Eternal Savior Lutheran Church

A member of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod

2688 North Park Drive
Lafayette, CO 80026
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February 8 – The Glory Soon To Come

“Thus it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living being'; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual.  The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven.  As was the man of dust, so also are those who are of the dust, and as is the man of heaven, so also are those who are of heaven.  Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven.”  1 Cor. 15:45-49

Devotional Thought For The Day

I have to say that I am still trying to grasp all that I can in regard to the mysteries of the life to come.  Paul’s account in 1 Cor. 15 about the differences between our life as “people of dust” in this world and our life as “those who are of heaven” following the resurrection has to be understood in a manner consistent with what the rest of Scripture says about “resurrection.”  Job emphasizes that it is our own real human flesh that is raised on the Last Day – “For I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last He will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God, Whom I shall see for myself, and my eyes shall behold, and not another.”  [Job 19:25-27] Likewise, Jesus emphasizes to His disciples that His resurrected body is the same body He had while with them prior to the crucifixion – showing them His wounds, bidding them to touch Him, and even eating fish with them. [John 20:27; Luke 24:38-43]  This, even though there were differences in His appearance that apparently made it difficult for them to recognize Him. [Luke 24:13-32; John 21:4ff]

That this mortal body that we now inhabit will be changed dramatically is emphasized by the apostle Paul in these verses – and by other apostles elsewhere in Holy Scripture.  He even goes so far as to assert that “flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God” [v. 50], that is, the mortal and perishable flesh and blood of people who are merely “of dust,” our flesh and blood as he describes it being currently constituted – we cannot inherit the kingdom of God in our current state.  Obviously, the resurrected flesh and blood of Christ belongs to the kingdom of God, and so shall our own resurrected and glorified flesh and blood when “we bear the image of the man from heaven.”  This is the promise of God’s Word in regard to the resurrection of all who believe in Christ Jesus – for “he that believes the Son has eternal life” [John 3:36], and “when He appears we shall be like Him, for we will see Him as He is.” [1 John 3:2]  So we must hold all of these things together, in close proximity in our thinking, so that we continue to affirm the blessedness of God’s physical creation, including our bodies now [which are “fearfully and wonderfully made” – Ps. 139:14], and yet also eagerly anticipate the much greater blessedness that our bodies will experience in the resurrection.

All of this is the penultimate blessedness that precedes our entry into the eternal joyous, celebratory, reverent worship of God in the kingdom of heaven.  What was lost in the Garden by Adam’s fall into sin, with the imposition of death, is restored and enhanced by Christ’s suffering, death, and resurrection – the redemption in His blood which is received by faith, and faith alone.  This is the plan of God, the destiny to which He has appointed us, we who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and rejoice to live in close fellowship with God Who is love, in a life of repentance and faith.  There is much to be enjoyed in this wonderful world God created for us, much to give Him thanks and praise for, but it is nothing compared to the glory which is yet to be revealed in us. [Rom. 8:18]  All of this is “the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” [Eph. 2:8,9]  It is His gift to us in Christ Jesus, and part of the faith, hope, and joy that He calls us to in this life – and He is deserving of our greatest thanksgiving and praise.  We enjoy the first-fruits of this glorious transformation and the glorious rejoicing to come at the Lamb’s marriage feast in the life of the church now – where we behold His glory and receive His body and blood for the forgiveness of sins.  I’m still trying to grasp all that I can about this – but what can be clearly grasped and understood is overwhelmingly glorious and joyful!  Thanks and praise be to God!

Prayer For The Day

Dear Lord Jesus Christ, through Your incarnation, Your suffering, death, and resurrection, You lead the way for us to the splendors of God’s great love for us – clearly revealing the blessedness that God has prepared for us in Your eternal heavenly kingdom.  Strengthen us with strong and eager faith for our sojourn through the troubles and tribulations of life in this world, that we be fully prepared to inherit the glory soon to come.  Thank You, Lord Jesus – eternal thanks and praise be to You.  Amen.