by Brian Shilhavy

But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. (Philippians 3:20-21)

When we are born again into God’s family and enter the Kingdom of Light, we obtain a new citizenship and a new future. We become citizens of heaven, and aliens (or foreigners) here on earth. We remain here on earth in the natural realm to accomplish God’s purposes in our life. Our pilgrimage here on earth ends either when Jesus returns physically to earth to set up a new physical kingdom, or when we go through physical death and go to heaven to be with Jesus. At that time our “lowly bodies” will be transformed into “glorious bodies.”

Therefore, we no longer belong here on earth. It is not our permanent home. We should never allow our hearts to become too attached to earthly things, since they will all be destroyed in the future anyway. That includes our physical bodies. They are a part of the natural realm, and we will have new spiritual bodies in heaven. So any sickness or disease that we have to endure now is only temporary.

The first Adam, made of earth, came from the earth; the second Adam came from heaven. Those who belong to the earth are like the one who was made of earth; those who are of heaven are like the one who came from heaven. Just as we wear the likeness of the man made of earth, so we will wear the likeness of the Man from heaven. What I mean, friends, is that what is made of flesh and blood cannot share in God’s Kingdom, and what is mortal cannot possess immortality. Listen to this secret truth: we shall not all die, but when the last trumpet sounds, we shall all be changed in an instant, as quickly as the blinking of an eye. For when the trumpet sounds, the dead will be raised, never to die again, and we shall all be changed. For what is mortal must be changed into what is immortal; what will die must be changed into what cannot die. So when this takes place, and the mortal has been changed into the immortal, then the scripture will come true: “Death is destroyed; victory is complete!” “Where, Death, is your victory? Where, Death, is your power to hurt?” Death gets its power to hurt from sin, and sin gets its power from the Law. But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ! So then, my dear friends, stand firm and steady. Keep busy always in your work for the Lord, since you know that nothing you do in the Lord’s service is ever useless. (1 Corinthians 15:47-58)

So our current body of “flesh and blood” is a body weakened by sin, and as such we groan and eagerly wait for the day when we will come to receive our inheritance and receive a new body:

For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. (Romans 8:22-23)

But knowing what is heading our way in the future gives us a whole new perspective on our current life of pain and suffering! Based on the incredible promises of God, we know that we are co-heirs with Christ in inheriting the Kingdom. Therefore, we can patiently endure the pain and struggles of this life knowing they are temporary in nature! In the meantime, we have God’s Spirit living inside these sickly bodies renewing our spirits as we wait for our glorious future!

For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:24-28)

The Holy Spirit gives us power to endure anything this life throws our way, as we wait patiently for our time to come. We now take on a new perspective to all the lousy events and happenings in this life, knowing that it is all part of a grand scheme that God has put into place, and that the end results are going to be wonderful for those of us trusting in him. That new perspective is called “faith”: “”Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1) Those without faith see the events of life as a result of impersonal random “luck” or “bad luck” produced by evolutionary processes, where life is seldom “fair.” Only the strong and powerful survive. The future offers no hope, but only despair, fear, and doubt. This view of the future usually has negative physical consequences in our body. A joyful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit dries up the bones.” (Proverbs 17:22)

But for those of us walking by faith, we see everything as happening according to a master plan where justice is ultimately served at a future time, and where the weak and helpless can become strong and confident in the present, based on our view of the future and God’s ultimate purposes becoming reality at a future time.

For those of us walking in the Kingdom of Light in faith, and following a path of spiritual renewal, we no longer fear sickness or physical death, because our hope is for the future. As we walk in faith, we also begin to see that this Spiritual power that we now have at our disposal can also have a dramatic effect on our physical health in the present. Things that are “impossible” or cannot be explained in the physical realm can actually become common events in the life of a believer who is being transformed in the Spiritual realm! So we stop running to physical solutions as a first course of action for our problems, and instead look to unleash God’s love and power into our daily problems through faith. We are not limited to the small realm of scientific processes for our knowledge which is based simply on the observations of the physical realm and the faulty premise of evolution. We have the power of knowledge and wisdom that comes through a changed life and a relationship with our Creator. And as we learn to listen to God speak to us and allow him to direct the course and events of our life, we find that nothing is impossible!

For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified. What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died–more than that, who was raised–who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:29-39)