Why “Citizenship in Heaven” (Phil. 3:20) is not what you think it means

In this video I demonstrate that the ‘citizenship’ Paul is discussing in Phil. 3:20 is not about one’s Christian hope in the afterlife but rather about loyalties to a particular empire and its ruling savior/lord. Paul summons the Philippian Christians to place their citizenship with Jesus, the true savior and lord, who will descend out of heaven to consummate the empire (kingdom) of God.

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2 thoughts on “Why “Citizenship in Heaven” (Phil. 3:20) is not what you think it means

  1. I don’t think the Bible is as clear as you propose. For instance, Paul wrote about a “spiritual body” and mentioned it in ways that later Gospels like Luke and John spoke of as “not a spirit” at all. Paul also seems to indicate that the Kingdom of God will not be on earth but in heaven:

    2 Cor 5:1 “we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven…”

    Philip 3:20a “But our citizenship is in heaven…”

    Gal 4:26a “the Jerusalem which is above is free…”

    Paradise is in the third heaven (2 Cor 12:2-4).

    That is where the Christian elect will wind up in their “spiritual bodies,” to be in the company of Christ (1 Thes 5:9-10).

    Even in the non-Pauline letter to the Hebrews, chapter 12, Christians are expected to be live in the heavenly Jerusalem, with no mention of it coming down to a new earth. In fact the author of Hebrews mentions that the patriarchs are “foreigners and strangers on earth.” Heb. 11

    Paulʼs view resembles Philo of Alexandriaʼs, who also put heaven as the destination of the righteous after death. According to Philo: “And the proselyte… has received as a most appropriate reward a firm and sure habitation in heaven” (On reward and punishment”, ch. XXVI, 152) “looking upon the heavenly country in which they have the rights of citizens…” (On the confusion of tongues, ch. XVII).

    For much more see https://edward-t-babinski.blogspot.com/2015/06/the-apostle-paul-fanaticus-extremus-all_11.html

    Also see this post on Paul’s false prophecies of the Lord’s soon arrival. https://edward-t-babinski.blogspot.com/2015/06/the-apostle-paul-fanaticus-extremus-all.html

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