We pick up today from where we left off yesterday. We have discussed various similarities between our earthly and heavenly citizenships. Today we continue with the same.
It has been mentioned that citizens of earthly countries may be called upon to defend their country. Well, Christians are in an incessant battle of defending their heavenly home – the kingdom of God. We are truly in a holy war as Paul warned Timothy. â€œThis charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare.â€ I Timothy 1:18
Paul saw the defense of the Gospel as warfare – a spiritual war. He even called two of his faithful companions â€œsoldiers.â€ They were Epaphroditus and Archipus. All Christians are in Godâ€™s spiritual army but many are not in the battle. Could that be why Christianity is actually losing the spiritual battle?
With whom are we at war in defense of the kingdom of God? Here in America our enemy is lost American citizens. Just as we are in Godâ€™s army the lost Americans are in Satanâ€™s army. I believe many Christians do not truly understand that lost people hate Christians and Christianity. All we have to do is read these words of Jesus: â€œAnd ye shall be hated of all men for my nameâ€™s sake.â€ Luke 21:17
We are all too familiar with war and the costly preparation for it. Earthly countries train and equip their citizens to fight wars. They mass produce weapons of all kinds and sizes to kill their enemies. Is there a day that passes without graphic pictures of wars in progress around the world? Will they ever stop? Yes, when Jesus Christ returns and takes charge.
Christians are engaged in a spiritual battle. Our training, battle dress and weapons vary greatly from that of earthly wars. Paul described the pieces of our battle armor as truth, righteousness, the gospel, faith and salvation. For our weapons Paul named just one, the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God. Ephesians 6:13-17 The truth is there are many Christians falling in spiritual battle these days because they have unkempt and missing pieces of the spiritual armor.
Spiritual warfare is waged when the church and Christians seek to save souls through evangelism. Rather than blowing them away with earthly weapons we try to give them a new life through salvation. They then may lose their physical body in battle but their spirit would be saved for eternity. How wonderful it would be if the only war was spiritual in nature where souls were saved rather than having their bodies blown away by battle weapons.
I hope I have succeeded in relating the fact that Christians are dual citizens. They have citizenship both in America and heaven. I hope I have adequately presented the dilemma of those who have American citizenship alone. They will not enjoy heaven unless they gain dual citizenships as Christians have.
Look for another sermon tomorrow. Until then may GOD BLESS YOU