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We Must Live as Sojourners

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Jordan Chamblee Engage Magazine MORE

If you are a follower of Christ, while the people around you struggle to find their place in the world, you already know where you belong. And it isn’t here.

This isn’t your home. You’ve been adopted into the family of God. Though you are in the world, He has declared that you are not “of it” (John 17:14). You are a sojourner, one who belongs to one country but finds himself living in another (1 Peter 2:11). You’re like Abraham who was searching for a promise he wouldn’t see in his lifetime (Hebrews 11:9).

Living as a sojourner is difficult. You’re faced with the decision when you wake every morning up to either live as a citizen of heaven or of the world. You’re surrounded on all sides by the world’s systems, culture, and expectations, and you have a natural tendency to want to blend in. But God has called you to obey. He has called you to live in this world, but to live by the laws and customs of heaven.

What does this life look like? Take a look at 1 Peter 1:13-22. 

A hopeful, heavenward mindset.

Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ … He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God” (v. 13, 20-21).

Live in the reality of Christ’s return and be ready for it. Put away all things that distract you or cause Christ to be less interesting to you. Look forward to the certainty of His return and let that hope change the way you live.

A life of obedience and holiness.

“… As obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, ‘Be holy, for I am holy’” (v. 14-16).

You’ve been adopted into another family, so you have to live by that family’s rules. Examine yourself and pray over things in your life that you’re not sure about. If anything in your life bothers your conscience, it might be worth sacrificing out of love and obedience to God.

A life of reverence.

And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear; knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (v. 17-19).

The life you live now, redeemed and without fear of condemnation, was paid for by nothing less than the death of God. It was that expensive. You weren’t bought with a few million dollars. You weren’t bought with any kind of finite currency. You were bought with God, for God, and by God. You cannot take this lightly. Many churchgoers are comfortable making jokes about salvation, Christian life, or Christ Himself; but that shouldn’t be something you’re comfortable with. You owe Him so much that every movement you make should glorify Him. Be careful with His reputation and the gift He gave you.

Love for one another.

Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart…” (v. 22).

Your brothers and sisters in Christ were also bought with the blood of Christ, so your bond with them and theirs with you is stronger than any other. The fellowship that flows between you as a family should reflect this with love. Loving one another as Christ loved you, with a pure heart and pure motives, is a command.

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