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  • Writer's pictureGODVERSITY

How Our Bodies Look When Shall Rise in Glory?



Godversity-bodies-raised-afterlife

The Bible contrasts the experience we all now know in our failing bodies with the future reality we will know in our resurrected bodies. Scripture reveals four radical distinctions between the bodies we have now and the ones that we will have as we enter the New Jerusalem.

Someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?” You foolish person!…What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable. It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power. It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body (1 Corinthians 15:35-36, 42-44).

1. They Will Be Ageless

The word “perishable” in verse 42 reminds me of bananas. I like to eat a banana every day. The problem is, I am one of those people who likes them only when they are “just right.” I don’t like them green. But I also don’t like them even the slightest bit overripe. It seems to me bananas are “just right” for only about three or four hours. Why? Because they are perishable—really perishable! And it seems they start perishing the minute after they fully ripen.

I hate to compare our bodies to a perishing banana. But I think most of us can agree the prime of life passes quickly and our fallen bodies get “mushy” before we know it. God’s promise is that the perfectly re-manufactured bodies he will craft for us will be imperishable. How fantastic to imagine possessing a perfected anatomy that is impervious to disease, decay, aging, and any sort of deterioration or physical decline.

Praise God, our aches and pains, aging and diseases will be no more.

2. They Will Be Beautiful

It would make sense that imperishable bodies will be beautiful. The word used in 1 Corinthians 15:43 to describe our future bodies is “glory.” This was the same word Jesus used when he spoke to crowds who were concerned about how they looked due to the quality and beauty of their clothing. He pointed them to the lilies of the field and said, “I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these” (Matthew 6:29). We can be sure that the richest king in the Bible possessed the finest royal robes money could buy. Certainly he took pains to look regal, important, and handsome, presenting himself in a manner that befits monarchs. But Jesus said that the flowers of the field are even more glorious, even better looking.

When the Bible says that our resurrected bodies will be “raised in glory,” we get a sense that we can anticipate a physical appearance that is stunning, resplendent, and glorious.

3. They Will Be Tireless

Next, we are told in 1 Corinthians 15 that though our current bodies are characterized by weakness, our reconstructed bodies will be raised in power. The Bible often reminds us that our bodies are weak, prone to fatigue, and often uncooperative when we go about our lives.

Even when we have strong intentions of doing something good, our bodies are so often obstinate in their weakness. Jesus said as much to the disciples in the garden, who were told to stay awake and pray with Christ in his most distressing hour. Yet, as the Bible states, “their eyes were heavy” and they failed to watch and pray (Matthew 26:43). Their intentions were good, and I am sure they purposed to meet the need. But like us, even when the spirit is willing, the flesh is weak (Mark 14:38).

Thankfully, one day all that will be a thing of the past. God has promised that our resurrected bodies will be characterized by “power.”

4. They Will Want to Do Right

When it comes to doing right, we are not used to our body being an ally. It often acts as an enemy. It is a “fallen body,” we often say, because it has a propensity for doing the wrong thing. Not only does our body lack strength, but so often it is energized by what is sinful.

Temptation so often ignites our flesh and it is drawn to do what we know is unrighteous. For the Christian, this is a constant frustration. Peter said the passions of our flesh wage war against our souls (1 Peter 2:11). We are told that our resurrected bodies will no longer be “natural.” Rather, they will be “spiritual” (1 Corinthians 15:44).

It is important to understand the word “spiritual” the same way we do in Galatians 6, where Paul wrote that “if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness” (verse 1). When we read the word “spiritual,” we think godly, devout, and mature. So when the Bible says that our future bodies will be “spiritual,” we should breathe a sigh of relief. It means there is coming a day when we will no longer battle our fleshly inclinations to do wrong.

Imagine every fight with temptation that is currently fueled by your fallen flesh. It will be gone! That is good news, and something you and I should eagerly anticipate.

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