Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Jesus' Return Soon: What Will We Be Like? Who Will We See? (1 John 3:1-3)

See how much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him. 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 know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. And all who have this eager expectation will keep themselves pure, pure as he is pure
(1 John 3:1-3, NLT).

I like this. The Apostle John breaks into an outburst of wonder at God’s love in making us His children. “See how much our Father loves us…” John is like saying: “Can you believe how great God’s love is? This love is lavished on us. Extravagance-love. God does not withhold love or attention when we are bad or disobedient. God’s love just keeps coming and coming!” John again and again calls us, the believers – “God’s children.” In other words, we bear the name of the family of God! What better name could we have? In our society, a person can get ahead if he or she has a certain name. But even more important than those names is the name of Jesus. Jesus is our Lord and Brother, God is our Father. We belong to Him. We are not only called God’s children – we really are His’!

From telling us who we are, John goes on to talk about what we will be. I can’t wait for this. “We will be like him.” Exactly what we will be like when Christ returns is not all that clear. But we do know that this life is only a beginning. The best is yet to be. The Apostle Paul, however, gives us some clues about what we will be like. He says that we will be clothed in a “heavenly bodies” that will last forever (read 2 Corinthians 5:1-5). Unlike our earthly bodies that can get sick and waste away, our heavenly bodies will never wear out. This reminds me of Jesus’ body after His resurrection. He could suddenly appear in a locked room without having come through the door (see John 20:19). Even though people could see Him, somehow He was different; and that is how it will be for us too [David Pawson said we going to have a 33-years old body like Jesus. We’ll see]. The promise is that we will not only look like Christ but even more important, we will “see him as he really is.” We will be with Christ forever (read Philippians 1:23; Colossians 3:4). The joy of being with Christ will never end!

In the last verse above, John tells us what we should be. Even as we look forward for Christ’s return and with “eager expectation” for this amazing event we should also aim for purity right now. We must “keep [ourselves] pure, pure as he is pure.” Even though we live this life in preparation for the next, we still need to be responsible to live this life to the fullest. Becoming pure is not an instant act; instead, it is a lifetime process of becoming more pure and clean in a moral and spiritual sense. Thus, we need to focus our energies and values on God so that we can become what God wants us to be. In summary, how much God loves us? “Very much.” Who we are? “His children.” What we will be like? “Like [Christ].” What we will be able to do? “We will see him as he really is.” Therefore, what we should be and do now? We must keep “[ourselves] pure, just as he is pure.” This is beyond awesome… I’m speechless… Amen.

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