Jesus brought good news; He came to heal us and to set us free. He came to breathe Life into us so that we could start living right now. He came to release us into the purpose we all yearn for. He came to establish a Kingdom in which we all have a place when we decide to reach out, receive Him and His Kingdom, and take our rightful place at His table.
“Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” John 1:12-13
When we read, “to all who did receive Him” there can be an error in how we interpret His invitation. We can mistakenly think that receiving is passive like receiving our next birthday. It doesn’t just happen without us actually stepping into the thing that He brings for us. Instead of a passive catching of something He brought as though it is floating around, consider the “receipt” as a taking. It is accurately read as to all who reach out and take what He is offering, make it their own and carry it with them as they go.
Someone reading this got all swelled up with false humility and said or thought something like, “well, it’s not mine to take, it’s His to give, I’m a sinner saved by grace and only by His grace do I get anything.” Quit being content with the crumbs of bad theology and read what the Word says.
He gives you permission. Do you see it? “He gave the right.” He gives you the right and the authority. He gave you the privilege of inheritance. That’s what children receive, an inheritance. There is absolutely no test to pass or no hurdle to clear when claiming an inheritance. The will of the Father and your identity as a child entitle you to the inheritance. To all who grab hold of their inheritance because it is theirs, title has passed and they are owners.
Jesus really didn’t run around telling everyone, “be good, and you’ll go to heaven.” He didn’t even talk a whole lot from what we can tell about being saved, born again, etc. Make no mistake; He did talk about being born again to be saved and to ultimately go to Heaven. That’s a good thing and I’m not minimizing it. It just didn’t appear to be the main focus of His ministry, as far as we can tell from the Gospels.
Jesus was much more focused on bringing Heaven here. He was consistent in His declaration that the Kingdom has come. There is a new day, a new wineskin, and it is the Kingdom of God; on earth as it is in Heaven. The King says so, and He says that for all that will take what He is offering them, there is the authority of legitimacy, which comes from relationship with Royalty. The identity of those that receive what the King brings changes and with it, the power and privilege appropriate for the role is part of the deal.