Reading: “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
The doctrine of the resurrection is a terror to the ungodly, for the very body, which they now cherish so much, and for which they slave so much to satisfy and beautify it, will eternally bear unbearable pain in hell. Those eyes which you now misuse so greatly to stir up filthy lust, whereby you now display the wrath, pride, and vanity of the heart, will behold with terror the Lord Jesus, the righteous judge, and will never see light any more. Those ears which are now ready to receive all vanities, immoral language, and backbiting, will hear with terror the sentence of the judge, “Depart from Me, ye cursed,” and to all eternity your ears will be filled with the howling of those who are damned together with you, along with the dreadful manifestation of God’s wrath. That mouth and tongue, which you now misuse to curse, lie, backbite, will then howl and scream, and in grief you will chew on that tongue.
Believers, be it known, however, that your bodies, in which you must now suffer so much, will one day be delivered from all sorrows. The Lord will then wipe all tears from your eyes and will change this vile body so that it may be conformed to the glorious body of Christ. Then your body will shine forth as the stars, and as the brightness of the firmament. Your eyes will rejoice in beholding your beloved Jesus and all those glorious things which are to be seen in heaven. Your ears will delight themselves in hearing the heavenly hallelujahs, and you will join them in singing the heavenly doxologies. All that God has prepared to the delight of your body, the Lord will cause you to enjoy forever. What a wondrous exchange that will be! Therefore, in all patience suffer all that is distasteful to the body, and counteract your suffering by the expectation of glory.
“Our sorrows are all, like ourselves, mortal. There are no immortal sorrows for immortal souls. They come, but blessed be God, they also go. Like birds of the air, they fly over our heads. But they cannot make their abode in our souls. We suffer today, but we shall rejoice tomorrow.”—C. H. Spurgeon
Adapted from Wilhelmus à Brakel (1635–1711), Works 4:336