There is a special inheritance locked up in heaven that cannot fade, spoil or perish. It’s guaranteed for everyone who puts their faith in Jesus Christ, and it's far better than anything the royal family has to offer, says James Mildred
Prince Harry’s memoir, Spare, has finally been released for general sale.
From fights with his brother to his fears that Camilla would be an "evil stepmother" the book is packed full of gossip and complaint.
The title is well chosen and is central to Harry’s rationale for his grief, anger and frustration. The pain he so evidently still feels is connected to the fact that he is the second son of the king. In the hierarchical world of the monarchy, William (the heir) is far more important than him (the spare).
In the book, Harry details all the ways this distinction manifests itself, from smaller bedrooms for the spare, to a lack of attention and even, in latter years, less security and support.
On the one hand, I think Harry has got legitimate grounds for complaint. It cannot have been easy to be part of a system that is so rigid, unyielding and based around where you are in the line of succession.
At the same time, it really is all relative. Take Harry’s complaint that his old bedroom was turned into a wardrobe by Camilla. What’s the issue here? Something like that has happened to most of us at different times, as parents rush to repurpose our old bedrooms for their own purposes. Fair enough I say!
His complaint that being the spare means he had smaller bedrooms than William is also par for the course when it comes to younger siblings. And it’s a privileged complaint when you think of the one million children across the UK living in poverty who not only don’t have their own bedrooms, but also lack food as well.
On the subject of heirs and spares, Kirsti Mair produced a brilliant Twitter thread yesterday. She drew out some fascinating parallels between the description of Jesus in Revelation 1 (which is absolutely awesome) and Genesis 4 and the story of Cain and Abel. Her big point? There are no spares in the Kingdom of God. Just heirs.
This drove me to look at key passages in the New Testament where similar language is used. What I found was simply stunning.
What do we inherit? The answer is we inherit everything.
Let's start with Romans 8:12-17. The Apostle Paul gives us some marks that we are genuinely Christian. Firstly, we fight sin and want to kill it (v12-13). Secondly, the Spirit assures us that we are children of God (v14-16). Then comes the triumphant conclusion: if we are children, argues Paul, then we are heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ (v17).
What does it mean to be an heir? It means to inherit. What then do we inherit? The answer is we inherit everything. Romans 4:13 says: “It was not through the law that Abraham and his offspring received the promise that he would be heir of the world, but through the righteousness that comes by faith.” Put that together with Galatians 3:7, where we learn if we trust Jesus, we are Abraham’s offspring and you reach the conclusion: through faith in Jesus we become heirs and therefore, inheritors of the world!
It will be a new world that we inherit. When Jesus returns and the last enemy, death, is destroyed, we will receive our new, eternal bodies and together with all God’s people from every generation, we will live with God, seeing Jesus as he really is, in a world no longer in bondage to sin and its ruinous consequences.
In 1 Peter 1:4 we're told this inheritance is locked up in heaven under guard. It cannot fade, spoil or perish. It’s guaranteed.
Every believer in Jesus shares in this inheritance. Ephesians 3:6 teaches us that the mystery of the gospel is that even non-Jews are heirs of God! So, all of God’s people are heirs and inheritors.
In the Kingdom of God, there are no spares. Just heirs. And all of this is through the indescribable grace of God.
If Prince Harry wants to find reconciliation, he should start by being reconciled to his creator God. Then he will become a true heir and inherit far more than the next in line to the British throne.