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The Vile Body Changed Into the Glorious Body.

The Vile Body Changed Into the Glorious Body.

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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 iii. 21.

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 iii. 21.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on May 18, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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The Vile Body changed into the Glorious Body.UPPER CAADA TRACT SOCIETYWho shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His gloriousbody, according to the working whereby He is able even to subdue all things untoHimself. PHILIPPIAS iii. 21.IT is remarkable that the highest festival of the Church, and thegreatest event of all history, concerns emphatically the body. Theeverlasting life of the spirit is a doctrine of heathenism. Unrevealedreligion, and almost universal instinct, teaches that. But the futureVOL. vn.  193EASTER DAYlife of the body is a tenet which belongs to Christianity. I do notsuppose that we can arrive at any certain proof of the immortality of the body, but by revelation. We can find analogies which leadup to it. ature is full of it. But analogies are not demonstrations.The proof is the Bible. Establish inspiration, and you establish theimmortality of the body. In this sense Christ could say, I am theResurrection. So exclusively did He both make it, and teach, andprove it.It is well that we should learn, on this day, to give its right honourto the body. There is a way in which the world falsely elevates it ;and there is also a way in which Christians as falsely depress it.One great object of the Gospel is to make us think less of the bodyof the present, and to make us think more of the body of the future.The Incarnation, the Cross, the Resurrection, all belong to the body.Jesus loves the body well. He speaks about it. He did His miracleson it. He fed it. He established His sympathies with it. He redeemed it. He raised it. He spiritualised it. He glorified it.And it is not too much to say, that there is no good thing you cansay of the soul, which you cannot also predicate of the body.This is that which belongs especially to Easter. Let us pursuethe thought a little further.It is a true and speaking picture of the body, as it is now, whichunderlies that expression, our vile body.
You are perhaps aware, that the first and proper meaning of theword vile is not so much what is bad, but what is worthless. Wemay add it to the long list of words which have obtained, throughfalse use, an exaggerated and worse sense than they originally carried.It is, literally, poor, or cheap, or nothing worth. The exact termwhich S. Paul uses in this passage is a very touching one, * Whoshall change the body of our humiliation.The body of our humiliation! And how painfully accuratethat description of our present body is, who has not found ?ecessary as it is to us, and proud as we may be about it, nevertheless it is a body of humiliation. It matters not about age or station,high-born or low-born, rich or poor, it is to us all a body of humiliation every day. otwithstanding all the time, and all the money,and all the care we may spend about it, every day, to please it, todress it, to keep it ! And there are all the humiliating functionswhich it has to perform ; and the many things which almost reduceit to the level of the lowest animal.And how does it repay us ? When we are well, it tempts us to sin :and when we are ill, it tempts us to despair. One time it inducesselfishness, and drunkenness, and gluttony, and evil passions ; andanother, low spirits, and irritableness, and nervous fears. It is far194OUTLIES O VARIOUS PASSAGESmore a clog to drag us to the ground than ever it is a wing to helpus to soar.Who has not felt what a humbling thing it is to be sick and dependent upon others ? And who has not found how it is no lesshumbling, when raised to health again, to forget all the goodresolutions which we made in our sickness ? And who has not oftenthought : * Oh, what might not my mind become, but for itscumberings ! How spiritual I should be, if I had no sickness, andno weariness, and no weakness worse than death !You are pretty, and it makes you proud ; or, you are plain, and itmakes you mortified ! There is the weakness of childhood, and thedecrepitude of age! the grey hairs, the waning beauty, the dimeyesight, the weakened memory !
And it is a humbling thing to die, if you look only at the physicalpart of death ; it is a humbling thing to die ! And then, after death,earth to earth ; ashes to ashes ; dust to dust. As there havebeen during life, so after life, there are things so base and degrading,that we cannot speak of them and we dare not look at them. Tt isa true word S. Paul chose, * the body of our humiliation. 1 And thepathos was no poetry, when he exclaimed, under the sense of thedepression, O wretched man that I am ! who shall deliver me fromthe body of this death ?If you look at it religiously, if you examine what is the secret of almost all the difficulty, and the source of all spiritual conflict in everybeliever, it is that at our conversion our souls are changed, but ourbodies are not changed. We carry a new being within an old one.The body is not altered till the Resurrection ; the spirit has alreadyundergone a very great transformation. Hence the battle and themisery ; the spiritualised part clogged and cumbered by the carnal,waits and longs for the complete renovation of the whole being !* We ourselves, which have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, theredemption of our body. That is the resurrection-change. Whenthe new spirit shall clothe itself in the new body at the Second Advent.For so again S. Paul speaks : For we that are in this tabernacle, i.e.in this body, do groan, being burdened : not for that we would beunclothed ; he did not find pleasure in the thought that, ultimately,he would be a spirit without mortal covering not for that we wouldbe unclothed, but clothed upon with a new spiritual body, thatmortality might be swallowed up of life.But how, the question is, how does it pass from the body of humiliation to the body of glory ? Let us look at the history of ourbody, as far as we can read the outline of it, from what has beenrevealed. When we are told that at the beginning man was made195EASTER DAYin the likeness of God, not his spirit only but his whole being,what can we infer but that his Body was then formed after the modelof that Manhood which God had, from all eternity, planned topursue in the Person of Immanuel ? so by anticipation man s bodycopied the body of the future Christ.

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