Monday, February 16, 2009

What is a Pilgrim?

When we as Americans hear the word "pilgrim," we may think of the brave souls who ventured across the Atlantic Ocean on the Mayflower in 1620. After all, a pilgrim is someone who is traveling through a place and is on his way somewhere else. This could certainly apply to those on the Mayflower.

As followers of Jesus Christ, we are all pilgrims. This world is not our home. Paul tells us this in Philippians 3:20. Peter also makes this clear as he begins his first letter. In I Peter 1:1, Peter writes (NKJV), "Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the pilgrims of the dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia." Other translations use "exiles," "aliens," "strangers," "sojourners," and "temporary residents." Peter's point is that this world is not our home. As Christians, we should not feel at home here. Considering the persecution the recipients of this letter were facing, we can guess that they were not too comfortable here.

What about us? How comfortable are we in this world? If this world feels very welcoming and pleasant to us, what does that say about our walk with Christ?

The title of this blog (A Pilgrim's Progress) was inspired by John Bunyan's classic novel The Pilgrim's Progress. As Christian in that story was not comfortable in this world, may we not be comfortable here either.

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