No truer words have been spoken in reference to Christians.
Peter clearly pointed out in the opening of his first letter that we are strangers here. Aliens in a land not our own.
In this vast, Christian diaspora the scattered and displaced belonging to God roam earth's surface until our final unification. Living in a land not our own.
Some, like Columbus, searching for a new land. Look up, I say. Yes, we explore the skies believing there is another frontier to call home. There is! Heaven. We occupy these temporal tents outside our homeland and search for a place of rest.
Entry doesn't require large sums of tax dollars; an expedition crew, or hi-tech equipment. We must pass through Jesus, the Christ and Son of God, to enter into the place of rest He is preparing for us.
When referring to the diaspora, "the scattering", the first thought for many might be the various Jewish dispersions in ancient history (by the Assyrians in 722 BC, Nebuchadnezzar in 597 and 586 BC or the Romans in 70 AD). Or you may think of the various deportations in numerous European, Asian, African, or Austrailian countries. Then, of course, there is the expulsion of the Native Americans from their tribal territories into the Indian diaspora of the Reservations.
I have learned from my research on the subject that the diaspora is the movement of a displaced or relocated population that shares a common ethnic identity yet maintains their traditions and religious practices.
In my view the modern Christian "nation" has some parallels to the Israeli nation. The ancient Israelites were often hated and mistreated by their captors. Today Christians are often rejected and looked down upon.
God used them to bring salvation to all nations as He does now in sending us out to share the Good News. Both the Israelites and the church being used by God in His eternal plan.
God used messengers, or prophets, to deliver truth and promise of restoration bringing hope to the multitudes in distant lands. Offering comfort and encouragement to those separated from their land of promise.
What did the dispersed need more than anything? A word from the Lord. Hope. Faith. In their distress in a foreign land they needed assurance that God was near. We must keep our longing for home with the Lord alive rather than meld into our respective societies.
Are our hearts prepared for the Day of Lord? Will we be counted among the diaspora and migrate to our eternal home?
As the gospel has been preached and the church has spread through the ages and across this globe we have brethren scattered abroad. Let's reach out to one another and to those wandering - lost and searching in God's diaspora - and share the Good News -- our Message from Home.
Jehovah God; A common bond unites your people, Jesus Christ. Help us remember our citizenship. Keep our hearts united in Him and grounded in Your everlasting kingdom as we journey here together. Amen.
The Sovereign LORD declares—
he who gathers the exiles of Israel:
"I will gather still others to them
besides those already gathered."