A Way Into Heaven Before You Die (Colossians 3:1-4)
The legalists arrived at a spiritual apex one way, the mystics a different one, and the ascetics another. All of them had something in common though, they weren’t looking for their fulfillment in Christ. One would do and do and do a whole bunch, the other would seek after religious experiences, and another would deny himself of much of earth’s pleasure. Ironically, all of these were still worldly. People claiming to be so out-of-touch with the world were still operating on the world’s horizontal plane.
The spiritual fulfillment we have doesn’t come from anything on earth. Ours is found in a heavenly existence that we receive in Christ. We believers have already escaped the corruption of this world (2 Pet 1:4). Jesus has raised us up to sit with Him in heavenly places (Eph 2:6) and have our citizenship in heaven (Philip 3:20). So since that is where our spiritual existence is, that is also where our focus should be.
What changes we believers into what the Lord wants us to be is our constant attention on the Person of Jesus Christ. By looking unto Him and beholding Him, we are transformed into His image (Heb 12:2; 2 Cor 3:18). By putting our minds on Jesus, we become in practice who we already are in position. In Christ is the fulfillment of everything that legalism, mysticism, and ascetism would say they have to offer. And we’re already risen with Christ as believers, which is why we can and should be looking toward the Lord, Who is in heaven. The Lord Jesus Christ is all we need, so the other things really are a distraction.
Whatever it is that people think they can accomplish through the worldly means of legalism, mysticism, and ascetism, will be completed through Jesus Christ. And as believers, we shouldn’t think much of those avenues to spirituality, because we already became dead to them when our life became hid in Christ. As a matter of practice, we should stop looking to those worldly means of fulfillment and look to its only place, that is, in heaven where Jesus is. Staying caught up with the Lord is what will give us all that we will ever need or desire.