If you’re a Christian, you no longer belong to this world’s system. You belong to the Kingdom of God. You are like a person standing in a long line waiting for their paycheck. You patiently move up in line, seeing other people receiving their checks, but when it’s your turn, you receive only a blank stare and the words, “I’m sorry, you’re not in the system…next please.” That’s okay, Heaven is your reward.
If Christ is our hope in this life only, we deserve more pity than any other people. I Corinthians 15:19
Yes, the real benefit to a Christian is in the next life, and the next life is eternal. But there are benefits in this life too if we walk in faith – actively walking in the promises of God and enforcing Jesus’ prayer admonition of, ‘your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.’ Faith is a way of receiving Heaven’s new Kingdom AND a way of receiving some of the benefits of the new Kingdom here on earth. However, if you want to receive from the new Kingdom you’d better start playing by the rules of the new Kingdom, to which you now belong, and not by the old rules. That is why God gave His word so that we could renew our minds to the new ways of the new Kingdom.
Again, being rejected by the world’s system is a good thing, a very good thing. Now your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. Living is now based not on a temporary outward success, but rather, on an inward restoration of the heart; a restoration back into the very image of God. This of course, is good for our eternity but can seem not so good for our present. We are now a marked people for Christ. We are only visitors in this world. The Bible says that we are, ‘in the world but not of the world.’ We must now learn how to approach God for all our support. He understands though for He too was rejected. Matter of fact, His rejection is the reason for our rejection.
“Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master ‘ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also. John 15:20
“These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
He overcame the world so we could also overcome the world, through faith in Him. We do not have to wait for Heaven to receive blessings; we can receive them by faith in this world. He purchased our victory over the evil obstructions in this world.
For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith. (5) Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? I John 54, 5
It is not really us overcoming the world; it is our faith. The victory comes from God, but it does not come on its own. We must choose to walk in faith and in the authority of God’s word. Without faith we are in the worst of all conditions – we are no longer part of the world’s system, and yet we are not drawing upon the powers of the new Kingdom. Faithless living is a desperate existence in a spiritual no man’s land.
I recently witnessed a vivid example of this very thing. In Pakistan, many of the individuals labeled as Christians are not true born-again believing Christians, but rather they received the label by having Christian ancestors or simply by growing up in a Christian community. They are now forced to live as outcasts, separate from society, and are given the worst occupations, if they are given any at all. Yet, for all their sacrifice, they do not share in the benefit of Christ because they lack the knowledge to fully trust in Him, and the ability to receive from Him. Disappointment and hopelessness is their lot – disappointment with this world, and hopelessness for not personally knowing God’s world. Oh, how they need to hear the very thing I am teaching, that there is great benefit to the individual who knows their God, believes in Him, and receives the reward that comes through faith in His Name.
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33
And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19
Without faith we are in the worst condition – no longer part of the world’s system and yet not drawing upon the powers of the new Kingdom.