Philippian Citizenship?

When talking about being a citizen of heaven the go to passage is Philippians 3:20. It says literally says our “citizenship is from heaven.” Those who know a little bit more about the historical background of Philippians will know that Philippi was a Roman colony and will make the connection that the kind of citizenship Paul alludes to isn’t about going to heaven but rather representing heaven on earth.  These are associations I have made myself in the past and recently however, things are not so simple.

New Testament scholars Nijay K. Gupta and Michael F. Bird offer important corrections to this issue and other problems in their new commentary on Philippians. To read a very concise overview on the issue of Roman citizenship and the Philippian colony you can read Gupta’s article (Mis)understanding Philippians – The Philippians were Roman Citizens, Right?

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