Wednesday, August 26, 2020
LISTEN “For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies.” —1 Corinthians 15:53 Someone once asked Billy Graham what the greatest surprise of his life had been. He responded, “The brevity of it.” As you get older, it seems as though life goes by more quickly. In fact, one study revealed the reason for that, noting that when you’re young, you like adventure. You like to try new things. But when you’re older, you get into routines. For instance, you like to go to the same restaurant, sit in the same spot, and order the same thing. Yes, life goes by quickly, but the good news is that we’ll have new bodies in Heaven. And they’ll be amazing. We all like stories about someone discovering they have superpowers, like Spider-Man, Superman, and Wonder Woman. They have superhuman strength. They can do all kinds of amazing things. Well, we’re going to have superpowers, if you will, in the new body that God will give us. It will still be us. We’ll just be the radically upgraded version of ourselves. Our resurrection bodies will be like the resurrection body of Jesus Christ. The Bible tells us in 1 John 3:2, “Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is” (NLT). And Paul wrote, “For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands” (NLT). Although our bodies wear out like a tent (and tents are not meant to last forever), God will resurrect them, and our souls will live forever.
“And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion.”
The apostle John was privileged to look within the gates of heaven, and in describing what he saw, he begins by saying, “I looked, and, lo, a Lamb!” This teaches us that the chief object of contemplation in the heavenly state is “the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sins of the world.” Nothing else attracted the apostle’s attention so much as the person of that Divine Being, who hath redeemed us by his blood. He is the theme of the songs of all glorified spirits and holy angels. Christian, here is joy for thee; thou hast looked, and thou hast seen the Lamb. Through thy tears thine eyes have seen the Lamb of God taking away thy sins. Rejoice, then. In a little while, when thine eyes shall have been wiped from tears, thou wilt see the same Lamb exalted on his throne. It is the joy of thy heart to hold daily fellowship with Jesus; thou shalt have the same joy to a higher degree in heaven; thou shalt enjoy the constant vision of his presence; thou shalt dwell with him forever. “I looked, and, lo, a Lamb!” Why, that Lamb is heaven itself; for as good Rutherford says, “Heaven and Christ are the same thing;” to be with Christ is to be in heaven, and to be in heaven is to be with Christ. That prisoner of the Lord very sweetly writes in one of his glowing letters—“O my Lord Jesus Christ, if I could be in heaven without thee, it would be a hell; and if I could be in hell, and have thee still, it would be a heaven to me, for thou art all the heaven I want.” It is true, is it not, Christian? Does not thy soul say so?
“Not all the harps above
Can make a heavenly place,
If God his residence remove,
Or but conceal his face.”
All thou needest to make thee blessed, supremely blessed, is “to be with Christ.”