New Life for Mortal Bodies

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.

Romans 8:11

Romans 8:11 is, first of all, a word of hope. The same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead “will give life to [our] mortal bodies.” This refers to the resurrection that is to come, when God completes the work of renewing the cosmos. Even as Jesus was raised to new life by the Spirit, so the Spirit will raise us. This is our confident hope.

Now, of course, our bodies are mortal. They malfunction. They become sick. They get weak. Ultimately, they die. But the hope of the resurrection motivates us to live now with boldness. Our mortality, however real it might be today, does not define us. God defines us through the hope of the resurrection.

This does not mean, however, that our mortal life is empty. We aren’t merely sitting around as we wait for the resurrection yet to come. Rather, the Spirit who will raise us in the future lives in us today. Thus we can begin to experience the life of the future now. Sometimes this happens when the Spirit heals our mortal bodies. Sometimes it happens when we experience God’s forgiveness and then forgive others. Sometimes it happens when we minister through the indwelling power of the Spirit. Indeed, our future is bright, but our present can be too—as we live for God’s glory in the reality of his Spirit.

QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: What reminds you that your body is mortal? Does the hope of the resurrection make any difference to you? How?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, indeed, there is much good news in this verse. For one thing, there will come a time when your Spirit will give life to my mortal body, raising me from the dead even as Christ was raised. This mortal life isn’t everything for me. Indeed, it’s just the beginning. All thanks and praise be to you!

Yet, even now, your life-giving Spirit dwells within me. Though I will not experience the fullness of new life until the new day dawns, I can begin right now to sample that new life. So may I live with one foot in the new creation today. May I live with faith, with hope, with love, and with joy. Amen.