“…their glory is in their shame, their minds are set on earthly things.”
— Philippians 3:19
One of the sad things about our time is the fact that shame seems to have become almost extinct. When did you ever hear anyone say, “You should be ashamed”? We have so many people today that glory in their shame, that boast in their shame, that proclaim their shame publicly, and it is tragic that today people glory in the very things that they should be ashamed of.
And “their minds are set on earthly things.” That, I think, is sort of the bottom line of it all because their hearts and minds are not in heaven but simply upon this earth, and if we do not have that upward calling in mind we are going to mind earthly things. Paul says our citizenship is in heaven. The Greek word we translate as citizenship is the word from which we get politics or policy. We should remember that we are citizens of heaven.
This was particularly apropos to the Philippians because Philippi, though in Macedonia, was a Roman colony. It was attached to the Roman Empire, since they had been granted by Caesar Roman citizenship, which was to be devoutly desired. They were citizens of Rome. They were citizens of Rome, even as we are citizens of heaven and most particularly of the new Jerusalem, the heavenly city. That is where our true citizenship is.
We may be involved, rightly so, and concerned about the politics and citizenship of this world, but we need to remember ultimately we are citizens of heaven; thus, we naturally are repulsed at people glorying in their shame.
Heavenly Father, You are pure and holy, and we live among a twisted and perverse generation. Help us to be more grieved when we see people flagrantly breaking Your commandments and are proud of it. Give us the strength to choose the hard right over the easy wrong…
BY GOD’S STRENGTH, WE CAN LIVE
IN THIS WORLD AS CITIZENS OF HEAVEN.