If children, [we are] heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ.
A birthmark of a true believer in Christ is an inherited wealth. Paul said in Romans 8:17, “If children, [we are] heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.”
One of the richest men who ever lived was Cecil Rhodes. He was an Englishman, but he went to live in Africa because of his deteriorating health. While he was in Africa, he made a fortune in the diamond business. Cecil Rhodes died prematurely at the age of 49. When he died, instead of leaving his massive wealth to his family, he left his wealth to establish what we know today as the Rhodes Scholarships.
The Bible says God is a wealthy God. He owns “the cattle on a thousand hills” (Psalm 50:10), so there is no way to calculate His wealth. Unlike Cecil Rhodes, though, God intends to leave His wealth to everyone who is in His forever family. That is what Paul was talking about in Romans 8:17. We are heirs of God. That means everything that belongs to God the Father is one day going to be yours. What is included in the wealth that God has planned for you? Think about your inheritance. God has a mansion for you that He is building right now in Heaven. He has promised you a new body forever free from suffering, sickness, sin, and death. He has promised that one day you are going to reign with Him in Heaven forever in a position of honor. He has promised that one day you are going to enjoy with Him a perfect relationship completely untainted by sin. I think that is what Jeremiah had in mind when he said, “The Lord is my portion” (Lamentations 3:24). The Lord Himself is a share of the wealth we have. If we are truly children of God, then we are heirs of God.
Our inheritance is absolutely certain, but it is also future. Many Christians miss this. The inheritance that is planned for us is mainly future. All too often, we are like greedy children who want their inheritance now. It is true that there is a part of your inheritance you can enjoy right now as a child of God. You do not have to wait until you die to experience all the benefits of being a Christian. Right now, you can have contentment with your financial situation. You can have peace no matter what is happening around you. You can have victory over sin. All those things are part of your inheritance right now as a child of God.
But most of your inheritance is still yet to come. Peter said God’s inheritance is “reserved in heaven for you” (1 Peter 1:4). He went on to say, “In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials” (1:6). Yes, you are an heir to the wealth of God, but do not forget that before the inheritance comes suffering. Trials precede the treasure. Weeping precedes the wealth. The cross always comes before the crown.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Birthmarks of the Believer” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2014.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.