Philippians 3:20 (TEV)
Immigration status is an important aspect in society. Immigration status determines the rights and privileges of an individual living in a given country or territory. But living in a particular country does not automatically make one a citizen of that country.
In like manner, no one automatically becomes a citizen of the heavenly realm by virtue of birth or cultural heritage. In a sense, when we are born into this world we are foreigners, for this current earth is a temporary home. We are sojourners through the land like Abraham was as he traveled through Canaan, looking forward to a better permanent home. Citizenship in a heavenly country.
To become citizens of the kingdom of God we must accept Christ as our Savior wholeheartedly. We must renounce our allegiance to earthly things and pledge loyalty to Jesus Christ our Lord. This includes keeping our focus on Him and the things that are above.
This does not mean that we disregard the things related to living on earth, just as a traveler through a strange land tends to his daily needs and the needs of those with him. But by accepting the free gifts of forgiveness and grace Jesus purchased for us by His own blood, and maintaining a life-transforming, saving relationship with Him through the leading of the Holy Spirit, our citizenship in heaven is assured.
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