In his letter Paul stated that for to him, living is Christ and dying is gain.1 This statement is indeed very synchronous with what Lord Jesus stated about the Kingdom of Heaven. The Kingdom of Heaven is God’s government that is not centered on life on this earth. Prioritizing the Kingdom of Heaven means establishing the truth, namely how to behave remarkable just as Lord Jesus and have peace and joy that is not based on earthly things. This means, someone who is willing to put the kingdom of God has really been ready to die to the world. The world is no longer the objective. The world with all its bustle is a mean to learn how to be good citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven. All things pursued are solely for God’s interest.
Such life is a life like Paul said, “… have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God“.2 Indeed, not many people are willing to live in this way, but for those who were willing then they should be baptized. In this case, the baptism was a symbol of death.3 Therefore, if someone is not willing to die then he should not be baptized. This kind of death is the death that make us alive, because without such death experience, we will not experience the rise of a new life together with God. If someone dares to enter the struggle as true Christians like this, only then he can live the tremendous Christianity value that cannot be compared with any religion. As a result the fruit is, according to God’s promise, that everything will be added to us.4 The word everything here is not merely physical, but efforts to accumulate treasures in heaven, know the truth and serve Him.5 In this case, we can understand that someone can live the life of Christianity if he is really willing to seek first the Kingdom of God. Hence, how important it is to understand this verse correctly. It is a big mistake to say that this verse is a promise to obtain physical blessings! Rather, this verse implies that if someone seek first the Kingdom of Heaven, it will result in losing everything, where what is left for him is only the Kingdom of Heaven. This is an undeniable characteristic of someone’s life who truly has been saved. This is the true or original Christianity.
Christianity is not a religion for most people, it means that Christianity is a way of life that can only be put on by a handful of people who do not expect life happiness in the world. And indeed the happiness of the world is very limited. It is a foolishness if someone should sacrifice eternal things for temporary things or things that have temporary value. Not to expect life happiness in the world does not mean unhappy, rather, God will make us glad with everything that is with us.
As long as someone still hopes that the world can give a life that is complete, intact, happy, safe and comfortable, then he will never put on true Christianity. People who are already bound by a false life philosophy will be continuously twisted by it until it kills himself and many others. Such persons cannot follow Lord Jesus. Such Christianity is certainly a false one. But this is human nature in general. It is inherited by our parents to us and also can be absorbed from our world environment around us. The sacrifice of Lord Jesus at the cross wants to redeem us from this empty way of life.6 The meaningful way of life is to get our minds ready, remain vigilant (not to follow the world’s way) and set our hope completely on the grace that will be brought to believers when Lord Jesus Christ is revealed.7 That means, more than just struggling for all achievements to gain self happiness, a God’s child should live in obedience to God the Father and become holy in all of his conduct. 8
1) Philippians 1:21; 2) Colossians 3:3; 3) Romans 6:4; 4) Matthew 6:33; 5) Matthew 6:19-24; 6) 1Peter 1:18; 7) 1Peter 1:13; 8) 1Peter 1:14-16.