By Elizabeth Prata
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; (Philippians 3:20)
Charles Spurgeon preached on this verse:
Our text, I think, might be best translated thus— “Our citizenship is in heaven.” The French translation renders it, “As for us, our burgess-ship is in the heavens.” Doddridge paraphrases it, “But we converse as citizens of heaven, considering ourselves as denizens of the New Jerusalem, and only strangers and pilgrims upon earth.”
I. The first idea which is suggested by the verse under consideration is this: if our citizenship be in heaven, then WE ARE ALIENS HERE; we are strangers and foreigners, pilgrims and sojourners in the earth, as all our fathers were. In the words of Sacred Writ “Here we have no continuing city,” but “we desire a better country, that is an heavenly.”
Let us illustrate our position. A certain young man is sent out by his father to trade on behalf of the family: he is sent to America, and he is just now living in New York. A very fortunate thing it is for him that his citizenship is in England; that, though he lives in America and trades there, yet he is an alien, and does not belong to that afflicted nation; for he retains his citizenship with us on this side the Atlantic.
Yet there is a line of conduct which is due from him to the country which affords him shelter, and he must see to it that he does not fail to render it. Since we are aliens, we must remember to behave ourselves as aliens should, and by no means come short in our duty. We are affected by the position of our temporary country.
Do you eagerly await our savior? I do. It’s Independence Day here in the United States. There will be fireworks, barbecues, beaches, parades, and gatherings. When Jesus comes, we will have a magnificent independence! The Great Gathering will happen and then we will be freed from this body of death. We will be free from the presence of sin. We will be free to gaze in adoration upon the Savior all the day long, and bask in His glory light in wonder and in love.
So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. (John 8:36).
No flags in heaven, but the presence of every nation, tribe, and tongue.
After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:9-10).