I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming. He has no claim on me, but I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father….
“Hey! That’s mine!”
Ever heard that before? Ever said it? Probably. After all, from a very young age we as humans love to lay claim to things. Whether we’re like the seagulls in Finding Nemo repeatedly crying out “Mine! Mine!” at the very sight of something appealing or like a child proclaiming, “I had it first!” when someone wants to play with his toy, we all know the feeling of wanting something to be ours.
Well, in the passage above, Jesus touches on the idea of claiming. Yet instead of declaring what is His, Jesus reminds His disciples whose He is. In His parting words to His disciples, as the day of His arrest loomed closer, Jesus wanted His disciples to remember He came from Heaven–and He belonged to Heaven. No one could claim Jesus unless Jesus allowed them to do so.
And He didn’t.
Jesus knew He was God’s, so He did not let anyone else take that from Him, especially not the devil. Jesus did not die because He submitted to the devil; He died because He surrendered to the will of His Father. He was not overcome; He overcame. Even from the beginning, it was Jesus’ choice to follow His Father’s plan. It was Jesus who chose His betrayer Judas to be a disciple. It was Jesus who chose to allow the guards to arrest Him. It was Jesus who chose to keep silent and to lay down His life for mankind.
It was Jesus who chose to save us.
Do you see the key phrase? It was Jesus’ choice. The ruler of the world had no claim on Jesus. It was Jesus’ choice to follow His Father’s command at any cost. He could have chosen another disciple. He could have chosen to assert His true authority by calling down the angels to smite the Romans. He could have removed Himself from the cross at any time. But He didn’t. He did the will of the Father. He denied that fleshly pride that plagues us all– that desire to be vindicated, to appear righteous, to be understood, to declare what’s ours. Jesus chose to appear sinful that we might be saved.
How could He do this? Why did He do this? Because Jesus knew full well whose He was. And it is because He knew full well whose He was that He was able to fulfill the purpose for which He was sent.
And so I encourage you today to remember something very important: you are God’s child. You are His. God claims you. Therefore do not to let Satan convince you otherwise. The devil has no claim on you, so don’t give him any. Do not allow anyone else to claim you but God. Choose this day–choose every day—to serve your Savior. Walk with a confidence rooted in knowing God is your Father, and no one else can claim you but Him.
But now thus says the LORD, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.