• Steve Derenge

Would You Like to Gain Citizenship in Heaven?

The following four principles explain the principles and process of gaining citizenship in heaven, or a passport to God's country.

1. God, the King of Heaven, loves you and wants you to become a citizen in His country.

“But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,” --Philippians 3:20 ESV

What prevents us from gaining citizenship in heaven?

2. We have broken the King's laws, which has barred us from citizenship in Heaven. By dishonoring the King, we have been exiled from God's country.

“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” --Romans 3:23 ESV

“Anyone who indulges in sin lives in moral anarchy, for the definition of sin is breaking God’s law. 5 And you know without a doubt that Jesus was revealed to eradicate sins, and there is no sin in him. Anyone who continues to live in union with him will not sin. 6 But the one who continues sinning hasn’t seen him with discernment or known him by intimate experience.

7 Delightfully loved children, don’t let anyone divert you from this truth. The person who keeps doing what is right proves that he is righteous before God, even as the Messiah is righteous. But the one who indulges in a sinful life is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God was revealed was to undo and destroy the works of the devil. 9 Everyone who is truly God’s child will refuse to keep sinning because God’s seed remains within him, and he is unable to continue sinning because he has been fathered by God himself. 10 Here is how God’s children can be clearly distinguished from the children of the Evil One. Anyone who does not demonstrate righteousness and show love to fellow believers is not living with God as his source.”

--1 John 3:4-10 TPT (The Passion Translation)

How do you become a citizen of Heaven? What is the citizenship process?

3. You are required to give up your ties and loyalties to the kingdom of darkness (sin) and submit your allegiance to the kingdom [government] of God.

Later on, after John the Baptizer was arrested, Jesus went back into the region of Galilee and preached the wonderful gospel of God’s kingdom realm. 15 His message was this: “At last the fulfillment of the age has come! It is time for the realm of God’s kingdom to be experienced in its fullness! Turn your lives back to God and put your trust in the hope-filled gospel!”

--Mark 1:14-15 TPT

“For it is through the revelation of the gospel that you are being saved, if you fasten your life firmly to the message I’ve taught you, unless you have believed in vain. 3 For I have shared with you what I have received and what is of utmost importance:

The Messiah died for our sins, fulfilling the prophecies of the Scriptures. 4 He was buried in a tomb and was raised from the dead after three days, as foretold in the Scriptures…”

--1 Corinthians 15:2-4 TPT

“He has rescued us completely from the tyrannical rule of darkness and has translated us into the kingdom realm of his beloved Son. 14 For in the Son all our sins are canceled and we have the release of redemption through his very blood.”

--Colossians 1:13-14 TPT

But it’s not enough just to know these truths on a mere intellectual level.

4. In order to grant us official citizenship in heaven, Jesus must (figuratively speaking) stamp our Heaven passport with his blood. This requires us to follow his instructions for citizenship application to His country.

What are God’s instructions for receiving citizenship in heaven (that is, “salvation”)?

"And what is God’s 'living message'? It is the revelation of faith for salvation, which is the message that we preach. For if you publicly declare with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will experience salvation. 10 The heart that believes in him receives the gift of the righteousness of God—and then the mouth gives thanks to salvation. 11 For the Scriptures encourage us with these words: 'Everyone who believes in him will never be disappointed.'”

--Romans 10:9-11 TPT

What are among the results or benefits of gaining citizenship in heaven?

“Now, if anyone is enfolded into Christ, he has become an entirely new creation. All that is related to the old order has vanished.[m] Behold, everything is fresh and new.”

--2 Corinthians 5:17 TPT

[m] 2 Corinthians 5:17 This would include our old identity, our life of sin, the power of Satan, the religious works of trying to please God, our old relationship with the world, and our old mind-sets. We are not reformed or simply refurbished, we are made completely new by our union with Christ and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

“You kissed my heart with forgiveness, in spite of all I’ve done. You’ve healed me inside and out from every disease. 4 You’ve rescued me from hell and saved my life. You’ve crowned me with love and mercy.”

--Psalm 103:3-4 TPT

The following is just a suggested prayer for completing the application process to become a citizen of heaven. After taking some time to read and study it carefully, if it expresses the desire of your heart, you may say it aloud to God from your heart to become a member of His family and citizen of heaven:

My Father who is in heaven,

    I want to know You personally, to enter Your honored family, and to become a citizen of heaven. I agree with Your word that I have broken your laws. Therefore, I don’t deserve citizenship in heaven because I have clearly crossed the line and deserve to be separated from You forever. But I thank You that even while I deserve to go to hell because of my rebellion against You and rejection of Your love, You sent Jesus to give me another chance at gaining citizenship in heaven through a reconciled and completely mended relationship with You (Romans 5:6-11).

    I believe that Jesus never broke Your laws, never sinned, and loved You perfectly with all his heart, soul, mind, and strength (Matthew 22:37-40; 2 Corinthians 5:21). Jesus gave up his connection to You and heavenly citizenship when he died on the cross, so that my sins (crimes against Your government) could be forgiven and so that I could be reconnected to You. I believe that Jesus rose from the dead, because death didn’t have legal right to keep him separated from Your love. Because Jesus rose from the dead, he proved that his death in my place was enough to grant me the legal right to become Your child and a citizen of heaven (John 1:12).

   So Father, I repent of all my sin. I believe that Jesus’ shed his blood to forgive and to completely remove every wrong I have ever committed against Your heart. I ask Jesus to give me a new heart and to govern my heart as my new God, King, President, and Master. Thank You for pouring out Your love into my heart by the Holy Spirit whom You have given me when I trusted in You to give me this heavenly citizenship (Romans 5:5). Thank You for giving me a new nature where all things have become new in my life, intellect, will, and emotions.

    Thank you that I have been born again with God’s seed in me, so that my life will now produce Your fruits--love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (1 John 3:9; Galatians 5:22-23). Thank You for giving me eternal life, a life that is full and meaningful (John 10:10). As I commit to follow you and to love you with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength, thank You for how You will continue to nurture me, changing me to become more like You (Romans 8:29; 12:1-2; 1 John 2:3-6).

In Jesus’ name,

Amen. (So be it!)


Having entered into a new relationship with God, continue to draw closer to Him in love, intimacy, trust, submission, and obedience. Many people start a lifetime covenant (commitment) with a spouse through marriage, but it requires love, submission, trust, communication, honesty, character, integrity, and intimacy to keep that commitment strong. We can communicate with God and strengthen our relationship with Him through having His word [God's ways and promises in the Bible] live in us and change us continually from the inside out. 

"Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you, but be inwardly transformed by the Holy Spirit through a total reformation of how you think. This will empower you to discern God’s will as you live a beautiful life, satisfying and perfect in his eyes."

--Romans 12:2 TPT

"So you must remain in life-union with me, for I remain in life-union with you. For as a branch severed from the vine will not bear fruit, so your life will be fruitless unless you live your life intimately joined to mine.

5 “I am the sprouting vine and you’re my branches. As you live in union with me as your source, fruitfulness will stream from within you—but when you live separated from me you are powerless. 6 If a person is separated from me, he is discarded; such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire to be burned. 7 But if you live in life-union with me and if my words live powerfully within you—then you can ask whatever you desire and it will be done. 8 When your lives bear abundant fruit, you demonstrate that you are my mature disciples who glorify my Father!

9 “I love each of you with the same love that the Father loves me. You must continually let my love nourish your hearts. 10 If you keep my commands, you will live in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands, for I continually live nourished and empowered by his love. 11 My purpose for telling you these things is so that the joy that I experience will fill your hearts with overflowing gladness!"

--John 15:4-11 TPT

Based on Would You Like to Know God Personally? A version of The Four Spiritual Laws, written by Bill Bright. 


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