T HE U PWARD C ALL
Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet;
but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God
IN C HRIST J ESUS .
(Philippians 3.13-14 NASB )
D ECEMBER 15, 2008
A B ETTER C OUNTRY [F ATHERLAND ]
By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to
receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he
lived as an alien in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, dwelling in tents with Isaac and
Jacob, fellow heirs of the same promise; for he was looking for the city which has
foundations, whose architect and builder is God. (Hebrews 11.8-10 NASB)
A letter just found its way into my email inbox that is attributed to one of the late-night talk show hosts. In
this letter, this well-known host wondered why so many people in the US say they are so unhappy. He
went on to recount how blessed Americans are and how many benefits we have compared to other parts
of the world. In the end, he placed the blame for the unhappiness of 67% of Americans on the news
media that defines and makes news based on bad things and not good things. I agree with his
conclusion about the news media in general. America is a great place to live, and we who have been
fortunate enough to live here should truly know how blessed we have been and give thanks to God who
is full of mercy.
I state this to provide balance to what I have written of late. It is a balancing act to write about impending
crises and what it might mean to all of us and not come across as doom and gloom. Let me be clear that
I see the Stone Kingdom crushing mystery Babylon as the greatest thing that could and will happen to
this earth, for it is the beginning of the emancipation of creation and all mankind into the liberty of the
glory of God in His beloved Son. The shaking of things created is a good thing, for it will lead to the
arrival of the kingdom of righteousness and peace that will never be shaken and that will have no end
(Luke 1.32-33). The kingdoms of men rise and fall, even the good ones, but the kingdom of our Lord will
never fall; it will only rise and continue to advance into every frontier in the heavens and on the earth.
This is truly good news!
There is something glorious set before the Lord’s people and, ultimately, all the nations that is much
better than the greatest blessings we have experienced in the US or any other industrialized nation.
Simply, there is a better country coming; it is the Father’s country.
Hebrews 11 is one of the great chapters of Scripture as it recounts the faith of the saints of old who
gained approval through their faith but did not receive what was promised. What was the promise? It is
discovered in what they were looking for― a better country, a heavenly one . They were looking for a
All these died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them from afar off
and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and sojourners on the earth.
For they who say such things shew clearly that they seek their country [ patris ; fatherland] .
And if they had called to mind that from whence they went out, they had had opportunity to
have returned; but now they seek a better, that is, a heavenly; wherefore God is not
ashamed of them, to be called their God; for he has prepared for them a city. (Hebrews
The word country is translated from the Greek word patris , which means fatherland, that is, a native
town. The Modern King James best captures the meaning of what the saints of faith desired. But now
they stretch forth to a better fatherland, that is, a heavenly one (Hebrews 11.16a MKJV]. The word
However, we need to understand that the fatherland these saints were looking for is not in some distant
galaxy far, far away. They were looking for God’s kingdom to come to earth and to manifest God’s
character or nature in the nations of the earth. They were not looking to fly off into heaven on some
good ol’ gospel ship. They were looking for the reign of God to take root in the earth and for the very
character of God to reign in the people and among the nations. We do not know exactly what they
thought it would look like, but I can assure you it was a heavenly expectation on earth, which, frankly,
should be ours as well. You see, I believe they were looking for a fatherland that manifests the character
of God the Father in the affairs of man. In their heart was the prayer Thy kingdom come, Thy will be
done, on earth as it is in heaven . They were looking for the reign of the heavens to come to earth,
and this is exactly what this earth is about to see once mystery Babylon has been crushed like chaff and
arried away by the wind, never to be seen again (see Daniel 2.31-35). This is good news!
Oh, maybe some of us have experienced the good country, but it is nothing like the best country that is
coming. We need to fix our eyes and our hearts on what lies ahead and press on toward it, not looking
ack but clinging to our Lord as He leads us into the best fatherland one could ever desire.
Can you image a country in which the norm of the day for the majority of people is to actually express
love for one another; when people in need are not given handouts by the government but the people in
their community pitch in to help them; when widows, orphans, and the poor are helped and treated with
Can you imagine a country in which righteousness dwells, or, to put it more succinctly, in which
righteousness is the rule of the land? Transactions between citizens are done righteously without greed,
alice, hate, or anything contrary to the character of God.
Can you imagine a country in which the moral law of God is the rule of the day and that love is known as
he foundation of the Ten Commandments and the government does not shy away from stating so?
Can you imagine a country in which judges have the wisdom of God and know how to administer true
stice based on God’s divine law?
Can you imagine a country in which the murder rate drops to almost nil, and there are no more so-called
Can you imagine a country in which people are truly treated with equality, and there is no personal
avoritism based on wealth, social status, color, race, or any other thing that divides people today?
Can you imagine a country where aliens or strangers are welcome to enter the country legally and are
ed and clothed if they are in need?
Can you imagine a country in which peace reigns, one that dismantles its war machine and never goes
o war again but rather puts its resources to use for national infrastructure?
Can you imagine a country in which the government does not tax its citizens at exorbitant, confiscatory
ates, but at a rate that never exceeds 10-12% and is never based on a person’s labor?
C an you imagine a country in which loans are made without interest?
Can you imagine a country in which there is no bribery or lobbying for special interests at the expense of
C an you imagine a country in which there is never any inflation, deflation, recession, or depression?
Well, imagine no longer. The kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ is coming!
The Upward Call #02-08147 by — Stuart H. Pouliot
better means “nobler, stronger, even the best .” Once we realize what was in their heart, we come to
realize that the fatherland they sought is the best country imaginable, for it is the kingdom of our
heavenly Father; the country is the kingdom of the heavens and the city is New Jerusalem , the
heavenly city of glory. The kingdom of the heavens is the Fatherland and the center of life is New
Can you imagine a country in which every injustice is dealt with swiftly, and there are no prisons, for
people are not incarcerated and punished for crimes but instead are required to make restitution for the
amage they have done?