7 Facts about the Heavenly Body

Have you ever wondered what our bodies will be like in Heaven? Will I still be a runner? If so, will I be faster and able to run as far as I desire without becoming tired?  Will we need to exercise? Will we need to eat and what food will be available? Here are a number of Scripture passages that shed light on this interesting subject.

7 Interesting Facts about the Heavenly Body

  1. Our heavenly body will be recognizable.  (1 Corinthians 13:12; Matthew 17:1-3)
  2. Our heavenly body will be like Christ’s body.  (1 John 3:2; 1 Corinthians 15:39)
  3. Our heavenly body will permit eating.  (Luke 24:40-43)
  4. Our heavenly body will be unlimited by time, gravity, and space.  (Luke 24:31; John 20:19, 26)
  5. Our heavenly body will be an eternal body.  (2 Corinthians 5:1-5; 1 Corinthians 15:42)
  6. Our heavenly body will be a glorified body.  (Romans 8:18; 1 Corinthians 14:42-43)
  7. Our heavenly body will be a spiritual body.  (1 Corinthians 15:44)

The Bible does not tell us everything about the Christian’s future body, but it does give us quite a bit of information. I’ve heard other questions as well. Will there be animals in Heaven?  Will we know everyone and not need introductions?  Will we be married in Heaven?  Will we be aware of loved ones and friends who did not make it to Heaven?

Through Him (Jesus) we can experience forgiveness and cleansing.

I hope you are prepared for Heaven.  Jesus loves you and wants you to spend eternity with Him.  He came to this earth and died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins, although He Himself never sinned.  Through Him we can experience forgiveness and cleansing.  Confess to Him that you have sinned.  Invite Him to come into your heart and to forgive you of your sins.  Commit to follow Him as the Lord of your life. Find a local Biblical church and become involved. You will grow and God will be pleased!

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5 Keys to Finishing Well

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 2 Timothy 4:17

Many Americans see the Super Bowl as a signal that the 33-race NASCAR season is about to begin. In order to make the final Nascar Chase at the end of the season, consistency throughout is key. But if a driver wants to win it all, he must pull out all the stops and finish the season well. That’s exactly what Tyler Reddick did to win the 2018 Nascar Xfinity Series championship!

One day, all of us who are Christians, will be welcomed home to Heaven. Our race will be complete. I imagine that God will pull out all the stops. No earthly event, regardless how spectacular, will compare to that moment when we first see Jesus! All that will matter at that moment is that we are in His presence and that we have finished well!

5 Keys to Finishing Our Race Well

1.  Be sure we are racing for the correct team. Jesus said that He is the only way to Heaven (John 14:6), so we must be certain that we are on His team. In the end, His team is the only one that will win!

2.  Find our driving style. God made each of us unique. We did not come off an assembly line — we were handcrafted by the Lord. Because of this, we all have a unique design or SHAPE. In order to finish well, we must discover God’s design and purpose for our lives and live accordingly.

3.  Remember who owns the car. We are not our own, we have been bought with a price (1 Cor. 6:19-20). We are simply servants and stewards, so we should follow His race instructions.

4.  Stop for regular pit stops. Even the most finely-tuned $200,000 race car cannot run without regular pit stops. Throughout a race, drivers stop for fresh tires, fuel, and minor adjustments. We must stop regularly for Bible study, prayer, worship, rest, etc. if we want to finish well.

5.  Race to the line. We should never quit. We should never give up. We should keep racing all the way to the finish line. So often, I see people give up on the race before the race is completed. We should pace ourselves in such a way that we can race to the end.

Prayer:  God help us connect with You through Your Son, the Lord Jesus. Help us discover how You put us together and help us run our race according to Your plans. Help us race with integrity , with consistency, and with other teammates in mind. Help us to race to the line and finish well for Your glory! Amen.

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Being Like Jesus Is the GOAL

“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:6-7 (NIV)

As believers, our ultimate goal is to become like Christ. He is the bulls-eye. He is the mark. He is the goal! Here are 5 keys I see in this passage to becoming more like Jesus.

WE BEGIN TO BECOME LIKE CHRIST WHEN WE . . . .

1.  Turn over the steering wheel. God doesn’t want to be co-pilot; He wants to be pilot. The Apostle Paul said, “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord….” (Vs. 6). When I ride with someone else, I find myself wanting to grab the wheel, hit the brake, or stomp the accelerator. Similarly, I sometimes do that in my Christian walk, but Jesus deserves to be Lord in my life as well as yours. I must continually turn the wheel of my life over to Him.

2.  Dig in with Christ. There were a number of false teachers in Colossae, so Paul emphasized the need to be “rooted and built up in Him” (Vs. 7). One way to be rooted is to dig into God’s Word. Common sense tells us that we can’t watch television 5 hours a day, then read the Bible 5 minutes a day, and expect to grow spiritually!

3.  Build our lives in Jesus. Paul said that we are “built up in Him” (Vs. 7). Construction takes time. Some building projects take longer than others. The same is true in our Christlikeness. Discipleship is a lifelong, exciting journey.

Discipleship is a lifelong, exciting journey.

4.  Pump up with teaching. Several years ago two famous Saturday Night Live characters regularly said, “we are here to pump you up!” Paul told the Colossian believers they were “strengthened in the faith as [they] were taught” (Vs. 7). Paul connects the teaching of the Word of God with spiritual strength. We should “pump up” regularly with good Biblical teaching.

5.  Spill thankfulness everywhere you go. Paul concludes verse 7 by reminding us that we should be “overflowing with thankfulness.” I remember a couple of times a waitress accidently filled my glass so full that it overflowed. As mature believers, we should intentionally be so full of thankfulness that we overflow for others to see. I believe that genuine thankfulness is a mark of spiritual maturity.

The Lord Jesus is our model and we often fall short. But, always remember that “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Phil. 1:6, NIV).

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Make A List to SUCCESS

As a young man, Benjamin Franklin resolved to attain the habits of virtue that would lead to success by making a game out of self-improvement.  He wrote thirteen key virtues in a notebook, one to a page, and checked off each instance in the day when he failed in one of them.  He focused intensely on one virtue per week, running through his list four times every year.  His thirteen virtues and goals were as follows:

  • Temperance
  • Silence
  • Order
  • Resolution
  • Frugality
  • Industry
  • Sincerity
  • Justice
  • Moderation
  • Cleanliness
  • Tranquility
  • Chastity
  • Humility

Interestingly, this list is similar to the one the Apostle Paul gives us in Philippians:

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.  Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me–put it into practice.  And the God of peace will be with you.” Phil. 4:8-9

Could a similar list make a difference in our lives today?  I suspect we could each benefit from such a reminder!

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True Success

A few years back my family and I watched most episodes of American Idol. Being a musical family, we enjoyed the time together listening to some excellent young musicians.

Ultimately, the American viewers determine who will be the “American Idol” by their votes. “Success” is defined as winning the show or at least releasing a hit song as a result of being on the show.

In America, there are many symbols of success. In golf, success is winning one of the major tournaments: The Masters, The U.S. Open, The British Open, or The P.G.A. In baseball, success is winning the World Series. In basketball, success is winning the NBA Championship. Our culture sometimes defines a successful person as the one with the corner office, the one with the good-looking spouse, the one with the expensive sports car, or the one with the huge house.

Have you ever thought about what success looks like in the Bible? In the 13th chapter of John, just hours before His crucifixion, Jesus gave the answer. Wanting to make a lasting impression on His disciples, Jesus provided them with a symbol of success–the TOWEL.

Success is symbolized by a TOWEL!

“….so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.”  John 13:5-5

The towel represented service and service represented success. Although He was the leader and was in fact God, Jesus washed the feet of His followers. He performed the act of a household servant. Think about it, if HE served, we should serve. In explaining his actions, he told them:

“I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” John 13:15-17 (NIV) 

Late in life, Albert Einstein removed portraits of Newton and Maxwell from his wall and replaced them with portraits of Ghandi and Schweitzer. For Einstein, it was time to replace the image of success with the image of service. But Jesus went further by demonstrating that SUCCESS IS SERVICE! Reacting to the disciple’s obvious misconceptions about success, Jesus clearly told them:

“….whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave–just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:26-28 (NIV)

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The Dream Church

I love serving and helping our Kentucky Baptist Convention churches. I’ve been privileged to serve Kentucky Baptist churches for 36 years with 28 years in the local church and 8 years on the KBC staff. I have hope for the future of Kentucky Baptist churches. In this post, I’m going to dream about where our KBC churches are going by asking the question “what if”.

What if we could create places where every person began to discover his or her place and purpose in God’s great big world? Imagine! What if our churches were places where people could be “real” and relationships could go well beneath the surface? Imagine!  What if our churches were places where “second chances” really existed? Imagine! What if you found a place that helped you to be the person God created you to be in one of our churches?  Imagine!

What if? Isn’t that a great question? What if? Imagine…I think I will!…I imagine our KBC churches to be places of diversity where people from all walks of life can find acceptance and fulfillment. I imagine our churches to be a people who are not afraid to believe God for the impossible. I imagine our churches to be a people who embrace the future without forgetting the past. I imagine our churches to be churches who value one’s service over one’s standing. I imagine our churches to be places where people encounter Jesus on a weekly basis and experience real life-change as result.

I believe we are doing well in many of these areas. I commend our churches, their pastors, and their leaders. But, as in all areas of life, we can make improvements. Let’s continue to be open to the leadership of the Holy Spirit, continue to turn our focus to Christ, and continue to seek improvement and excellence for God’s ultimate glory!

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2019 KBC Holy Land Trip

On behalf of staff at the Kentucky Baptist Convention, I invite you to join me on our next KBC trip to the Holy Land on October 29-November 7, 2019. All Kentucky Baptists are invited to join us as we walk in the footsteps of Jesus. You will never read the Bible the same again after traveling to Israel. I have tried to explain it by saying “before my trip to Israel, I read the Bible in black and white; now I read it in living color.”

…before my trip to Israel, I read the Bible in black and white; now I read it in living color.

I am organizing the trip again through Jerusalem Tours. This will be the third time I have personally traveled to the Holy Land with this company—they are among the highest rated in the business!

We invite pastors, church staff, church members, Directors of Missions, along with any believers to join us as we walk in the footsteps of Jesus. We have negotiated a great price of $4,189 per person that includes flights from Louisville or Cincinnati, hotels, touring, meals, tips, fuel charges, etc. We encourage churches to consider sending their pastor(s) and his wife on this trip of a lifetime.

If you are interested or if you have any questions, please email me at [email protected] or contact me at 502-489-3434. Reserve your spot before the trip fills up!

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