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We Belong To Him

“For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.” Romans 14:7-8

I recently walked with a friend and his tiny little dog through the busy streets of a city in China. He didn’t carry the dog, but let it walk along with us on its own 4 little legs. This little dog was free to go wherever it wanted, but it chose to basically stay in the vicinity of its master. From time to time it would wander off a bit further away, but never out of earshot of its master’s voice. Amidst the hustle and bustle of the crowded sidewalks, honking cars, and crowds of people calling the dog over and petting it, this dog never chose to leave its owner’s side or veer too far from the direction its master was leading him in and when we came to a very busy and dangerous intersection, the dog leaped up into its master’s arms so that it could be safely carried it across. Smart dog. I was impressed and then God impressed upon me that this is how I should walk with Him.

The Bible says you are not your own. How does that make you feel? Your answer probably depends on how you tend to view yourself…as beholden to none or indebted to many? Before you answer that question, let me remind you that in the Bible God describes Himself as a Potter and every human being as a lump of clay in His hands. Not very flattering to think of oneself as a lump of clay, but it’s the truth. Remember too that in the beginning, after God created galaxies, stars, sky and then the earth, plants and animals, the last thing he made was mankind and he did so by forming the first man out of dirt and breathing life into him. So a lump of clay or a pile of dirt, take your pick! It’s not a coincidence that the phrase “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust” is used at funeral services.

The differences between man and God are so vast that all the world’s libraries could not contain the volumes of books necessary to describe them, but for the purpose of today’s study let’s highlight this one simple, yet incredibly important difference: God does not NEED us to believe in Him to validate His existence. If a person does not believe in God it does not take away one iota from the fact that He is God and He is real. We on the other hand ONLY exist because He thought of and created us. So regardless of whether you believe in God or not, you are truly not your own, God owns you. Every human being belongs to God, but as a Christian, you not only recognize this fact but take delight in it and that attitude of delighting in God’s ownership of you makes all the difference…in this life and the next.

In John chapter 3 Jesus places all mankind into two basic groups: those who love darkness and those who love the light. Those who love darkness cannot and will not recognize that they belong to God or that they need Him for anything. They cannot and will not admit they are sinners. Those who love the light have come into the light and allowed their sinful nature to be exposed and by doing so they have discovered the opportunity to put their faith and trust in God’s son, find forgiveness for their sins through His death on the cross, and resurrection and now they are committed to trusting, obeying and following Him for the rest of their days on earth until that glorious day when they see Him face to face and enjoy His company forever in heaven.

God owns the people in both groups, but only those in the light are willing and humbled to be called HIS.

Allow me to return to our 4-legged friend from earlier. His owner found him at a local dog pound, unwanted and caged. My friend chose the dog to be his. Imagine all mankind like stray and unwanted puppies trapped in dark cages. What Jesus accomplished on the cross unlocked our cage doors and opened them wide. How tragic and ridiculous would it be if the once trapped dogs chose to remain inside their dark cages with the doors wide open instead of leaping out into the loving arms of a new master? I’m glad you chose to leap.

You are not your own; you were bought at a price.

How grateful are you today that you belong to God?

“Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.” 2 Corinthians 1:21-22

“For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.” Romans 14:7-8

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