Keeping My Rights in Perspective

Hebrews 2:1, 3 NKJV Therefore we must give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard, lest we drift away…how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him,
Hebrews 1:1-2a NKJV
God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son;

God, as creator and ruler of the universe, wasn’t obligated in any fashion to speak to us, his creation, at all. The fact is that once sin came into the world, God could have legally and ethically destroyed everything and started over. He didn’t. Instead, He chose to speak to us over and over again, doing everything He could to compel us to Him.

This kind of perseverance is described in a parable in Matthew 21:
“Hear another parable: There was a certain landowner who planted a vineyard and set a hedge around it, dug a winepress in it and built a tower. And he leased it to vinedressers and went into a far country. Now when vintage-time drew near, he sent his servants to the vinedressers, that they might receive its fruit. And the vinedressers took his servants, beat one, killed one, and stoned another. Again he sent other servants, more than the first, and they did likewise to them. Then last of all he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ But when the vinedressers saw the son, they said among themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and seize his inheritance.’ So they took him and cast him out of the vineyard and killed him. Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vinedressers?” Matthew 21:33-40 NKJ

There are some important things in this parable:

  • The vineyard was only leased to the vinedressers. It was owned by the landowner who had spent his own money making the necessary improvements that it might be a successful business.
  • The vinedressers only cultivated and pruned the vines.. Their contribution was minimal compared to the contribution of the landowner.
  • As part of the arrangement, the landowner sent his representatives to the vinedressers to receive the profits from the land, but the vinedressers had become focused on their rights rather than their responsibilities and did everything they could to retain those rights to the point of murder.

We often think that because we live in these bodies, that we own them. Or because we live in our homes or have a job or have possession of a car that we own them. The fact is that everything is the Lord’s to do with as He pleases. Ownership, as we understand it, is a transitory thing. The Lord gives us temporary custody of things, but He is the ultimate owner and it is to Him that we owe an accounting of what we do with the things with which He has entrusted us.

God has spoken to us in these days through the words and life of His Son, the Lord Jesus. God loved us so much that He sent His very own Son not only to speak to us, but to die for us. I think it’s important that we never lose sight of the preciousness or significance of that truth. The Lord has been so patient with mankind—with each of us—sending in these last days even His Son to contend with our rebelliousness. At some point, we need to, at the least, fully surrender in acknowledgment of His right of ownership. And even greater act would be to bow in worship, thanksgiving, and love.

ch a man or woman will be “very much out of step with the world” (p. 90). I think that I’d rather be very much in step with the Lord Jesus.