,
Let my shoulder fall from the socket,
And my arm be broken off at the elbow.
You have seen it, for You have beheld mischief and vexation to take it into your hand,
The unfortunate commits himself to You; You have been the helper of the orphan.
Psalm 10: 17-18
O Lord, You have heard the desire of the humble;
You will strengthen their heart, You will incline Your ear
To vindicate the orphan and the oppressed,
So that man who is of the earth will no longer cause terror.
Learn to do good;
Reprove the ruthless,
Defend the orphan,
Plead for the widow.
“They are fat, they are sleek,
They also excel in deeds of wickedness;
They do not plead the cause,
The cause of the orphan, that they may prosper;
And they do not defend the rights of the poor.”
For if you truly amend your ways and your deeds, if you truly practice justice between a man
and his neighbor, if you do not oppress the alien, the orphan, or the widow, and do not shed
innocent blood in this place, nor walk after other gods to your own ruin, then I will let you
dwell in this place, in the land that I gave your fathers forever and ever.
Thus says the Lord, “do justice and righteousness, and deliver the one who has robbed from
the power of his oppressor. Also do not mistreat or do violence to the stranger, the orphan,
or the widow; and do not shed innocent blood in this place.”
Assyria will not save us,
We will not ride on horses;
Nor will we say again, “Our god,”
To the work of our hands;
For in You the orphan finds mercy.
And do not oppress the widow or the orphan, the stranger or the poor; and do not devise evil
in your hearts against one another.
“Then I will draw near to you for judgment; and I will be swift witness against the sorcerers
and against adulterers and against those who swear falsely, and against those who oppress
the wage earner in his wages, the widow and the orphan, and those who turn aside the alien
and do not fear Me,” says the Lord of hosts.
You would even cast lots for the orphans and barter over your friend,
You have sent widows away empty, And the strength of the orphans has been crushed.
They drive away the donkeys of the orphans;
They take the widow’s ox for a pledge.
They slay the widow and the stranger
And murder the orphans.
Therefore the Lord does not take pleasure in their young men,
Nor does He have pity on their orphans or their widows;
For every one of them is godless and an evildoer,
And every mouth is speaking foolishness.
In spite of all this, His anger does not turn away
And His hand is still stretched out.
So as to deprive the needy of justice
And rob the poor of My people of their rights,
So that widows may be their spoil
And that they may plunder the orphans.
Leave your orphans behind; I will keep them alive;
And let your widows trust in Me.
We have become orphans without a father,
Our mothers are like widows.
I will not leave as orphans; I will come to you.
Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our Lord and Father is this: to visit the orphans
and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.
And My anger will be kindled, and I will kill you with the sword, and your wives shall be
come widows and your children fatherless.
A father of the fatherless and a judge for the widows,
Is God in His holy habitation.
Let his children be fatherless
And his wife a widow.
Let there be none to extend loving kindness to him,
Nor any to be gracious to his fatherless children.
The Lord protects the strangers;
He supports the fatherless and the widow,
But He thwarts the way of the wicked.
Do not move the ancient boundary
Or go into the fields of the fatherless,
For their Redeemer is strong;
He will plead their case against you.
They have treated father and mother lightly within you. The alien they have oppressed in
your midst; the fatherless and the widow they have wronged in you.
For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a
spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!”
And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we
ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption
of our body.
Who are Israelites, to whom belongs the adoption as sons, and the glory and the covenants
and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises
So that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption
He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind
intention of His will
Instances of Orphans in Scripture
Lot in Genesis 11:27-28
The Daughters of Zelophehad in Numbers 27:1-5
Jotham in Judges 9:16-21
Mephibosheth in 2 Samuel 9:3
Joash in 2 Kinds 11:1-12
Esther in Esther 2:7
Instances of “Adoption”
Moses “adopted” by Pharaoh’s daughter – Exodus 2:1-10
Job cared for unnamed orphans – Job 31:16-18
Mordecai “adopted” Esther – Esther 2:7
Jesus “adopted” by Joseph – Mathew 1:18-24
Every Christian has been adopted by God through Jesus Christ –
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and
faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in
their distress and to keep oneself from being
polluted by the world.