Tuesday, February 4, 2014
“Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God” (Ephesians 2:19 KJV).
How enjoyable it is to fellowship with other members of God’s family!
The Bible says: “For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself” (Philippians 3:20,21). Interestingly, the Greek word here translated “conversation” is politeuma (note the Greek prefix poli–, “city,” as in “politics”). As today’s Scripture says, we are really citizens of heaven, “the kingdom of [God’s] dear Son” (Colossians 1:13). Philippians 3:20 means that our behavior should reflect heavenly values, God’s Word and doctrine (cf. Colossians 3:1-3), just as one’s beliefs and actions reflect one’s nationality.
We who trusted alone in Jesus Christ’s blood shed, death, burial, and resurrection as the fully-satisfying payment for our sins (1 Corinthians 15:3,4), we also look to heaven to receive physical redemption (Romans 8:22), when Jesus Christ comes to give us new bodies like His (Philippians 3:21). Then, He will take us up into heaven where our true citizenship is, where He will then live His life in and through us in those heavenly places (the life He wants to live in and through us on earth now!).
Paul discussed in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 that the souls and spirits of those who died in Christ, Jesus Christ will bring with Him back to earth, give them and us new bodies (1 Corinthians 15:51-55), and take us Christians living on earth, home. Within a split second, all Christians, living and deceased, will be reunited, caught up (“raptured”) in the clouds, “to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (verse 18). With the years of Christian training on earth complete, the Church the Body of Christ is removed from earth, the Dispensation of Grace closes, Israel’s program resumes, and we are reunited with our Christian siblings, liberated to be vessels of God’s grace in the heavenly places….