Saturday, September 22, 2012

A Better Country

I’m not from around here. I’m only here temporarily and making my way until such time as I can move on to my last home. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not just here to get what I can get. I’m contributing to my community, assisting in my company’s growth and helping others along the way. But I’m not putting down any permanent roots. 
Not here. 
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Let me explain. Our country was originally founded on biblical principals and came to be known as one nation under God. It was, and in some respects, still is the one place people can come to make a better life for themselves and their families because we are, one nation under God. But today God would be ashamed to be called our God. As a nation, we’ve lost our moral compass and have committed wholesale violation of every one of His Laws.

(1) Not only have we put another god, the god of this world, (2Cor 4:4; John 14:30) before the true God, but we have pushed Him out of our lives, out of our schools, and out of our government buildings, even out of our homes. (2) We’ve set up idols to worship, American idols, and made tokens of everything imaginable and imbued them with the power to bring good luck. (3) We have allowed His name to be taken in vain from Rhett Butler to the latest TV drama and no one stands in the gap to stop it. (Eze 22:30) (4) We have taken God’s seventh day Sabbath and changed it to Sunday so it would not be associated with anything Jewish or with those early so called heretics who called themselves Christians. (5) We’ve ungratefully treated our parents with disrespect instead of honoring our fathers and mothers. We’ve turned things upside down and parents are afraid their children won’t like them if they try to make them behave as they should. (Isa 3:4) (6) On an annual basis we commit 15,000 murders in this country or 5 for every 100,000 people, 1 in every 20,000. This does not even include the 1.21 million abortions last year, 55,458,219 since Roe v. Wade in 1973 and still counting. We think past cultures that sacrificed their children to their gods are primitive, savage and barbaric. Yet we sacrifice over 3,000 unborn babies a day on the altar of convenience and call it our right to choose. (7) What about adultery? Given the secretive nature of infidelity, exact figures about cheating and extra-marital affairs are nearly impossible to establish. But it is estimated that roughly 30% to 60% of all married individuals (in the United States) will be unfaithful at some point during their marriage. That's 1 out of every 3 or even 1 out of every 2 people. (8,9) Stealing and lying is rampant, from the national level politicians and corporate CEOs all the way down to pilfering office supplies and shading the truth to the boss or blaming others for our mistakes in order to keep our jobs. (10) Covetousness has been raised to the level of absolution for immoral behavior. “He must be doing something right. He’s making a ton of money!”

Nope, I’m not from around here and neither are you.

Turn to Colossians chapter 1.
From the day we repented of our sins, were baptized and received God’s Holy Spirit through the laying on of hands, we are no longer citizens of this kingdom but have been translated into the Kingdom of His dear Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
(Col 1:12-13) KJV
(12) Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:  (13)  Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
 We’ve been translated into His Kingdom now! We’re no longer from around here. We’re no longer of this world but sojourners and pilgrims making our way as best we can until such time as the kingdom to which we’ve sworn allegiance has been established here on earth. We are subjects of a Kingdom yet to come to this earth. We may have taken up residence here in the meantime, but just like any other immigrant; we’re not from around here.

Turn to John chapter 18 if you will and we’ll see what Christ had to say about His Kingdom and this world.
(John 18:33-37) KJV
(33)  Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall again, and called Jesus, and said unto him, Art thou the King of the Jews?  (34)  Jesus answered him, Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or did others tell it thee of me?  (35)  Pilate answered, Am I a Jew? Thine own nation and the chief priests have delivered thee unto me: what hast thou done?  (36)  Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.  (37)  Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.
 So this is not yet Christ’s Kingdom and if it’s not the kingdom of our King, then it is not the kingdom of His subjects either.

Turn back a page or two to John chapter 17 and we’ll see what He had to say about our place in this world in His prayer for us to the Father prior to heading to the garden at Gethsemane.
(John 17:11-16) KJV
And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, [kos'-mos] [not of the world] and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.  (12)  While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.  (13)  And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.  (14)  I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.  (15)  I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.  (16)  They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

So Christ even said we are not of this world but have been sanctified, set aside as subjects of His kingdom, through His truth to be joyful witnesses to Him and to occupy till He comes. (Luke 19:13)

While the rest of the nation argues and debates the latest dialectic presented to us by the powers that be, that of Obama versus Romney, left versus right, two avenues to the same destination, we bide our time waiting for our Nobleman, (Luke 9:12) our King to return, sojourning as if we were pilgrims in a strange country but yet looking forward to another, one which has foundations made by God. 

As foreigners we observe the turmoil and agitation of those around us but we don’t get caught up in it.

 Let’s take a look at Hebrews chapter 11. Hebrews 11, the faith chapter.
(Heb 11:8-10) KJV
By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.  (9)  By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles [temporary dwellings] with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:  (10)  For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
 Yes, just like our forefathers before us, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, we are but strangers and pilgrims on this earth awaiting the time when our King returns to install a kingdom that cannot be moved (Heb 12:28), when we’ll no longer look to the capital city of Washington, D.C. but to our new capital city, the holy city of new Jerusalem.

 Though we lament (John 16:20-22) for the depravity we witness around us and minister to those whom we can for the sorrow in their lives, we maintain our focus on the future. We currently reside in this country, and though it may be the best this world has to offer, we desire a better country, one where God is not ashamed to be called our God.
(Heb 11:13-16) KJV
(13) These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. (14) For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country.  (15)  And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned.  (16)  But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.

Let’s get a glimpse of that city in Revelation chapter 21.
(Rev 21:1-7) KJV
And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.  (2)  And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.  (3)  And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.  (4)  And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.  (5)  And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.  (6)  And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.  (7)  He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

Nope, we’re not from around here. We’re from a better place, a better country; we’re from the Kingdom of God where there is no more death, no more pain and sorrow, and no more tears. Onward to the Kingdom!
 

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Ref. http://www.ucg.org/kingdom-god/

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I strive to be as the Bereans spoken of in Acts 17:10-11 receiving the word with all readiness of mind, and searching the scriptures daily, whether those things are so. Check up on me in your own bible. Should you find me in error please let me know immediately. We must prove all things (1Thes 5:21) and rightly divide the word of truth (2Tim 2:15) together lest we be deceived. (Matt 24:24)

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