I think most of us in our times of quiet and rest, have considered a place or people we love and though we are physically not there, our minds and hearts are transported to that place. When these thoughts occupy our minds for an extended period of time it affects how we approach everything in our day.
An easy example of this is the young person who is anticipating going out on an adventure. It may be weeks and months away from the actual event, but the joy and anticipation of it supersede everything that crosses their path. Those around them have to try to wrestle that individual back to the current moment to contend with issues of the day, but as hard as they might try, there is no hope of doing so, because this youngster is already there in that destination taking in the experience.
I am able to do all things through him who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:13 (CSB)
Why is this? Why is it that we find the capability to exceed our means of function despite circumstances that rage around us? How is this possible? All things? Really?
Paul sounds a bit like that youngster we were talking about, doesn’t he?
That’s exactly why he does and for the same reason, we should as well.
Our perspective is skewed
We are children, despite our age. We spend our infancy in a material world that from our perspective seems to be all that there is. There appears to be nothing else looking from the inside out because our view is obstructed by our flesh and our circumstance.
The thing is, we are not temporal beings. Our being is housed currently in a temporal body that is riddled with sin and corruption. We are blinded by the lies and deceit that is in the physical world.
For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I will know fully, as I am fully known.
1 Corinthians 13:12 (CSB)
What does this mean for the Christian?
What it means for the follower of Jesus Christ is that we are already home with Jesus. We’ve made that transition from death into life eternal and while we still exist in the physical world, our being has been transported to the heavenly realm and we are seated with the angels.
He also raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavens in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might display the immeasurable riches of his grace through his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 2:6-7 (CSB)
We are just like that youngster anticipating the upcoming adventure. We are already there. We should be excited and taking in the wonder of a life lived with the Creator. This world keeps trying to bring us back to its reality, but our reality is in the heavens with Jesus!
Read this verse again slowly and take in what it is saying. He has “raised us up” …
We know that we have passed from death to life because we love our brothers and sisters. The one who does not love remains in death.
1 John 3:14 (CSB)
“We have passed from death to life”, it has already taken place. We are no longer in the place we once were. We now occupy a different position in eternity, we are in fact ‘seated in the heavens’ with Christ Jesus.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, and see, the new has come!
2 Corinthians 5:17 (CSB)
“The old has passed away, and see, the new has come!” What was before is no more, we have been given a new spiritual life that begins the very moment we surrender our lives to the one who is responsible for making us in the first place.
Did you pick up on why Christ raised us up? I included the seventh verse in the quote because without we just see the act of raising us up and not the reason why he does so. “That in the coming ages he might display the immeasurable riches of his grace through his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.”
We are already home! We are already there. Our eternal existence has crossed from death into life and we are seated in the heavens with Christ Jesus. If we see it in the scripture and we believe that the scripture is the infallible Word of God, then we are GONE from this earthly existence and we are in fact present with the Lord right this very moment. “See, the new has come!” We are already home!
What does it mean for everyone else?
Unfortunately, we all are eternal beings. We were designed that way by our creator. The choices we make while we are present in this physical world, determine where our eternal residence will be.
We’ve already talked about those who have surrendered themselves to Jesus, but for those who haven’t, they have an ever-present anticipation of what is coming for them as well.
Have you noticed some people are just angry and hateful? I can’t be certain of this, because I find no scriptural reference to back it up, but I tend to believe this rage comes out of having a premonition of where their eternal destination is. It would stand to reason if we are able to experience the eternal component of our being seated with Jesus in heaven, that those outside of the grace of Jesus may well have a premonition of where their destination is. Regardless of them being cognizant of it or not, it is a possibility, that they are experiencing the dread of being in their eternal home, as well.
It would explain some of the seemingly unjustified anger and hate.
It would also, in some way clarify the euphoric experience that is so common among those who have given their lives to Jesus, right at the moment of surrender. If the contrast between this physical existence and our heavenly existence were not enough, can you imagine the difference between a premonition of eternal doom and that heavenly existence?
Now I am coming to you, and I speak these things in the world so that they may have my joy completed in them.
John 17:13 (CSB)
Jesus said these words. He came to us, talking about the relationship he and his Father wants to have with each and every one of us. Why? Because he wants our joy to be complete. He wants us to be seated in the heavens with him. He wants a relationship with us. He wants us home, with him!
We can and do experience that joy when we have surrendered our lives to Christ. We are, “Already Home!”
In His Grace,