Monday, April 23rd, 2012
Stage Names (Part 9)
Citizen Of Heaven
Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God.
Ephesians 2:19 (NKJV)
The enemy says grow up fast, get rich quick, and party hard, because life is short. The last part is true. The other parts are not, but mixing a lot of lies with a little truth creates confusion. Since 'God is not the author of confusion' (1 Corinthians 14:33), who is? Surely Satan, 'For he is a liar and the father of lies' (John 8:44).
Satan says seeing is believing. God says the opposite: 'Walk by faith, not by sight' (2 Corinthians 5:7). Because 'Our citizenship is in Heaven' (Philippians 3:20), we follow God's rules--not Satan's.
Without a doubt, our earthly identities are temporary. Families change. People move. Each of us will leave this planet in a relatively short amount of time. The question of our next destination determines how we live and how we die.
As Christians, our next destination is Heaven. On earth, 'We are ambassadors for Christ' (2 Corinthians 5:20) from the government of God, with a code of conduct and a great commission. It's a job with enormous consequences. But we're still going home at the end of the day.
Given this name, what are the star qualities of a citizen of Heaven?
1) Family status: 'And He stretched out His Hand toward His disciples and said, 'Here are My mother and My brothers' ' (Matthew 12:49). 'Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God' (1 John 3:1). Make no mistake about it: you are members of the household of God.
2) An inheritance: 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world' (Matthew 25:34). This inheritance is worth everything. Never forget it is yours, and it is coming. Hold onto God's Word, His promises, and your legacy.
3) Protection: 'In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world' (John 16:33). 'He is a shield to all who trust in Him' (Psalm 18:30). 'But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one' (2 Thessalonians 3:3). Governments protect their citizens--even in a foreign land.
Bottom line: know your homeland. Know its rules and follow them. Know your mission and fulfill it. 'They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world' (John 17:14).
Therein is stage name #9: Citizen of Heaven.
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Stage Names series.