That Critical Two-World View

“You are so heavenly minded that you are of no earthly good!”  That used to be a common come-back to religious type folks from non-religious type folks.  Aside from the fact that no such person really exists (ones who are too heavenly minded), it is not something anyone really wants to be like anyway. After all, who wants to be fundamentally useless in this life. But the people who live the very best in this present culture are those who look carefully at this world we live in while keeping an eye towards heaven, where the Savior is going to come from (Philippians 3:20-21). This is the perspective of the best of the best.  It keeps life and the issues of life in the proper perspective.

And this brings me to the ongoing debates and hostilities that are spreading like the proverbial wild fire in our country. There is seemingly no end to the issues: a Supreme Court appointee, illegal immigrants, upcoming elections, and, of course everyone’s favorite, Vladimir Putin. In all of these matters and others, we as believers in Jesus Christ we have something to offer our culture; something that brings what is the very best to mankind.  It is not that we are amazingly brilliant or smarter than the average bear, it is because the Creator God gave the rulebook and game plan for life. And He has made it possible for people to live (as Jesus phrased it), an abundant life by following what He had said. This is not a denominational or religious thing but a humankind thing. Because of this, believers are to engage the culture we live in and contribute as best we can.

The truth is, however, that we look ahead for something far superior to anything being proposed in Washington DC or expounded on any university campus.  We look ahead to the coming of King Jesus who, as a benevolent dictator, will bring in the epitome of full and abundant living.  He will bring in peace between men and nations as well as peace with the Lord Himself.  There will be significant prosperity for all; in the language of the Bible, every person will sit under their own vine and fig tree (we may not be into vines and fig trees but the point is that life is going to be very enjoyable and prosperous). Living will be characterized by full joy and there will be an enhanced knowledge that all will possess. The characteristics of the reign and the magnificence of King Jesus rule over all the earth are simply amazing. 

But coming back to the present situation which is not so amazing.  The reality is that man’s governments will never be able to accomplish what the rule of King Jesus will accomplish.  The democratic republic that we have in America has its flaws to be sure.  But the concepts found in this form of government have some roots back in the Scriptures.  For example, the Founding Fathers clearly knew Deuteronomy 17 and its principles can be observed in dozens of places in America’s founding documents.  Those Millennials today, and others as well, who imagine that Marxism (or whatever name one might want to use) is the way to go, seem unaware that it has never worked at any time or in any place.  So many of the ideas found in this form of government violate so many of the rules that the Creator put into place.

So as believers intelligently dialogue (without screaming and being uncivil) with others, we do have valuable contributions to make.  But the believer must also keep intact a two-world view: living well in this world while keeping an eye on the world to come.  Our ultimate hope is not in the direction that Washington DC heads towards, but in the One who will come back to this planet and will establish the long awaited, and oft prophesied, rule over all the earth (Psalm 2). Keep your focus.