Lucia's Blog: "THIS WORLD IS NOT MY HOME"
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Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

"THIS WORLD IS NOT MY HOME"

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.”  
Matt. 6:19-20


Our lovely song, “This World Is Not My Home,” has a very special place in my heart.  It speaks of the faith that we must have in God’s promises.  Our song expresses how this earth filled with worldly cares is not our home, for we are just pilgrims on a journey.  The Lord has commanded us not to dwell on the things of this world but to set our minds on eternal things, our eternal home, which is heaven.  Likewise, our song urges us to lay up treasures in heaven, not on earth.  Let us consider God's point of view about our earthly treasures.

In Matthew 6:19-20, the Lord declared, 

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.”


Our hearts reveal our thoughts and our treasures.  If our thoughts dwell on the treasures of this earth, that is where our thoughts will constantly be.  But if our hearts dwell on our eternal home, our thoughts and actions will be directed toward heavenly things, God’s promises, and doing God’s will to please Him.  In Matthew 6:21, we have a reminder.  

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”


Although it is wonderful to enjoy the things that God has blessed us with here on this earth, we  Christians must acknowledge that our focus must not be on the things of this world but on the things of heaven.  If our focus is only on earthly things, we must examine our hearts and make sure that we put it in the right place.  Since God is the author of our blessings, we must purpose in our hearts to give Him the glory, remain humble, and focus only on Him and our heavenly home with Him one day.  


I.   WE MUST NOT REGARD THIS WORLD AS OUR HOME:

In 1 Peter 2:11, we are described as pilgrims and sojourners here on this earth.

“Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.”


Our song answers why the pilgrim Christian must not look upon this world as his final home.

Hebrews 11:13 tells us that God’s faithful followers understood this truth, and faithfully lived their lives without receiving God’s promises.  They lived by faith, for they were looking for something better beyond this life.

“These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth.”


  • Jesus wants us to lay up treasures in heaven. 

"And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, 'You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me."'  (Mk. 10:21)

"As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 18 They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, 19 thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life."  (1 Tim. 6:17-19)  


Jesus wants His followers not to lay up treasures on this earth but instead lay them up in heaven with the assurance that nothing will destroy them.

"Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.  22 'The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, 23 but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!"'  (Matthew 6:19-23


We must not lay treasures on earth and make this world our final home!  The pursuits of this life must not be our priority. Why do many Christians reject this truth? They sing “This World Is Not My Home” but do not obey the principles by which it is founded.  Sadly, many “Christians” have little interest in spiritual matters because they are more interested in worldly things, not the things of the Lord.

Jesus told His disciples, 

“If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done.”  (Matthew 16:24-27)


We must not place on hold our heavenly obligations while we pursue our worldly desires. What is most important, heaven or earth? 

  1. We must not put the Lord on hold while we pursue our desires and earthly pursuits.  
  2. Our desires must be the pursuit of our Lord.  


  • Our song reminds us that our citizenship is in heaven.
"But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself."  (Phil. 3:20-21)

And that we are "pilgrims,"  that is, "one passing through."  
"Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, 12 having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation."  (1 Pet. 2:11-12)


  • The angels beckon us to continue on our journey toward heaven’s open door to receive these treasures.  

"Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents."  (Lk. 15:10)


Truly, the angels rejoice when a sinner repents!  They want us to go to heaven.  Our song reminds us to set our affections on things above, not on things of this earth.

"If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth."  (Col. 3:1-2)


II.   OUR SAVIOR PARDONED US IN HEAVEN: 

The phrase "They’re all expecting me" of our second stanza refers to the redeemed of all ages.  They are that great cloud of witnesses who cheer us on and sing praises to God in the spiritual realm.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God."  (Heb. 12:1-2)

"After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, 'Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!' 11 And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12 saying, 'Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen.'  13 Then one of the elders addressed me, saying, 'Who are these, clothed in white robes, and from where have they come?' 14 I said to him, 'Sir, you know.' And he said to me, 'These are the ones coming out of the great tribulation. They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.'"  (Rev. 7:9-14)


However, there is a much greater blessing of heaven, our Savior, who has pardoned us and promised to be there waiting for us.   So we must be looking forward to heaven. You see, the faithful patriarchs of old looked forward to God’s promises.  They acknowledged that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. God is preparing for them and us, His faithful, a heavenly city.

"These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14 For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. 15 If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city."  (Heb. 11:13-16)


  • "My Savior pardoned me, and now I onward go."

My Savior pardoned ME? What about everybody else? Although Jesus’ sacrifice is personal, it is also universal. 

“For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men” (Titus 2:11). 


Jesus has brought salvation through His sacrifice to all men.  God’s Grace applies to all men and women who obey His Son’s Gospel of salvation.  God can pardon our sins when we obey Him and His commandments.

"Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. 9 And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him."  (Heb. 5:8-9)

“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. 14 For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few  ( Matt. 7:13-14). 


Our Savior has promised to take us through, even though we are weak and poor and sinful, for He offers salvation, forgiveness to all men.  Otherwise, there would be no hope of heaven, for all have sinned and deserve due punishment.

"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."  (Rom. 3:23)

"For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."  (Rom. 6:23)


All Christians must be working out their own salvation with fear and trembling, doing God’s will even while we’re pressing on toward the mark of the prize of the high calling of God.

"Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.  14 Do all things without grumbling or disputing, 15 that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain."  (Phil. 2:11-16)

"Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."  (Phil. 3:12-14)


III.   OUR LOVED ONES WHO DIED IN THE LORD WILL BE IN HEAVEN: 

Although some of our loved ones (relatives, friends, and brethren) will not be in heaven, those who died faithfully in the Lord will indeed be in heaven.  It is one of those things, we Christians, eagerly look forward to!

"But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. 14 For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep. 15 For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord,[a] that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord."  (1 Thess. 4:13-17).  


Those beloved saints who are in heaven make heaven a place for which we earnestly groan to be clothed with our habitation.

“For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, 3 if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked. 4 For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened—not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. 5 He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee”  (2 Cor. 5:1-8). 


  • "Waiting now for me in heaven’s open door."

The phrase "waiting now for me in heaven’s open door" raises the question of whether we can view the departed saints as being in heaven or not.  I believe the souls of the righteous dead are in Paradise in the Hadean realm awaiting the second coming of Christ, a universal resurrection, and final judgment before going to heaven, the heavenly city, our habitation itself.  Nevertheless, the truth is that the saints who have died have gone to be with Christ and are in some way waiting for us if we die faithfully in the Lord also.

“I am hard-pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better”  (Phil. 1:23).


IV.   ETERNAL LIFE AND VICTORY WILL BE IN HEAVEN:

  • “Up in glory land, we’ll live eternally.” 

In the world to come, we shall receive eternal life.

"Who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life."  (Mk. 10:30)  

 

  • "Just up in glory land we’ll live eternally; The saints on every hand are shouting victory!"

Victory belongs to Christ, for He has won the battle and obtained the victory. God has given us victory through Jesus.  Jesus defeated sin through His sinless life and arose from the dead, destroying death’s power over us. God showed victory over death through Jesus, and He gives that victory to everyone who belongs to Him.

"Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain." (1 Corinthians 15:57)


When Jesus, our Lord, overcame sin, He took away the power that death had. Death will be swallowed up in victory when our perishable bodies put on the imperishable! The resurrection of the dead is pictured as the ultimate destruction of death. The hope of the resurrection must motivate us to live faithfully, for it is our main foundation for godly and righteous living. It motivates our actions and is our vital foundation for Christian living. Thus we must be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, for we know that our work in Him is not in vain.

"I tell you this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51 Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. 53 For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:  'Death is swallowed up in victory.'  55 'O death, where is your victory?  O death, where is your sting?'  56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain."'  (1 Cor. 15:50-58)


When Jesus returns to take us home, death will be swallowed up in victory, and all the faithful saints on every hand will be shouting victory (1 Cor. 15:50-57).  Oh, what a wonderful day that will be!!  

The heart of the Gospel “in which you stand” is the resurrection

  1. The resurrection is what keeps us standing firm, for it gives us the strength to endure, be steady, and be faithful. 
  2. Our hope of the resurrection is what keeps us immovable in our trials and suffering. 
  3. The hope of the resurrection takes away our fear of death. 
  4. God will ultimately have victory over Satan, sin, and death. He proved it through His Son when He raised Him from the dead and exalted Him. 


  • “The songs of sweetest praise drift back from heaven’s shore.” 
The songs of sweetest praise that drift back from heaven's shore invite us to press onward and endure till the end.

“Then I saw in the right hand of him who was seated on the throne a scroll written within and on the back, sealed with seven seals. 2 And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming with a loud voice, ‘Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?’ 3 And no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look into it, 4 and I began to weep loudly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to look into it. 5 And one of the elders said to me, ‘Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.’  And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, with seven horns and with seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. 7 And he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne. 8 And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. 9 And they sang a new song, saying, ‘Worthy are you to take the scroll  and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God     from every tribe and language and people and nation, 10 and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth.’  11 Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, 12 saying with a loud voice, ‘Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!’  13 And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, ‘To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!’  14 And the four living creatures said, “Amen!” and the elders fell down and worshiped.’”  (Rev. 5:8-14)


Therefore, we must stand in the Gospel, always abounding, that is, overflowing in the work of the Lord without any excuses, without taking any vacation from His work or without ceasing to do what we must do as His servants. There is no room to say, “I have done my part.” We don’t stop working for the Lord because of our trials or for any other reason. Nothing must stop us from abounding in the Lord’s work, for if we do that, we belittle the Grace of God seen in Jesus’ resurrection. Remember that our work in the Lord is not in vain or a waste of time. The time that we invest in His work is not a waste, for it is essential and has meaning and value to Him! He is faithful and will reward us for doing a valuable and important work for Him in His vineyard!  Our reward will be heaven and eternal life.  


CONCLUSION: 

“This world is not my home, I’m just a passing thru.”  


We are just passing through this life and very quickly.  James 4:14 states.

“What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”


We have been given just a short life to live on this earth.  Thus we must make heaven our home and foremost goal in life. Jesus died on the cross for us to give us a second chance to be forgiven of our sins and be with Him eternally in heavenHe did not have to do this, and yet He did!  Because of His cruel death, He can pardon us our sins and provide us the opportunity to be with him in heaven.   And though we are weak and sinful men, by God’s Grace, we can be strengthened through our Savior and receive God’s rich blessings in heaven as long as we remain faithful to Him, making heaven our home and not this world.   

The chorus verse of this song, 

“And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.”  


The chorus reminds us to lay up treasures in heaven, set our affections on things above, and press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:14).

Satan is always trying to ensnare us with earthly pleasures and troubles.  God wants His faithful children to not lose sight of His promise and be consumed with earthly cares.  Our constant prayers and fellowship with other saints of like precious faith supply us with strength to prevent temptations.  God’s promise to us of an eternal home with Him must motivate us and give us peace.  God’s faithful saints must acknowledge that this world’s cares and troubles are only temporary.  

Indeed, this earth is not our “home,” for we are eagerly longing and waiting for a heavenly home, our habitation.   Thus we must proclaim the Gospel, the good news, to those who have not obeyed the Gospel and do not have that hope of an eternal homeIf we haven’t met the conditions that God has revealed in the Gospel,  heaven will not be our home.  In His Word, God has already stated what we must do to be justified before Him in this life and receive our eternal hope of glory.

"For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries. 28 Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses. 29 How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has trampled underfoot the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know him who said, 'Vengeance is mine; I will repay.' And again, 'The Lord will judge his people.' 31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God."'  (Heb. 10:26-31


Therefore, we must determine to serve Him faithfully here on earth, teaching and sharing His message to the lost to go to heaven, helping others, and doing His will in this life. But while we are preparing to go to heaven, we must acknowledge daily that "this world is not my home."

May each of us live every day, acknowledging that  “this world is not my home.”  May we engrave those words in our hearts, remembering God’s faithful promise to those who believe in Him and do His will.


Luci


This world is not my home, I’m just a passing through;
My treasures are laid up Somewhere beyond the blue.
The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

They’re all expecting me, and that’s one thing I know;
My Savior pardoned me, and now I onward go.
I know He’ll take me through though I am weak and poor,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

I have a loving mother up in glory land;
I don’t expect to stop until I shake her hand.
She’s waiting now for me in heaven’s open door,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

Just up in glory land we’ll live eternally;
The saints on every hand are shouting victory!
Their songs of sweetest praise drift back from heaven’s shore,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

Chorus,

O Lord, you know I have no friend like You;
If heaven’s not my home then, Lord, what will I do?
The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.




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