Our hope is not in the coming of the Lord. Our hope is in the Lord who is coming.
I'm not waiting for an event to bail me out. I'm waiting for a person that I know and love. He's coming back. He's my Lord.
He's my Savior. And that intimacy will be fully realized at that point. By the way, one of the ways to tell a person is really a citizen of a kingdom is he or she wants to see the King. They can't wait to see the King. Jesus doesn't change you in order to love you.
He loves you in order to change you into everything you were created to be. Today on Connect with Skip Heisek, Skip shares what will happen the moment you are changed completely and perfectly reflect the beauty of Christ. Now we want to tell you about a resource that shines important light onto what's happening in the Middle East. The beating heart of Bible prophecy is the land of Israel and the Middle East. Joel Rosenberg has his finger on the pulse of the world shaking changes happening right now. And he unveils them in his new nonfiction book, Enemies and Allies. This is the first book of its kind that takes you inside the Oval Office, inside the palaces of the kings and crown princes, the presidents and the prime ministers in Israel and in the Arab world. As we ask them, what do you think about religious freedom, about making peace with Israel, about the threat from Iran, about U.S.-Arab relations, U.S.-Israel relations? Enemies and Allies from multiple New York Times bestselling author Joel Rosenberg takes you on an unforgettable journey inside the turbulent Middle East. You'll go behind closed doors to hear from the very kings and crown princes, presidents and prime ministers who are leading the charge. Enemies and Allies includes exclusive, never before published quotes, insights and analysis from the author's conversations with some of the world's most controversial leaders. Your hardcover copy of Enemies and Allies is our thanks for your generous gift of $35 or more today.
To give, call 800-922-1888 or visit connectwithskip.com. Okay, we're in Philippians chapter 3 as Skip Heitzig starts today's study. In Philippi, like just about everywhere else in the New Testament early church, there were two groups that were on the opposite end of the spectrum.
Both were problematic. One we've already noted were the Judaizers. These were people who said you have to keep Jewish law, go through Jewish ritual in order to be saved, keep circumcision. They were the legalists. On the other hand, there were the Gnostics. And the Gnostics were not legalistic, they were antinomian, that is, having no law at all. And the Gnostics believed that all matter was evil, only the Spirit is good, and that you can be saved by aligning your spirit in surrender to God, but you do anything you want with your body because your body is irredeemable. So in effect, the Gnostics said, as long as in your heart you believe in God and follow Christ, you can live any way you want with your body.
That was problematic. So we don't know if he's referring to the legalistic group or the antinomian group, the Judaizers or the Gnostics. Either way, both groups being problematic would fit the description, enemies of the cross of Christ. They are a menace.
Now I just want you to look at this for a moment from a little different angle. Those who may be among us and are not true citizens of the kingdom of God, churchgoers, yes. Well-meaning, yes.
Sincere, yes. They'll go along, they'll come to church, they'll sing the songs, but they're not part of the kingdom yet. Instead of saying, get away, how about saying, come closer? How about saying, don't just believe with your mouth, how about really believe in your heart? How about having a true conversion? How about coming to Christ and truly believing Him? So instead of seeing them as a menace, we could start to see them as a mission.
I'm going to focus my attention, and you know what? Dr. Elton Trueblood noted this. Our main mission field today, as far as America is concerned, is within church membership itself. Even the Billy Graham Association. Billy Graham said a while back, our crusades find the greatest challenge and the greatest response from among church members. That's why he would always invite different churches to his crusades, because he knew a lot of people who came weren't really saved people.
But he wanted them to hear the gospel. So the question you need to ask yourself is, are you an imitation citizen or are you a true citizen? Has your passport, so to speak, been stamped by the blood of Jesus Christ?
Have you applied that personally, authentically, really to your own life? Or are you hiding behind the mask of some religious group or system? So, citizens walk with partners, watch for pretenders, but here's a third.
Citizens wait for a place. Verse 20 tells us about that. For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Did you notice the contrast between verse 19 and verse 20? Verse 18 and 19, he describes the pretenders and the last thing he says in verse 19 is, who set their mind on earthly things. In contrast to that, but our or for our citizenship is in heaven.
Let me refresh your memory. When Paul opened this letter, he noted that the Philippian believers had two addresses, physical address, spiritual address, to the saints who are in Philippi in Christ Jesus. You have a physical address, Philippi or Albuquerque. You have a spiritual address, in Christ Jesus. And because you have a spiritual address, you have an eventual address, mentioned here.
Your eventual address is in heaven. Why do I bring this up? Because this helps answer why we as believers get so excited and preoccupied with heaven.
You know, I've been accused by unbelievers. They always talk about heaven, it's like the great escape. You're so heavenly minded, you're no earthly good. Well, let me tell you why we're so focused on heaven, because we're citizens of heaven.
It's going to be our eventual home. He says our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Now look at the word citizenship for just a moment.
I'm having you look at it because it's the only place in the New Testament Paul uses this word in this manner. The word citizenship is the word in Greek, palituma. Palituma is the Greek word from which we derive our word, politics. Or political affiliation, for our politics are in heaven. For our political affiliation is in heaven.
You know, I've noticed something about politics. It always divides people. You could have a conversation even among believers. If we started loving on each other and singing together and stuff like we're doing now, if I brought up a political issue, I would divide this nice happy gathering. Always happens, it divides families, divides believers. And as I grow in the Lord, I am becoming less political and hopefully more spiritual in my outlook.
I am much less a Republican, much less a Democrat. And today when people say, well, what are you? I'm a theocrat. I believe the only hope for this place is when Jesus comes back and rules everything and everyone. Speaking of which, he says, from which, verse 20, we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now notice something. Our hope is not in the coming of the Lord. Our hope is in the Lord who is coming.
I'm not waiting for an event to bail me out. I'm waiting for a person that I know and love. He's coming back. He's my Lord.
He's my Savior. And that intimacy will be fully realized at that point. By the way, one of the ways to tell a person is really a citizen of a kingdom is he or she wants to see the King. They can't wait to see the King. If you're not a citizen of the kingdom of God and you hear a believer say, Jesus is coming soon, that doesn't excite you.
First of all, you think they're wacky. But if you were to actually believe in what they said, Jesus is coming, you wouldn't go, oh, great. You go, oh, no. He is? Uh-oh.
That's not good news to you. But if you are a citizen of the kingdom, it's like, yes. Can't wait to see my King.
Now, brings up a question if you are a citizen of the kingdom. How are you waiting for the King? It says we eagerly wait for him.
Would that describe you? Are you eagerly waiting for him? Or would you say, well, my waiting for him is sort of like a passive resignation. You know, I've heard Jesus is coming for years. My grandma used to say that. So, yeah, Jesus is coming again.
Or do you have a bored disinterest in his coming? You know, a citizen, once that person is a citizen, when they're away from their homeland, they get homesick. First time I traveled overseas, I was so excited to get on an airplane and have my own passport.
It's like, see, I got a passport. And I was in that country and I loved trying the food and all the customs, but I was there for like a few months. And the first week I was all geeked and excited and try everything. But, you know, after a couple weeks, didn't take long, I started like having dreams of hamburgers and stuff, like American things. And I've gotten better as time has gone on, but I just got sort of homesick. I wanted to have my friends around me again and the things that I was used to. And so it is with us in the kingdom of God.
We get homesick. One of the great promises Jesus ever made was, in my Father's house, there are many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you, I'm going to prepare a place. It's a real place for you. And if I go, I will come again and receive you to myself, that where I am, you may be with me always.
And so we look forward to that. I sort of feel like, especially the older I get, and I know that heaven is a lot closer now than it used to be, and that the road ahead of me is shorter than the road behind me. I sort of feel like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz. Remember, she'd click her heels and go, there's no place like home. There's no place like, I feel like saying, there's no place like heaven. There's no place like heaven. That's our home. Question, how do we become heavenly citizens?
Easy answer. You trust in Jesus Christ, who did the work for you on the cross, and He writes your name down, so to speak, in the registry of heaven. I want you to Skip ahead a couple of verses. Go to chapter 4, verse 3, and just notice the language. He says, I urge you also, true companion, help these women who labored with me in the gospel with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, now notice this phrase, whose names are in the Book of Life. By the time you get to Revelation, the Book of Life is called the Lamb's Book of Life, or the Book of Life of the Lamb.
It's given either way. Jesus said to His disciples, Luke chapter 10, Rejoice, because your names are written in heaven. You trust Him, and He put your name down on the logbook. So by the time you die, you show up in heaven, and say, we've been expecting you. Your name's here, and you're right on time, by the way.
Come on in. A few years ago, I had a very distinct opportunity. A friend that I know arranged when we were in Israel once, three of us, to meet with the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, in his office at the Knesset. Now, he's the one that put our names down on the registry.
He was sort of like the one who was the go-between, but he arranged it. We were given instructions, be at the Knesset gate, the certain gate at the Knesset at exactly 2 p.m. on a certain day. We showed up. They looked at the registry. Our names had been written down. They asked for our passport to make sure it wasn't altered or mutilated, that I was the person whose name was on the list, and then they said, please come in.
Welcome. Now, I was there in the Prime Minister of Israel's office, Bibi Netanyahu, not because I decided I wanted to go, not because I was really sincere, and I think I deserve it. I was there solely on the intercession of another person who put my name down on that registry. That's how I get to heaven. I'm there by the merits of another, the intercession of another, who put my name down in the Book of Life.
So, when you say, why are Christians so interested in heaven? Well, our name is written there. Our Savior lives there. He will return from there. He will take us back to there. Our fellow believers who have died before us are already there, and our inheritance and reward is there.
Why shouldn't we look forward to that? Our citizenship is in heaven. However, please see that heaven is much more than a destination. It's a motivation.
It should motivate us. Knowing that our names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life is a motivation for a pure life and a gospel preaching life. John writes this, We know that when He shall appear, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is, and everyone who has this hope purifies himself, even as he is pure. There's nothing more pure than believing Jesus Christ could come at any moment. When you believe that, when you live with that in mind, it's a motivation, because you're about to get involved in some enterprise or with another person, and you have this thought, what if Jesus comes now? That'll keep you from doing a lot of stuff, or it'll get you involved in doing good stuff. It'll motivate you to say, you know, these people don't know the Lord. I want to make sure they get to heaven. So it's a motivation, not just a destination. So there are the descriptions of a heavenly citizen. Citizens walk with partners, watch for pretenders, and wait for a place. Let me close on a final note. Citizens will get a promotion.
I love Paul. I love the fact that he says, you know what, not only are we going to heaven, but let me just put the icing on the cake by saying this, who, speaking of Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it might be conformed to His glorious body according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself. The NSV, the new Skip version, when you get to heaven, this is getting an upgrade. You're going to get upgraded. Not only are you going to change locations, you're going to change looks. You know, people say, well, how am I going to look in heaven? Easy answer, better.
Much better. You're going to get the body you always dreamed of. Paul's word, you'll be transformed. Poll after poll that I've read has asked people this question. If you could change one thing about your life, what would it be? The typical answer is something to do with bodily appearance.
If I could change one thing about my life, I want to be shorter or taller or thinner or this or that. I would say hair color, but you can change that five times before the end of the day. They want to change something about their outward appearance. And this body image consciousness has even leaked into the young people.
Our kids are worried about it. There was a little boy named Johnny who always sucked his thumb and his mom wanted to break him of the habit. So one day he was sucking his thumb and she said, Johnny, what good thing could possibly be gotten from you doing that?
And he took his thumb out and held it up and he said, well, it is non-fattening. I suppose that's an upside. But one day your dream will come true. Every citizen of the kingdom of heaven will get a resurrected, glorified body that is better than any facelift, any skin cream, any Botox, any diet program, any facial reconstruction or stretching.
And it's all free. You'll be transformed. He will transform. Now notice what he says, our lowly body. So just think about this for a moment.
Especially you who are young and you're working really hard and looking really good and you work out, you're a personal trainer and you want to show the world how to do it right. I applaud you for that. Please keep us all in line. But you have but a moment to really enjoy that. The truth is your body is a lowly body. You don't believe me? Just wait. It won't take long to convince you.
Trust me. The King James is even stronger who will change our vile body. Or the NASB says our body of humility or our body of humiliation.
So enjoy it for now, but it is a lowly body. But notice verse 21, the word transformed. I'm drawing your attention to that because there's a word in Greek that he uses here and we get another English word from it. I'm going to say the Greek word and then you'll hear the English. Metascamatici is the word.
Transform. Metascamatici. We get the word schematic.
Did you hear it? Metascamatici. We get the word schematic so when you get to heaven, it's as if the upgrade you get will be a whole new schematic that affects inward and outward constitution, a whole renewed physical structure. At the resurrection, which will occur at the rapture of the church, you will get a resurrected body and it will be like Jesus' own resurrected body.
Notice what he says? That it will be conformed to His glorious body. Now when Jesus rose from the dead, He had new capabilities. We discover that when the disciples are in a room, the doors are locked and Jesus just appears in front of the disciples. Locked doors. He didn't crawl through the window. He didn't knock on the door. Let me in. I can't get in. He just showed up.
Hi. How did He do that? Well, He had a whole new capability that He didn't have before. This resurrected body was able to do that. And one day He was walking on the road to Emmaus and walking out several miles from Jerusalem, suddenly shows up in that upper room.
And then He's in Jerusalem, suddenly He shows up in Galilee. So you're going to have new capabilities in this new body. I did a whole series of messages on this.
I won't rehash all that. But imagine having a body that will never wear out. Imagine having a body that never gets tired, never gets exhausted. Imagine having a body that is not susceptible to disease, handicaps, atrophy, and aches and pains. Imagine having a body that never gains weight, never loses hair, never gets wrinkled. Hallelujah. Never sags or stoops.
That glorified, upgraded body is a guaranteed perk for every citizen of heaven. Benjamin Franklin, when he died, he was buried in Boston, Massachusetts. But interestingly, Benjamin Franklin wrote his own epitaph for when he died, years before he died. In fact, he revised it several times. So he must have thought a lot about it. Now this is not on his gravestone, but it is on a plaque at a wall nearby. His words. The body of Ben Franklin Printer, like the cover of an old book, its contents torn out and stripped of its lettering and gilding lies here.
Food for worms. Yet the work itself shall not be lost, for it will appear once more in a new and more elegant edition, corrected and improved by the author. What a beautiful way of saying this body, lowly body, is going to get an upgrade, be revised and improved by the author. So, summing it all up, look around for good examples to follow. Look out for imitations to avoid and look up for Jesus to return.
Final question. Are you sure you're a citizen? Are you sure your faith is personally in Jesus Christ alone? Have you trusted in Him?
Has there been a time in your life where you've made that, placed that trust in Him? Is your name written in the Lamb's Book of Life? That concludes Skip Heitzig's message from the series Technicolor Joy. Now we want to share about an exciting opportunity you have. A trip to Israel is a life changer.
Your Bible study will never be the same. Skip has lived in Israel and led tours many, many times. Here he is to invite you on his next tour. You know, there's always something new to see and experience in Israel, and I'm so excited to let you know that I'm taking another tour group to Israel next spring in 2022. You're in for an incredible time as we travel throughout Israel and experience the culture that's so unique to that country. We'll start on the Mediterranean Sea and head north, seeing places like Caesarea and Nazareth, the Sea of Galilee, and the Jordan River. We'll spend several days in and around Jerusalem and see the Temple Mount, Calvary, the Garden of Gethsemane, and the Mount of Olives, and much more. This remarkable itinerary is made richer with times of worship, Bible study, and lots of fellowship. Now, I've been to Israel a number of times over the years, and I can honestly say that visiting the places where the events of the Scriptures unfolded, where Jesus lived, taught, and healed, it just never gets old. I can't wait to see you in Israel. Start planning and saving now to tour Israel with Skip Heitzig. Information at inspirationcruises.com slash C-A-B-Q. That's inspirationcruises.com slash C-A-B-Q. Tomorrow, as we approach the 20th anniversary of the tragedies of 9-11, join Skip Heitzig as he discusses his experience at Ground Zero as a chaplain and what he has observed in the Middle East as a result of that world-shaking day. That's tomorrow on Connect with Skip. Make a connection Make a connection At the foot of the crossing Cast all burdens on his word Make a connection Connection Connect with Skip Heitzig is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never-changing truth in ever-changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-02 01:04:13 / 2023-09-02 01:14:38 / 10