I was kind of planning to move on to the next section of this passage, but the more I reflect on this passage, the more I stand in wonder at what we will be.
Our new bodies will be imperishable and incorruptible. No longer shall we know illness, injury, or death.
More, Paul tells us,
And just as we have borne the likeness of the earthly man (Adam), so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven (Jesus).
Put another way, in our new bodies, we will bear the likeness of Jesus. And because he is the image of the invisible God (Colossians 1:15), we will in fact bear the image of God much more perfectly than we do now.
As Adam’s descendants, all of his imperfections have been passed down to us. Jealousy. Deceit. Bitterness. Anger. Hatred. Sin. All these things mar the image of God in us. As a result, our bodies as they are are but a dim reflection of God’s likeness. But when we are transformed, we will reflect God’s image as perfectly as anything can.
As John said,
But we know that when [Jesus] appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. (I John 3:2)
But though we marvel at what we will be, let us not disparage or despise what we are now.
There are also heavenly bodies and there are earthly bodies; but the splendor of the heavenly bodies is one kind, and the splendor of the earthly bodies is another. The sun has one kind of splendor, the moon another and the stars another; and star differs from star in splendor. (40-41)
In other words, in all that God creates, each thing has its own splendor.
Our human bodies, marred by imperfections as they are, deteriorating as they are, still have a type of splendor. Think about all the intricate parts of the eye that have to work together so that we can see. Or all the parts of the ear that are so perfectly fitted together so that we can hear. Think about all the processes that connect my brain to my fingers so that I can type this the moment I think it. These are things we all take for granted, but if you consider them, they’re incredible. As David wrote, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” (Psalm 139:14)
And though we are imperfect, God is not waiting for us to receive our new bodies to transform us.
Rather, Paul tells us,
And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. (II Corinthians 3:18)
So let us not just consider the wonder of what we will be in glory. But let us consider the splendor of the bodies God has given us now. They too reflect God, if only dimly. And as we consider that, let us strive each day to reflect his image even more clearly to those around us.