Christians have ownership of the world, and life, and death.

True Christians ought to identify themselves spiritually with Christ. They should not identify spiritually or even brag about human teachers whether dead or alive. I do respect certain leaders, but I should never idolize them or blindly follow them. The only one I should worship and follow is Christ:

So then, no more boasting about human leaders! All things are yours, 22 whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future—all are yours, 23 and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God. (I Corinthians 3:21-23 NIV)

The Apostle Paul here is saying that we should not brag about specific Christian leaders. He mentions three famous, Godly men of his day: himself, the great preacher Apollos, and the Apostle Peter. He cautioned the Corinthians from identifying with either of them (sadly, the Roman Catholics still identify with the Apostle Peter: they claim to get special authority from him. True Christian authority comes from the Holy Spirit, and is displayed through the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), not by claims to be linked to some famous dead Christian).

Paul warns the Corinthian Christians that they are actually belittling their own God-given gifts when they brag about the gifts of famous leaders. Paul said that they are already owners of many great things of which they were apparently ignorant. Christians are owners of the world. Actually, Jesus is owner and creator of the world, but it was created to accomplish His purposes, and since we identify ourselves with Christ, who is our great benefactor and Savior, we are part of the reason for which it was created. Life itself is ours, because when we live for Christ our life has meaning and we will be eternally rewarded for our service on Earth. Unbelievers, however, waste their lives, earning for themselves much condemnation. Death is also ours, because we will be rewarded for how we face death, and it will not conquer us anyway: we will be resurrected. Thus we own the present and the future because our service on Earth will have eternal results.

Ultimately though, our ownership of and success in both life and death is not of ourselves or for ourselves. Our power to live a worthwhile God-honoring life comes from Jesus Christ who owns us. Therefore we live our lives to honor Christ, who in turn honors God by saving and possessing us.

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