The Christian’s Future: Glorification (Philippians 3:17-21)
The Apostle Paul was straining and pressing on to what was ahead—the upward call of God—the prize of glorification—the prize of graduating to the heavenly realm and attaining the upward call of God. He taught the church in Philippi to be imitating his own spiritual walk—to follow his example.
We are living on the earth temporarily, and will one day be transferred to heavenly realms. Jesus will return for us in His glory and glorify our bodies to be like His. What an honor for God to choose us—the lowly and despised of this world—to be part of his family and experience the transformation that comes only through Him.
The realization and understanding of spiritual transformation is sometimes a challenge for our minds to grasp. It’s otherworld and out of our natural range. We read the explanation in the scriptures and seem to understand it on the surface. But to really embrace the magnitude of being transformed and translated to heaven is not a casual thing. It’s a mind-blowing concept. Our physical body will become a glorious body. God is constantly at work in us, sanctifying, cleansing and preparing us for the day of our glorification, reminding us that our true citizenship is in heaven, not on this earth.
“We will be like Him”—a seemingly simple phrase, yet it is so easy to miss its significance and power.
How do we prepare for glorification? What an odd question! We know how to prepare for a bar exam, or train for competition, or land on the moon. Paul gives us the answer in Ph. 3:17—“imitate me and keep your eyes on those who walk according the example you have in us.” That’s it in a nutshell. Follow the example of strong Christian leaders and avoid becoming entangled in the world’s ways. Rom. 12:1-2 tells us to present our bodies as a living sacrifice and not to be conformed to this world. 2 Cor. 3:18 says that we are all being transformed into the image of Christ from one degree of glory to another.
Study and follow the instructions that God has given us in His word. Let us remind ourselves that this earth is not our permanent home. Let’s embrace God and His Word more and more, doing all that is within us to be ready for that day!
Week 8 Questions:
Paul says that our minds should be focused on our citizenship in heaven. Check your thoughts. What tends to be your focus?
Who in your life is like a “Paul” to you—someone whose example you can follow? Someone who speaks into your life
What difference is made in our life by reading and/or studying the Bible on a regular basis?