"For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren." (Romans 8:29)

One of the greatest dangers facing Christians is the temptation to become conformed to the things of the world around them, thus destroying their testimony for the Lord. We are specifically commanded, in fact, "Be not conformed to this world" (Romans 12:2). One cannot serve two masters, and the great privilege of the believer is the privilege of becoming conformed, not to a dying world, but to the living Christ.

But first we must be conformed to His death, dying to the world and its standards. The greatest desire of the apostle Paul was to "win Christ. . . . That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death" (Philippians 3:8, 10).

Death is far from the end, however. When Christ returns, He "shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body" (Philippians 3:21). In this verse, the Greek for "fashioned like" is the same as "conformed to." These corruptible, dying bodies we now live in will one day be changed. As Christ rose from the dead, we also shall rise, and our bodies, like His, will be alive forevermore.

Even that wonderful prospect is not the best of it, however. Not only will our bodies be incorruptible like His, but we shall be like Him--like Him in holiness, like Him in love, like Him in wisdom. "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him" (1 John 3:2). In the words of our text, we are actually predestined to be conformed to the very image of the Son of God! HMM

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