This is the conclusion of the sermon started several posts earlier.
Turning back to the Creed we learn that our ultimate hope as Christians is not “going to heaven when I die” but the resurrection of the body. We are physical beings, God made us that way because it is His intention that we be physical. Had He wanted us to be spirits or angels, He would have made us so. And in each of us is a sort of longing for the Garden of Eden. We don’t always understand what is missing for us, but it is that blessed place God prepared for us. Eden is our home and it is the intention of God to take us back to where we belong.
So our souls and our bodies will reunite and we will have imperishable bodies. We will live in the presence of God for all eternity, embodied. It is His presence with us that will make the new creation to be heaven. We can see that in the creation account in Genesis where we find that God went to Adam and Eve in the Garden. He didn’t bring them to Himself spiritually, but He came among them. We will have bodies which are like the Body which our Lord Jesus assumed. In his first epistle John says, “… what we will be has not yet appeared, but we know when He appears, we will be like Him …”
So listening to John we know both how we will be and when these things will occur. Heaven will be when Jesus returns on the last day. On that day the entire world we know will cease to exist, replaced by a new, perfect, eternal world where Christ and His people will be together. It will be a world without sin, a world without disease, a world without sadness, a world without despair. And the lowly condition of the bodies we have will be exchanged for the glorified condition of Christ’s own body.
The writer of Hebrews says that here in this world we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. We long for the glory that will be ours as it was always meant to be, the people of God in full communion with God, pure, holy and eternal.
So the Creed has taken us from the beginning to the new beginning. It is precious to the Church and I can only say how sorry I am for our brothers and sisters who do not recite it and pray it over and again. We thank our ancestors in the faith for preserving it for our comfort and our dedication.
For earlier portions of this sermon go to these posts: