Tom Wallace, the well known Independent Baptist pastor/evangelist, is now 90 years old. Five years ago, when he was a mere 85, he published Morning Devotions. For the September 25th devotion, he wrote a little piece entitled “This Stuff Has Got To Stop.” Let me share it with you:
Have you noticed stairs are getting steeper? Groceries are heavier. And, everything is farther away. I am dumbfounded to discover how long our street has become!
People are less considerate now. They speak in whispers all the time! I also think they are much younger than I was at the same age.
On the other hand, people my own age are so much older than I am. I ran into an old friend the other day and she has aged so much that she didn’t even recognize me. I glanced at my own reflection in the mirror this morning. Well, REALLY NOW — even mirrors are not made the way they used to be!
Another thing, everyone drives so fast these days! You’re risking life and limb if you happen to pull onto the freeway in front of them. All I can say is, their brakes must wear out awfully fast.
Clothing manufacturers are less civilized these days. Why else would they suddenly start labeling a size 10 or 12 as 18 or 20? Do they think no one notices these things no longer fit around the waist, hips, and thighs?
The people who make bathroom scales are pulling the same prank, but in reverse. Do they think I actually “believe” the number I see on that dial? HA! I would never let myself weigh that much! I’d like to call up someone in authority to report what’s going on — but the telephone company is in on the conspiracy too: they’ve printed the phone books in such small type that no one could ever find a number in there!
We are under attack! Unless something drastic happens, pretty soon everyone will have to suffer these awful indignities.
I’m 54 years old myself now and can already attest to the accuracy of Tom Wallace’s observations. That’s why I, as a Christian, am looking forward to that future moment when this decaying body of mine will be metamorphosized into a glorious new one fit for eternity. This split second in time has popularly come to be called “The Rapture.” 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 says of this event:
For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words. (N.K.J.V.)
These verses tell me that if I have physically died before the Rapture takes place, my body’s metamorphism will coincide with a resurrection. On the other hand, if I am still alive on this earth at that point, this metamorphism won’t require a resurrection. Either way, though, the metamorphism is going to take place.
How can we be so sure? It’s because, as the apostle Paul so eloquently points out in 1 Corinthians 15:50-53, a body of flesh, blood, and corruption simply cannot inherit the kingdom of God. He writes:
Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed — in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. (N.K.J.V.)
The apostle John also wrote about The Rapture. In 1 John 3:2, he described it this way:
Beloved, now we are the children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. (N.K.J.V.)
Think about that, Christian. It hasn’t yet been revealed what we shall be. No, our true unveiling won’t occur until that moment when Jesus is revealed and we become like Him. And what does “like Him” mean? Well, it certainly doesn’t mean that we will become divine like Him. What it must mean, then, is that we will receive glorified bodies on par with the one He received when He arose from the dead. Every Christian should be looking forward to this moment, but until it happens we are left to become all too familiar with the accuracy of Tom Wallace’s all-too-real devotion.