We are known on earth by our citizenship. Even though this is usually concerned about the nation we are born or live in; Christians need to be conscious about their better citizenship. It should reflect in their attitudes and behavior and planning for life and life to come.
Paul (ref. Philippians) wrote about people whose mind were on earthly things who lived as the enemies of the cross of Christ; and then said: “But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await from there, the Lord Jesus.”
So a heavenly citizenship affects our hope of the second coming of the Lord Jesus.
The Bible makes it clear that God has a prepared a city for His people–the Heavenly Jerusalem. This was the city Abraham looked forward to when he left his country (ref. Hebrews). He lived as a stranger in tents in the promised land because he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.
So a heavenly citizenship affects our faith and how we live as pilgrims on earth.
In the Book of Colossians, Paul commanded to “set your hearts on things above.” He said this because we have been raised with Christ and our life is now hidden with Christ in God. And Christ is now seated at the right hand of God. In other words, we belong to heaven as much as Christ belongs there.
We are already there in Christ in a spiritual sense even as Christ is already there in a real sense. So he wants us to set our minds not on earthly things. That means that we have to put to death whatever belongs to our earthly nature.
So a heavenly citizenship affects our life by urging us to part ways with sinful ways of our past and live holy lives today.
Jesus too had something to say about money that is directly associated with citizenship. See, when we are citizens of a country we have our transactions done in the currency of that country. This is a common practice. Our economy is influenced by our citizenship.
So Jesus said: Do not store up treasures on earth. He gave the reason too: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” So He said: “Store up for yourselves treasures in heaven.” There moth and rust do not destroy nor can thieves break in and steal.
So a heavenly citizenship affects how we spend money and store up our treasures. It calls us to be wise and heavenly-minded stewards of whatever resources that God has given us.
Finally, as a citizenship brings privileges, it also brings responsibilities. A true citizen is patriotic. So too should we be. The main responsibility of a citizen of heaven is to proclaim the name of his King to others. This is the good news.
And you are the King’s Ambassadors telling the world to come to the King and find peace with Him. But when others try to stop you from doing so, you need to ask yourself and them this question: “Judge for your yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God. For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”
So a heavenly citizenship affects how we speak. Because we are given a great responsibility of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace. A heavenly citizen should not fail to do this duty which is his highest privilege and utmost responsibility.