2006-03-14 - God's Rights
Everyone is concerned about his or her own rights, and everyone wants their rights protected. To protect the rights of some, we allow the slaughter of millions of innocent children. To protect the right to bail on commitments, divorce is allowed for any and every reason under the sun, to the detriment of children and society. Others have their rights protected by governments that throw God's plan out the window and allow same-sex marriages. We can't even speak about God in many public forums, because we have to protect the rights of people who adhere to other belief systems. What about God? What about his rights?
God should have the right to do what he wants to do. In fact, God does have every right to do as he pleases. God has every right to be the sovereign ruler of our lives. He has four basic sets of rights over us.
If an author produces a manuscript, a copyright can guarantee him all legal rights to it. If an artist creates a masterpiece on canvas, he has rights as its creator. God declared to Isaiah, "I made the earth and all the people living on it. With my own hands I stretched out the skies." (Isaiah 45:12a NCV) God has the right of creation. David wrote, "The earth belongs to the Lord, and everything in it - the world and all its people. He built it on the waters and set it on the rivers." (Psalm 24:1).
If I were to buy a pack of gum, I am free to chew it a stick at a time. If I wanted to, I could eat it all at once. I even have the right to give it all away or stick it to the side of my house. I can do with it as a I desire, because I won it. We were sold into sin's slave market. Adam sold his soul for a taste of forbidden fruit. Jesus bought us out of that market by paying a price only he could pay. Paul tells the Corinthian church they were "bought with a price." (1 Corinthians 6:20) Peter told the dispersed Christians, "You were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot." (1 Peter 2:18,19 NKJV). God has rights to us as owner; he has the rights of redemption.
There is an old saying that "possession is 9/10 of the law." Basically, the person who has an item is considered the owner. If I buy a yard gnome and sit in a stranger's yard on the way home, he is within his rights to throw it away. He is considered to be in possession of the tiny yard ornament. Christians are not only bought, but we are also possessed. Jesus said, "And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand." (John 10:28-29) God has the rights of possession.
If I rent a house or an apartment, the owner has to do a lot of work to get me evicted, even if I don't pay my bills and wreck the place. Tenants have many rights. Just the act of dwelling in a place guarantees certain rights. "What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?" (1 Corinthians 6:19) As believers, God dwells in us giving him occupancy rights.
God created us. God bought us. God possesses us. God occupies us. Isn't it about time we gave God his rights? Bottom line, God is God, and God will do exactly what he wants to do. He has every right to do so. Whether we see him as Lord or not does not diminish his lordship over us one iota, or his rights. Will you live for him or live in rebellion against him?
All scripture references from KJV unless otherwise noted