John 18:35-37 (ESV)
Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.” Then Pilate said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.”
Romans 12:2 (ESV)
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Ephesians 2:19 (ESV)
So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God,
1 Peter 2:11 (ESV)
Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles [strangers and aliens] to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.
Jesus made it plain several times in His ministry and especially when He was being questioned by Pilate that His kingdom was not of this world. He said He could call down legions of angels to save Himself, but He did not, because His purpose was to sacrifice Himself.
Jesus told His disciples that He was going away to prepare a place for them [us] and that place will not be on THIS earth. It will be in a new creation. A new Heaven and a new Earth. Peter warns us to live as sojourners and exiles, not to get hooked on the things of this world, and to abstain from the things which drag us away from God.
Paul and Peter both recognized that this world is not our home. If we belong to Jesus, and Jesus’ Kingdom is not of this world, then why do we act as if this world is everything? We should focus on the kingdom to come. When this present world passes away like a worn out garment. Paul told us not to be conformed to this world, but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. This is done by daily study and prayer, spending time with Jesus.
My favorite band of all time, Petra, did a song called Not of This World. Following is a brief excerpt of the lyrics:
We are pilgrims in a strange land
We are so far from our homeland
With each passing day it seems so clear
This world will never want us here
We're not welcome in this world of wrong
We are foreigners who don't belong
We are strangers, we are aliens
We are not of this world
So we must remember, our job in this world is to bring people to Jesus, and to be about our Master’s business, so that when He returns to take us home, He will be pleased with us, and what we have done for Him. We will have gained interest with the talents He has loaned us.
Have a blessed day and I can only imagine what waits for us in the next world...
by Virgil Stripes