In Scripture we read about the Divine Creator Who created man in His image. We have no idea at all how God looks like. We do know He is not a man of flesh and blood, but is an eternal Spirit. We can imagine that He as Spirit may have a glorious, heavenly, spiritual body but we cannot liken man’s to God’s body. “God is a Spirit.” (John 4:24).
From several chapters in the Bible we do know that man is not only made “in God’s image” which would mean that he was created with moral qualities like those of God, namely, love and justice. From many chapters in the New Testament we also learn that we do have to work at our character, even in such a way that we become like a new personality. (Compare Colossians 3:8-11.)
We are told that the human being also has powers and wisdom above those of animals, so that he can appreciate the things that God enjoys and appreciates, such as beauty and the arts, speaking, reasoning, and similar processes of the mind and heart of which the animals are not capable. Moreover, man is capable of spirituality, of knowing and having communication with God.
1 Corinthians 2:11-16 The Scriptures 1998+ (11) For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man that is in him? So also, the thoughts of Elohim no one has known, except the Spirit of Elohim. (12) And we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit that is from Elohim, in order to know what Elohim has favourably given us, (13) which we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Set-apart Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual matters with spiritual matters. (14) But the natural man does not receive the matters of the Spirit of Elohim, for they are foolishness to him, and he is unable to know them, because they are spiritually discerned. (15) But he who is spiritual discerns indeed all matters, but he himself is discerned by no one. (16) For “Who has known the mind of יהוה? Who shall instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Messiah.
Hebrews 12:9 The Scriptures 1998+ (9) Moreover, we indeed had fathers of our flesh disciplining us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live?
For such reasons man was qualified to be God’s representative and to have in subjection the forms of creature life in the skies, on the earth, and in the sea.
Being of bones, flesh and blood, fallible man has to try to become one with Christ and one with God, by working at his spiritual body, a body made in the glorious nature of the Spirit of God, and therefore incorruptible in life.
…there is a spiritual body… Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. (1 Cor. 15:44-46).
That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. (John 3:6).
But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. (Romans 8:11).
And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. (1 Cor. 15:49).
For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. (1 Cor. 15:53).
Grace to you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. (Phil. 3:21).
We ourself are mortal and our spiritual body is like a mortal body in shape, but not in nature.
…we shall all be changed… this mortal must put on immortality. (1 Cor. 15:51-53).
…this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. (Acts 1:11).
Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. (Luke 24:39).
…we shall be like him (1 John 3:2).
The difference of nature between our spiritual body and our mortal body is that mortal body grows old, decays and dies; whereas a spiritual body lasts forever. A mortal body is weak; a spiritual body is strong. A mortal body is corruptible, lustreless, and dishonourable, whereas a spiritual body is incorruptible, bright, and glorious. Even the clothes worn by a spiritual body can become as white as snow and as shining as the sun.
Neither can they die any more (Luke 20:36).
It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: (1 Cor. 15:42-43).
They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters (Rev. 7:16-17).
have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? (1 Cor. 9:1) …I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me (Acts 26:13).
… his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. (Matt. 17:2).
…they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31).
…they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever. (Daniel 12:3).
The lovers of God, believing in Christ Jesus the Messiah, believe that when Jesus returns and calls the living and the dead to be judged, they shall have their mortal bodies changed into spiritual bodies.
All will experience this glorious change who believe, love, and obey the truth steadfastly to the end. They will rise from the dead at the coming of Christ, and appear before him to be judged, along with all others who are at that time brought to judgment. When he has separated them from the unfaithful, the unfaithful will be dismissed from his presence to shame, corruption, and death, while they, the accepted, will be changed in a moment: all in one company, in the likeness of the body of their glorious judge.
…We [the accepted] shall all be changed, (1 Cor. 15:51).
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. (2 Cor. 5:10).
For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. (Gal. 6:8).
…he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you… if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. (Romans 8:11-17).
And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. (Dan. 12:2).
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? … And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (Matt. 7:22-23).
And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. (Matt. 25:46).
For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; (1 Thess. 1:9).
Dutch version / Nederlandse versie: Betreffende het spirituele lichaam
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