#faithbites #faithjourney Citizen
Today’s #faithbite is inspired by the President of the United States saying that he could end birthright citizenship by executive order. This post isn’t about that as I try to stay away from politics as much as possible. Instead, this will focus on what it means to be a citizen.
Merriam-Webster defines Citizen as: 1) an inhabitant of a city or town, 2A) a member of a state, 2B) a native or naturalized person who owes allegiance to a government and is entitled to protection from it, 3) a civilian as distinguished from a specialized servant of the state.
I want to focus on #1 and #2B. We all have a place we call home. Maybe it is the place we were born in or maybe it is the place we moved to and now is home. We love the land, the people, and our way of life. There are things that we want to change of course, but this is who we are. We work to defend it, protect it, and improve it. At the same time, we owe allegiance to the government and have expectations from that government. We want to be protected and ensure that we can live in our home. Not all governments fulfill that responsibility just as not all people show allegiance to a government. This is a two-way street.
All that being said, this applies to our faith as well. We have citizenship in the Kingdom of God. Whether we were born into it or baptized later, we became citizens. As we owe worship to God, we expect his protection.
In our times we have so much talk of the other. We find ways to keep ourselves separate from those people. Their language is different, their desires are different, they are not from here. But from a Christian point of view, we are all citizens of the same God. We have citizenship in heaven and are no longer strangers and aliens. We are all together in the worship of Christ.
By the definition above we owe allegiance to God. This is stated in both the First Commandment and in Matthew 22. There is one God that we should love and work for. We should follow his example in all that we do. We welcome those who are in need and love them. At the same time, we deserve protection from God as we are his citizens. 1 Corinthians 10:13 states it well that God will not let us be tempted beyond what we can bear. in 2 Thessalonians 3:3, the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect us from the evil one.
I believe that through these scriptures, and many more, we fit the definition of Citizens of the Lord.
Do you believe in the word of God? Do you believe we are all one family and have citizenship in his kingdom? If so, show that in all your actions and all your doings. Be one who welcomes those who need help. The Lord will protect you from the evil one, and that evil one is not in the family of God.
Lord, help me to be a productive citizen in your house. Let my words be your words and help others to find peace. Help us all to be better citizens for you and help to unify all of your people.