Tech tycoon Bryan Johnson, 45, spends $2million a year to engineer his body into that of an 18-year-old. Through diet, exercise, and various high-tech devices, Johnson and his doctors claim that in two years he has reduced his overall biological age by more than five years and now has the heart of a 37-year-old, the skin of a 28-year-old and the lung capacity and fitness of an 18-year-old. Like most people, Johnson wants to delay aging or rewind the process of dying and is putting his hope in technology to achieve this.
Others are more focused on restoring life after they die. Today, nearly 200 dead patients are frozen in Alcor’s cryogenic chambers at temperatures of −196 °C, including a handful of celebrities, who have paid tens of thousands of dollars for the goal of “possible revival” and ultimately “reintegration into society.” One of the most famous is Paypal founder and tech titan Peter Thiel. Replying to a question about whether humanity can conquer death and whether it should, Thiel responded, “We haven’t even tried. We should either conquer death or at least figure out why it’s impossible.” Like most people, Thiel wants life after death and is putting his hope in technology to achieve this.
What’s the Christian hope of greater life here and hereafter? The Apostle Paul points us to the Holy Spirit not high tech.
Romans 8 tells us a lot about the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. What the law could not and cannot do, the Holy Spirit can and does.
- The Holy Spirit transforms our conscience (1-3)
- The Holy Spirit transforms our minds (4-9)
- The Holy Spirit transforms our bodies (10-11)
- The Holy Spirit transforms our holiness (12-14)
- The Holy Spirit transforms our assurance (14-17)
- The Holy Spirit transforms our suffering (18-25)
- The Holy Spirit transforms our prayers (26-27)
- The Holy Spirit transforms our purpose (28-29)
How do we get greater life here in this dying world?
1. THE SPIRIT GIVES LIFE WHILE WE DIE
The body is dead because of sin
“Although the body is dead because of sin” (10).
“The body is dead” does not mean it is actually completely dead, but that it is sentenced to death, appointed to death, subject to death, in the realm of death, in the process of dying. There’s a deadness in our bodies. Just as we say of the condemned murderer on death row, “He’s a dead man walking.” It doesn’t matter whether we are young or old, healthy or unhealthy, strong or weak, beautiful or ugly, our bodies are dead because of sin. Sin has sown the seeds of death in every human being. God promised death as the result of sin and has fulfilled that promise (Gen. 2:17; 3:1-7).
The Spirit is life because of righteousness
“If Christ is in you…the Spirit is life because of righteousness” (10).
Christ is in us by the Spirit (9). The Holy Spirit brings Christ into our lives. Christ is in us! What an amazing truth. How can he be in us by the Spirit? “Because of righteousness.” Christ cannot and will not live in a place of condemnation. He will only live in a place of righteousness, a life that is right with God because the righteousness of Christ has been credited to us. That legal transaction results in a psychological and spiritual transaction. When Christ’s righteousness is credited to our account, Christ’s Spirit enters our lives with life.
When the Spirit of life lives in us, it does not stop the process of dying but it adds a dimension of life while we are dying. We have a dual experience of ongoing dying and increased living. We are living in two spheres, two realms, two worlds: the sphere of dying and the sphere of living.
CHANGING OUR STORIES WITH HIS STORY
Use your dead body to hate sin. It is natural to love our bodies, and therefore we should hate what is the sworn enemy of our bodies. Whenever we see the effects of death upon us, we are invited to hate sin more.
The Holy Spirit is our ally in fighting sin and its consequences. Part of our experience of dying is the disruption of our bodies: its desires, chemistry, electrics, etc. But the Spirit is our ally in fighting for life. Some of us have bodies that anger too easily, fear too easily, get addicted too easily, get confused too easily, get depressed too easily. SSA and gender dysphoria are part of human death, part of our dying. But the Spirit can give life, can balance out the death, fight the death, overcome the death, and all because of righteousness.
FIND LIFE IN SPIRITUALITY
What about life after death?
2. THE SPIRIT GIVES LIFE AFTER WE DIE
The Spirit raised Jesus’s body from the dead
“…he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead” (10).
The Holy Spirit raised Christ from the dead. Each of the three members of the Trinity were involved in the resurrection: the Father (Acts 2:24; Rom. 6:4), the Son (Jn. 2:19; 10:18), and the Holy Spirit.
The Spirit will raise our bodies from the dead
“If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he…will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you” (10)
If (that’s a big IF we must be sure to get erased) Christ’s Spirit is in us now, he will return to breathe new life into our dead bodies on the last day of World History and the first day of Eternal History. The Spirit’s indwelling presence now is our guarantee of the Spirit resurrecting us later.
Though the body break down into a million pieces of dust, yet the Spirit will reunite, restore, and reconstitute our bodies. Though it be mortal it will become immortal. Though it be weak, it will become strong. The ugly will become handsome (Phil. 3:21; 1 Cor. 15: 42). All our death will be swallowed up by life.
CHANGING OUR STORIES WITH HIS STORY
The present Spirit will be replaced with a greater future Spirit. That same indwelling Spirit you enjoy now, that gives life to you now in the midst of death, will give you life after death when there is no more death. Death will no longer co-exist with life but will be expelled forever and replaced with the Spirit of life in all his fullness. We will live as if we’ve never lived before.
The present body will be replaced with a greater future body. The Holy Spirit will gather your remains and breathe spiritual and physical life into your dust and ashes. Death will be swallowed up with life. No more fatigue, pain, breakages, loss, or disease.
OUR MORTAL BODIES WILL
BE MIRACULOUS BODIES
A NEW CHAPTER
Young: You may feel strong, healthy, and vigorous now. But these verses remind you that you are actually dying while living. Remember you are dying so that you seek greater longer life.
Sick: Use the increasing awareness of death in your body to increase awareness of sin in you.
Tempted: You have the resources of the Spirit of God to fight against moral weakness.
Saints: Think of how much more life the saints have in heaven. They went from dying to living.
Prayer: Spirit of Life, breathe life into my spirit and body so that I can enjoy greater life here and longer life hereafter.
1. In what ways do people try to get more life here and hereafter?
2. What about your body has helped you to hate sin?
3. What bodily weakness has made sin easier? How can you make sin harder?
4. How were all three persons of the God head involved in Christ’s resurrection?
5. Who is more alive? Us on earth or the saints (God’s people) in heaven?
6. How can you become more aware of the Holy Spirit in you?