Christ's Glory Awaits Us
The consumer debt of Americans is 2.4 trillion dollars. That’s an average of $7,800 for every individual.1 Not all Americans are debtors, but all Christians are. We’ve an obligation to the Spirit, not to our fleshly interests and selfish concerns.
There are only two realms—the kingdom of self-interest and the kingdom of the Spirit. Neither can win without our cooperation. We must continue to put to death the body’s misdeeds (verse 13). Among them are “sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry” (Colossians 3:5, NIV). Those who live for self-interest will experience eternal separation from God whether they claim to be Christians or not.
When an airplane is flying, the law of aerodynamics is stronger than the law of gravity. We overcome the law of gravity by remaining in the plane. We overcome the law of sin and death by remaining in the Spirit and being sensitive to His promptings. Only those whom the Spirit leads, rules, and governs are the children of God.
Through the Holy Spirit’s witness, we receive a secret inner witness to the reality of our salvation. The female egg reaches its full potential only after the sperm fertilizes it. Similarly, the human spirit reaches its full potential only after the Holy Spirit enters our lives. We become spiritually alive. We can then achieve that for which we were created. We’re God’s heirs and co-heirs with Christ. We’ll share in Christ’s glory. But that glory has a cost. Sharing Jesus’ sufferings includes serving others, giving up our rights, and refusing to conform to the world, no matter the cost. The reward is eventually participating in His glory.
When Christ returns, God will transform the material universe to fulfill His purposes. Until then, creation groans. We do too because of the weight of our present imperfections. We long for the glory to be revealed. Our adoption has a future aspect—God will publicly acknowledge we’re His children. He’ll fully conform us to the image of His Son. He’ll clothe us with an immortal, incorruptible body in the likeness of the body of Christ’s glory. That body will be perfectly suited to our new situation.
Until that happens, we have hope that brims with confidence—a by-product of our salvation. But for now, we must patiently endure the cross and tribulations. They’re a prelude to glory. The Holy Spirit encourages us in the midst of our suffering and the burden of our weaknesses. He prays for us consistent with our real needs in harmony with God’s will. We pray in the background. His prayers are in the foreground, overshadowing our prayers. For now, that’s enough. Around the bend, Christ’s glory awaits us.
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