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

What are your rights? As citizens of a country, you acquire a set of rights that are defined by the society and its government. The question is, what rights do you have in God’s kingdom? The short answer is, well, it depends.

Here in the opening pages of his gospel, John paints a cosmic picture of Jesus. He reminds us that Jesus IS God and that he always has been.. He is setting us up to be shocked by the reality that much of humanity rejected Jesus when he arrived on the pages of history. The creator meets the creation, and the creation rejects him. But the news is not all bad. John goes on to tell us in verse 12, “Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—.”

Those who embrace Jesus as Savior, acquire a citizenship that carries with it a beautiful set of rights. The one mentioned here is the right to be called Children of God. Adoption into God’s family is a right to those who receive Jesus. What are your rights in God’s kingdom? If you receive Jesus, your rights are that of a beloved child. I want you to think about that. When you are in moments of discouragement or shame, you are a child of God.

The word “right” in this text carries with it the idea of authority and power. Child of God is not just a title, it’s a position of authority in God’s world to enact the Father’s will. This too is what it means to receive Jesus. Receiving Jesus involves receiving his plan for creation and leveraging your newfound authority to bring his plan into reality. Take a moment and listen to the song “Run To The Father.” Contemplate the beautiful gift it is to have God as Father.

By Aaron Bjorklund