We are no longer of this world, we are aliens. We long for the city whose builder and maker is God. We are citizens of his kingdom. "...The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you." (Luke 17:20-21)
Definition of alien - anyone who does not belong in the environment in which they are found
Jesus said, "They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world." And he prayed, "Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world." "Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;" (John 17:16-18, 20) Jesus said we are not of this world any more than he is of this world.
This is not our kingdom any more than it is his. Just as the father sent him into the world so he has sent us. We must crucify the flesh. The body of the flesh that loves the world and the things of it, it can not receive the things of the Spirit. "...There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body." (1 Corinthians 15:44) Until we have put to death that body of flesh as Paul said, "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me:.."(Galatians 2:20) we will not be able to fully comprehend what the Lord said. "...the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." (1 Corinthians 2:14) Peter said we were, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever." (1 Peter 1:23)
This is a spiritual rebirth, quicken by the word of God. Peter was there when Jesus spoke of this seed in the parable of the sower in Mark the 4th chapter. "And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear...Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables" (Mark 4:9,11)
Jesus was speaking to them of the Kingdom of God and explained the parable to them. "And he said unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables? The sower soweth the word." (Mark 4:13-14)
The seed is the word of God and he is the sower. Most of the seed did not grow up and produce fruit. It is amazing to read the reasons why. Some believed Satan rather than the word of God that was sown. Others did not want to suffer afflictions or persecution that would have caused them to grow strong having deep roots. Others cared about the things of this world. (Mark 4:19) "And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful." The Amplified Verse reads, "Then the cares and anxieties of the world and distractions of the age, and the pleasure and delight and false glamour and deceitfulness of riches, and the craving and passionate desire for other things creep in and choke and suffocate the Word, and it becomes fruitless."
As Jesus said in verses 9 and 12, it takes ears to hear, and eyes to see.
Many that are in this state where the word has been choked and is unfruitful, they don't even realize it. When I was still in the "Christian" religious system, they said "Do not to be so heavenly minded that you are no earthly good" But by his grace, my Lord called me out to have a real relationship with him instead of one that is filtered through man's ideas of who they want God to be. He has caused me not to want to be part of this world. Consequently, the world seems strange to me, and I am strange to them. As long as you have one foot in the world and one foot in Christ, you will lose; his seed will be choked out. You can live good moral lives and do a lot of religious works, but if your idea of success is to live the "American dream" and you strive for that, you are missing the truth and you are of the world. For the world seeks after those things. God said in Ezekiel 14:4 he will answer you accord to the idols of your heart, because you do not have a love for the truth "...God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:" (2 Thessalonians 2:11)
Many well meaning people will fall into deception because they followed deceived leaders teaching a false gospel. But we are not like the world; we do not seek after these things. The Lord knows what we have need of. If we seek the Kingdom of God instead of this world's kingdom, he will supply what we have need of in this world. Yes, we occupy while we are here in this world, doing the work the Lord gives us to do. But our desire is not the wealth of the world; it is the Kingdom of God and his righteousness and to be found in him at his coming. The over indulgence of the things of this world and the mind set to compete and to succeed over another is not found in the mind of Christ who came as a servant. "Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness " is one of the most famous phrases in the United States Declaration of Independence. These three aspects are listed among the "inalienable rights" of man, but is NOT listed or found in the mind of Christ.
Even so come quickly Lord Jesus!