Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Strangers in This World

Genesis‬ ‭17:8‬ - Also I give to you and your descendants after you the land in which you are a stranger, all the land of Canaan, as an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.

God made a covenant with Abraham in the Old Testament. That covenant was to to make him a great nation, he and all his descendants. If we are in Christ we are one of those descendants and we are part of this covenant. The land we will inherit someday will be heaven. We are strangers to this world, but not to heaven.

God calls all believers peculiar people. But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light...‭‭(1Peter‬ ‭2:9‬) Have you been called out of darkness into His marvelous light? As believers and followers of Christ we will be "hated" by the world. We will be criticized, looked down upon, ignored, scoffed and even persecuted for our beliefs...even the truthful, uncomfortable words of the Lord. Words which some people find impossible God would say.

If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. (‭‭John‬ ‭15:18-19‬)

This covenant still is for all who call on the name of the Lord. It is available to anyone, no matter how sinful...rebellious, stubborn...against God one might be. Being against God includes those who know of Him, but do not know Him intimately, spiritually.

For we are aliens and pilgrims before You, as were all our fathers; our days on earth are as a shadow, and without hope. ‭(1Chronicles‬ ‭29:15‬)  Like Israel in the land God gave them, they were only passing through in their life. That land was not really theirs, but God's. Kind of like heaven! Our lives on earth are fleeting; yet beyond life lives an eternity. That eternity is either heaven or hell. And...they are an eternity. Forever. 

God tells us to seek first the Kingdom of God and all other things will be added to that. We are not supposed to worry about tomorrow because today has enough trouble of its own. And God knows all our needs before we have need of them. The whole point is to trust in God for our lives. But how can we trust Him if we don't know Him? How can we be part of the marvelous covenant He has between Himself and His peculiar people? If we are in Christ we are those peculiar people that others look at and wonder how in the world we can take Him so seriously. in the world! 

If we are in Christ we share the future kingdom: Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here. (John‬ ‭18:36‬)
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ... (‭‭Philippians‬ ‭3:20‬)

Again, we can all be part of the kingdom of heaven...if we seek Him first, trust Him, and then wait eagerly for the Savior. God's everlasting covenant has been carried through the whole Bible. It is for anyone. It is for those who today scoff and believe that others are acting as if they are superior. The fact is, we are not. By God's own words He has said otherwise. We are peculiar people! Some might think they are superior...that's a given. I am no better than the greatest sinner because everyone sins. I have this going for me, though: I have recognized my sins, recognized my need for a Savior and have received Christ as that one and only Savior. I have learned what the truth is. And, again, anyone who wishes to know the truth can. It's that simple.

‭‭John‬ ‭17:14-17‬ - I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.

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