Most countries have foreign interests that often include trade, national security, etc. Governments typically send officials to countries with aligned interests to represent them in discussions and negotiations. Those officials are usually citizens, and as citizens, they have inherent rights and privileges. However, as official representatives in a foreign land, they also have authority – the right to exercise power – on behalf of their home country. The best example of such an official is an ambassador. Often resident in a foreign land, an ambassador speaks on behalf of his government – stating its position on issues and defending its interests with the knowledge that he has their full backing.
One of the fundamental tenets of Christianity is the notion that every believer becomes a citizen of another country by faith [John 17:14, 16, Colossians 1:13]. I didn’t understand until recently that this fact had the same implications as becoming a national of any country on earth. In fact, anyone who confesses Jesus as Lord is essentially declaring their foremost allegiance to the kingdom of God before any earthly nation [Romans 10:9, Philippians 3:20]. Furthermore, every earthbound citizen of heaven is an ambassador [Mark 16:15-18, Matthew 28:19-20], commissioned to reconcile unbelievers to God [2 Corinthians 5:21]. So, we’re entitled to the rights and privileges befitting our status as citizens of heaven, which we experience by faith through the promises of God [2 Peter 1:4]. Then, as kingdom ambassadors, we have also been authorised to represent the King’s interest here on earth [Luke 10:19].
It takes spiritual wisdom and understanding to grasp the implications of being a believer [Colossians 1:9]. Unfortunately, many of us only mentally assent to these tenets of faith, and they rarely seep into the innermost parts of our being to become our reality. As a result of ignorance or unbelief, many of us seldom experience our ambassadorial authority or the outworking of the rights and privileges of our heavenly citizenship. For instance, the Bible – the constitution of our home country that includes God’s sworn commitments to us – says that we have all we need for life and godliness [2 Peter 1:3]. That verse implies that citizens of God’s kingdom should lack nothing they need on earth because there is no insufficency in their home country – a principle supported by several passages [Matthew 6:31-33, Ephesians 1:3]. Is this your lived experience?
I posit that one of the main reasons many Christians rarely experience the manifestation of our God-given rights and privileges is that we lack the mindset of an ambassador [Philippians 2:5]. In many ways, we think like refugees who are at the mercy of their host country. We don’t demand what is ours because we often don’t know what rightfully belongs to us. We don’t exercise our authority over circumstances that mock the reality of our home country because we doubt the veracity of God’s promises. Contrast that mindset with an earthly ambassador from a wealthy, powerful nation. He doesn’t cower in adversity or before an enemy. He knows that as long as his interests align with his government’s agenda, they will demonstrably back him whenever he requires their assistance. That assurance makes him bold and confident as he fulfils his responsibilities and executes his duties in the name of his government.
If that is true of an earthly ambassador, how much more believers were sent into the world by King Jesus? All too often, our unbelief causes us to push aside God’s agenda to pursue the very things we’re already entitled to as citizens of heaven [Matthew 6:33]. As such, we don’t engage fully with those sent to equip us for our mission [Ephesians 2:10, 4:11-14]. Consequently, we lack the knowledge and mental transformation needed to discern the will of our King and take appropriate action in the situations we encounter [Romans 12:2]. Scripture asserts that we’re bona fide members of the household of God [Ephesians 2:19], and for too long many of us have lived in a different reality. I believe the time has come for us to arise and take our rightful place [Isaiah 60:1-5, Matthew 5:16].
I pray that every believer reading this blog will reprioritise their ambassadorial call and embrace the truth of who God says we are. The Bible says we’re God’s adopted sons and daughters and co-heirs with Jesus to His inheritance [Ephesians 1:5, Romans 8:14-17]. We’re also individually known by the King [Jeremiah 1:5], and He loves each of us greatly [Jeremiah 31:3]. So, He would never send us to represent Him and abandon us [Hebrews 13:5, Psalm 34:7]. We can speak directly to the King without any intermediaries at any time – confident that whatever we ask in His name, He will do based on His integrity and love for us [John 14:13]. The King also possesses infinite power, wealth, wisdom and might to accomplish what He wills [Revelation 5:12]. So, nothing is impossible for Him [Matthew 19:26].
With the turmoil and chaos in our world, it’s paramount for Jesus’s ambassadors to take up their mandates [Daniel 11:32]. If like me, many of these truths haven’t traversed from your head to your heart yet, and though you know them, you don’t possess the revelation that brings an unshakable conviction in your Christian walk, I have good news. The King anticipated this and left instructions. He said that if we continue (remain, abide) in His word, it will eventually transform our mindset [John 8:31-32]. When it does, we will do incredible things in His name as we do our part to advance the interests of His kingdom on earth [John 15:5-16]. A great reward awaits you and me if we serve the King well and reconcile many to Him [Daniel 12:3].