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The Daily Word of Righteousness
Our Christian Pilgrimage, #15
Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself. (Philippians 3:21)
John 3:16 ("should not perish") is referring to our dust, our material body. It is impossible for the spiritual nature of man to perish since it is spiritual and not material. That which was lost in Eden was our "dust," our mortal body, our means of expressing our spirit and soul.
It is not God's intention to do away with our mortal body and replace it with another body. Rather, it is God's purpose to bring us to the point where we can reclaim our mortal body from the chains of spiritual and physical death.
As the Lord said, "The flesh profits nothing." The flesh of man practices only that which the indwelling spiritual nature permits or commands. The body apart from the spirit is dead.
Adam and Eve possessed perfect physical bodies but their spiritual natures were quite imperfect, not being rooted in Christ. Therefore, they led their "dust" into death.
Had God permitted them to eat of the tree of life, receiving eternal life into their flesh, it would have been impossible for God to redeem them.
Instead, God permitted them to die.
Then, through Christ, God began the redemption of people by placing a "heaven," as it were, between their bodies and their spiritual natures. This reminds us of the first chapter of the Book of Genesis where the Lord divided the waters by means of a heaven.
When we receive the Lord Jesus as our Savior, and are born again, God raises our new spiritual nature to His right hand in Christ. Our eternal life is hidden with Christ in God.
Our dead body remains on the earth while our new spiritual nature is located in the highest Heaven. A heaven divides our spirit from our body.
Now the Lord begins the process of perfecting our spiritual nature. He uses prayer, the Scriptures, the ministries and gifts of the Holy Spirit, tribulation, the fellowship of fervent saints, persecution, and every other device and circumstance for driving the world, sin, and self-centeredness from our spiritual personality. Meanwhile our mortal body remains in a state of death because of the sin that dwells in it.
If we are successful, through Christ, in driving out of us all that is satanic, all the darkness of Hell and self-centeredness, then we are ready to drive the last "Philistine," the last enemy, out of our "land." We are ready to be trusted with a body. Down from Heaven we will descend with the Lord Jesus and into our flesh and bones.
Because we have been made life-giving spirits, our material remains will burst into the immortal form dictated by that which we have become in spiritual personality. For Paradise is the expression of the spiritual personalities that inhabit it.
Now our spiritual personality is clothed with flesh and bones, following the example set for us by the Lord Jesus. If we are members of the royal priesthood there is a glorified body formed from the substance of eternal life that the Lord Jesus will place over our flesh and bones.
To be continued.