But our citizenship is in heaven – and we also await a savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform these humble bodies of ours into the likeness of his glorious body by means of that power by which he is able to subject all things to himself.
(Philippians 3:20-21 ESV)
Someday Jesus will return and release us from the pain and suffering that is on this earth [Romans 8:23, 25; Hebrews 9:28 et. al]. In the meantime, God’s children – those who believe in Jesus for the forgiveness of their sins [John 1:12] – wait for Him to return. The Greek word translated “await” implies a persistent, yet patient, longing.
One of the things Jesus will do at the end of time is to give everyone bodies that are like the “glorious” one He is living in right now. When Jesus rose from the grave He did so in bodily form [Luke 24:39]. It is in this body that He ascended into heaven 40 days after His resurrection [Luke 24:50-53; Acts 1:9]. God tells us that Jesus’ resurrection was the first of many like it [1 Corinthians 15:20]. Every believer will one day live in heaven in a new body just like Jesus does.
These new bodies will not be like our current “humble” bodies. They will not die. They will not get sick. They will not even be limited by the laws of nature [John 20:19].
Most notably, our bodies will not be subjected to sin. Right now our flesh is enslaved to sin. Although born-again believers are free from the penalty of their sin right now, someday we will also be free from the power and presence of sin. This will be a great relief.
The Greek word translated “transform” is very interesting. The word is μετασχηεματιζο (pronounced: met-askh-ay-mat-id’-zo). It is from this word that we get our English word “schematic”. A schematic identifies how something is designed. God has a design for each of us. While we know our new bodies will be tangible (Jesus’ was) they require a different design – one that is not prone to sin or susceptible to disease. Pretty cool.
Only God has the power to do this. In yesterday’s study we saw Paul state that the Caesars were not the gods they thought they were. Today we learn that God will do something that the Caesars – or our government leaders today – couldn’t even dream of doing.
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