who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.Philippians 3:21(NASB)
A significant part of Paul's epistles are either encouraging us to live godly lives, explaining what is expected in our Christian walk, giving examples of how to live to the glory of God or enabling us to grow in grace, through faith in the glorious gospel of Christ - where JESUS is the centre of our life, and our conversation is heavenly.
In this passage, we are exhorted to have no confidence in our fleshly selves. We receive suggestions of things to avoid, counsel on how to mature in the faith and encouragement, to finish the race that is set before us, both joyfully and victoriously.
From the moment of our salvation, all believers embark on a process of sanctification.. as we pursue Christlikeness, with enthusiasm, persistence and patient endurance. Paul exhorts us to press on - looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.. Who will change our fallen, dying body, into a glorious, eternal, immortal, resurrected, body.. which will be fashioned like unto Christ's glorious body.
This is no fairy tale or highfalutin pipe-dream. This is the promise of God, to those who believe - and His word stands fast for ever and ever. He will change our mortal frame, where the life is in the blood.. into a body like that of Jesus Christ- where life comes by means of the Spirit of God - for we are no longer part of the old, fallen, condemned, dying creation, but members of a new, eternal and better creation in Christ - where He, Himself is our life.
Paul was a great example of a man who finished the race that was set before him. Despite pressure and difficulties, he pressed on towards the goal of his calling, but was the first to admit that he was not yet perfected. Nevertheless, he was prepared to keep-on, and lay hold of all he was in Christ, and all that was his, in Christ - spirit, soul and body.
Although we became positionally perfect, the moment we were born-again, sanctification is a life-long process. None of us will be fully sanctified until we meet Jesus - through death or at the rapture. And although we live in a God-hating, Christ-rejecting, satanically controlled, sinful world, which is under God's condemnation, our eternal future is wonderful, for the day is coming when Christ will return to complete the good work that He has started, in each one of our lives - when we were saved.
On that day, the trumpet of God will sound, and the archangel will give a mighty shout. The bodies of believers who have died in Christ, will rise out of their graves first, and we, who are still alive... will be caught up together with then in the clouds. We will all be changed, in the twinkling of an eye, when Christ will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with His own body of glory. And He will do this through the power of the almighty Spirit of God - but it will be done in God's time and in His way, when He finally and fully brings everything under His perfect, righteous authority.
Heavenly Father, thank You for Your many precious promises of God, and that one day.. all who believe on Christ, will have our lowly bodies changed into the image and likeness of our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Thank You that You have promised to transform the bodies of Your blood-bought children, into a body that will be like His resurrected, body of glory. Thank You that Yours is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever - AMEN.