Know Your Rights
“But we are citizens of the state (commonwealth, homeland) which is in heaven…” Philippians 3:20
I’ve probably read over this scripture a thousand times, but a few days ago the word “citizen” hit me square between the eyes.
Do we really grasp what this means? When a Christian dies he/she will go home to heaven. We know that. We receive the inheritance promised… But citizenship starts now.
The moment our names are written down in heaven, we become a citizen of the city of God—once we’ve been documented, we get stamped with the Holy Spirit as verification of the transaction. The process is kind-of like becoming an American citizen… Except heaven is much more efficient!
“It’s in Christ that you, once you heard the truth and believed it (this Message of your salvation), found yourselves home free—signed, sealed, and delivered by the Holy Spirit. This signet from God is the first installment on what’s coming, a reminder that we’ll get everything God has planned for us, a praising and glorious life.” Ephesians 1:13-14
Got my heavenly visa, y’all!! Heeeeeyy!
- Citizenship –the state of being vested with the rights, privileges, and duties of a citizen.
- Citizen- a native or naturalized member of a state or nation who owes allegiance (loyalty, devotion) to its government and is entitled to its protection (distinguished from alien).
Now, being a citizen of heaven means we have rights, privileges, and duties. Do you know your rights? What about privileges? Are you aware of your Christian duties?
There are so many defeated Christians in bondage today simply because they don’t know their rights—And when Satan read off the list to them he fudged a word or two… It breaks my heart—they don’t realize they’re being bound by a completely twisted lie. Eventually the spirit of python will squeeze them dry of all hope, and they’ll give up on God. The lies of Satan become so much more real to them, and they begin believing that the story of Jesus was just another fairytale.
A few years ago– this person was me.
I had a dream emphasizing this truth last night—I was floating down a river and suddenly a monster popped up and said, “Boo!” making me get the heck out of dodge. Running in the opposite direction, I was ambushed by two men throwing knifes at me. Now planning to take the third and final path I had to chose from, I was once again halted by two more men who opened fire with pistols. I was completely cornered and there was nothing I could do except lay down and cover my head (y’all know—like in a school tornado drill).
That is—until I got tired of lying there. I simply got up, walked boldly over to the men with the guns, and gave them the eyebrow (a trick I learned from my mother– she likes to remind me of her authority as parent). They dropped their weapons and scrambled to get as far away from me as possible. I then was able to pick up the enemy’s weapons that were used against me to point right back at them. BOOM.
We need to study study study on what being a citizen of heaven really means. Why? Because heaven is open over the citizens that can be funnels of the Kingdom. This is the Christian mandate– to advance the Kingdom. I’ll post a few of the points I’m gathering so far; Feel free to comment below with more!
Rights & Privileges:
- Enter into the city of God as a brother/ sister/companion of Jesus (Hebrews 12)
- Angelic assistance (Hebrews 12,1:14)
- Through belief & obedience we have the right to enter rest (Heb 3:18,19)
- Power (Matt 10:1, Luke 9:1)
- i. Over demons
- ii. Over diseases
- Authority (Matt 9:6,8, 10:1, 28:18, Colossians 2:12)
- i. To heal
- ii. To cast out unclean spirits
- iii. To forgive
- Encouragement in Christ, consolation of love, fellowship with the Spirit, affection and mercy (Phil 2:1)
- Live life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ (Phil 1:27)
- i. Standing firm in one spirit
- ii. With one mind (soul)
- iii. Working side by side for the faith that comes from the gospel
- iv. Not being frightened in any way by opponents (Phil 1:27-28)
- v. Thinking the same way
- vi. Having the same love
- vii. Sharing the same feelings
- viii. Focusing on one goal
- ix. Humbly considering others as more important than ourselves
- x. Looking out for the interests of others (2:2-4)
- xi. Making our attitude like that of Christ Jesus (2:5-11)
- Be an ambassador (2 Cor 5:20)
- i. Proclaim the kingdom of God and heal the sick (Luke 9:2)
“But rather, you have come to Mount Zion, even to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem,and to countless multitudes of angels in festal gathering,
And to the church (assembly) of the Firstborn who are registered (written) [as citizens] in heaven, and to the God Who is Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous (the redeemed in heaven) who have been made perfect,
And to Jesus, the Mediator (Go-between, Agent) of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood which speaks [of mercy], a better and nobler and more gracious message than the blood of Abel [which cried out for vengeance].
So see to it that you do not reject Him or refuse to listen to and heed Him Who is speaking [to you now]. For if they [the Israelites] did not escape when they refused to listen and heed Him Who warned and divinely instructed them [here] on earth [revealing with heavenly warnings His will], how much less shall we escape if we reject and turn our backs on Him Who cautions and admonishes [us] from heaven?”