by Dr. Charles Stanley
Monday October 25, 2004
Our Dual Citizenship
Sometimes we hear people say, "I don't believe in mixing religion and politics." But for a follower of Jesus Christ, it is impossible to exclude God from any area of life. This holds true even for "politics," which in Greek refers to the behavior of citizens of a country.
Paul realized his rights and privileges as a citizen of heaven extended to earth, and we, as God's children, likewise have dual citizenship. Being part of God's kingdom means countless privileges: we are related to the Father, we have Jesus s our personal Savior, and we know the forgiveness He offers. What's more, we have access to all the promises of Scripture as well as to the very throne room of God. There are also responsibilities: obedience, worship, evangelism, and support for the work of the church. In addition, we are obligated as Christ - followers to be good citizens of our earthly country. That means we must become involved in the life of our nation-praying for its leaders, educating ourselves about candidates' views, and exercising our right to vote.
We also have the obligation to live out life the way God designed it to be. In Matthew 5:13-16, Jesus says believers are salt and light - they are to be the means by which the culture is penetrated, flavored, preserved, healed, and rescued from the darkness. It does no good to keep the light hidden or to allow the salt to lose its flavor; God is glorified when believers live out their "saltiness" and "brightness" before a watching world. (v. 16) Are you letting your light shine?
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