I do not know about you, but there are things in my life that I long to get rid of. There are behaviors, bouts of crankiness, loneliness, selfishness, melancholy that I long to get rid of. Furthermore, now that I am older, I am beginning to realize why so many people have given me a piece of advice that I never could follow, “Don’t get old.” The aches, pains, and lack of endurance of old age sneaks up on you.
There will be a day when everyone who trusts in Jesus will see him face to face. The “hope of the glory of God” that the Bible talks about in Romans 5:2 refers not just to seeing the glory of Jesus with our own eyes – as stupendous as that will be – but also the Christian’s glorification.
The Christian, in this life, experiences the first fruits of their salvation. In 2 Corinthians 3:16-18, we are told, “But when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed.” The veil here represents one’s hardened heart that serves as a barrier between the unrepentant and God. However, since Jesus removed that veil for all who trust in him, the Bible goes on to say, “And we all, with unveiled faces, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another.” The Christian now beholds Christ dimly. But, even now, as the Christian looks at Jesus dimly, Christ is rubbing off on him. His relationship with Jesus has already begun to change him. One day, however, this restoration will be complete, and he will be fully glorified.
All of the sin and struggles with sin will be gone. The Christian will receive a better body than he ever had on earth, a body that will never wear out or become ill. To put it in another way, God did not just buy a beat-up old junker that was destined for the crusher. He promised to provide everything needed to restore the Christian to mint condition, just as the Maker designed.
This sure hope has a profound effect. It causes the Christian to rejoice (Romans 5:2). The Greek verb translated “rejoice” here means more than happiness. It means a firm confidence in God. A rejoicing Christian does not boast in his own abilities but in what he knows God is already doing in and through him, on both the sunny days and the dreary days.