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Homeward Bound

1 Peter 2.11
Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh,
which wage war against your soul.
We believers are sojourners and exiles in this world because our real home is with God. Heaven is not the pink-cloud-and-harp existence popular in cartoons. Heaven is where God lives. Life in heaven operates according to God’s principles and values, and it is eternal and unshakable. Heaven came to earth in the symbolism of the Jewish sanctuary (the tabernacle and temple), where God’s presence dwelt. It came in a fuller way in the person of Jesus Christ, God with us (Matthew 1.23). It permeated the entire world as the Holy Spirit came to live in every believer.

Someday, after God judges and destroys all sin, the kingdom of heaven will rule every corner of this earth. John saw this day in a vision, and he cried out, Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God (Revelation 21.3). Our true loyalty should be to our citizenship in heaven, not to our citizenship here, because the earth will be destroyed. Our loyalty should be to God’s truth, His way of life, and His dedicated people. Because we are loyal to God, we often will feel like strangers in a world that would prefer to ignore God. When that happens, remember that you’re not home yet.

In the meantime, we are called to live a righteous life in a fallen world. We do this by abstaining from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against our soul. As sojourners whose citizenship is in heaven, we are carefully watched by the world; and we must live to glorify God. It may be difficult today, but it will be worth it when Jesus returns. Let’s honor Christ with lives that reflect His presence so that others may see our good works and give glory to our Father who is in heaven (Matthew 5.16).

To God Be the Glory!

Pastor Jeff
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