Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet;
but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God
(Philippians 3.13-14 NASB )
#02-08152 D ECEMBER 29, 2008
For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God. ” (Hebrews 3.4
During 1992, I was reading a book by a well-known commentator of Scripture, F.B. Meyer. I had been
studying Revelation 21-22, especially the city of God that comes down out of heaven, having the glory
of God. For years, I have been fascinated with New Jerusalem and have often meditated upon it and
sought the Lord to open my eyes to the truth of His glory being revealed in what is called the bride of
the Lamb. Of particular interest to me was the question of how a city could be a bride, and to what
does the glory of God refer.
I was caught by the following quote from F.B. Meyer’s book.
“Around us the most stable structures are being tested and some are crumbling to the
ground. As they fall, they show that their service was transient. But as the scaffolding is
taken down, the true building, the city of God emerges.” (F.B. Meyer)
When I read this, I was reminded of the word given to Haggai, the prophet.
“For thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘Once more in a little while, I am going to shake the
heavens and the earth, the sea also and the dry land. I will shake all the nations; and they
will come with the wealth of all nations, and I will fill this house with glory,' says the
LORD of hosts. 'The silver is Mine and the gold is Mine,’ declares the LORD of hosts.
‘The latter glory of this house will be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts,
‘and in this place I will give peace,’ declares the LORD of hosts.” (Haggai 2.6-9 NASB)
As our present wicked eon (age) is brought to an end, the Lord will shake all that can be shaken, for
we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken (Hebrews 12.28); it is the kingdom of our Lord and of
His Christ (Revelation 11.15).
Some see the latter glory as referring to the glory that will fill a rebuilt temple in Jerusalem during the
coming age of the reign of Christ over this earth. Others see this as being fulfilled in our day during
the Pentecostal Age. However, neither view is correct, for this glory can only come when all things
have been shaken that can be shaken and the kingdom of Christ is manifested when the sons of
glory, the conquerors who will reign with Christ, are manifested in glorified, spiritual, celestial,
immortal bodies in the image of their Head, Christ.
This leads to the question: What house will be filled with the glory of God? If you have read my
previous issues of The Upward Call , you should know that the answer is the temple of God of
believers that is being built into a dwelling of God in spirit (Ephesians 2.19-22). It is the spiritual house
of God that is being built on the foundation of Christ and under the Headship of Christ. It is Christ in
you, the hope of glory (Colossians 1.27). The latter glory is the glory that will fill the spiritual house
of God, the dwelling of God in spirit.
There is another way to describe this temple, and it is the one new man in Christ.
For He Himself is our peace, who made both groups into one and broke down the barrier
of the dividing wall, by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of
commandments contained in ordinances, so that in Himself He might make the two into
one new man, thus establishing peace, and might reconcile them both in one body to
God through the cross, by it having put to death the enmity. (Ephesians 2.14-16 NASB)
There is much to be gleaned from these verses, but at this point I merely want to stress the one new
man , which is also the new creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5.17; Galatians 6.15).
Now, during the latter part of 1992, I was given a vision of the one new man, the new creation.
When I first read the quote from F.B. Meyer, the full impact of what he wrote did not come to me until
some time later. One Sunday during worship, I began to see more of the heart of God in relation to
this quote. As I was meditating, I imagined (not a vision, just “picture thoughts” in my mind) God
working on the scaffold of this huge structure. It was like a typical building project we observe here on
earth. If we visit a building project, whether it is for a house or a large skyscraper or an office building,
what we often see is a mess with debris all over the place; scraps of wood, concrete, wire, etc. It is
usually not a pretty sight. In fact, a building project can be quite messy. We look at it and wonder how
anything of any beauty or utility will emerge from such a mess. Oftentimes, we cannot even imagine
what the final structure will look like.
Now in considering this picture, I pictured a scaffold in my mind and God was building from it. God
was also the architect of this structure, and He was like the painter looking at the scene He wanted to
paint. God had in full view the end product of this building project, and He was diligently working. As
He was working, it was like most building projects; debris was falling onto the ground—building
materials that were of no use to the final product. Parts that were of no value, that would not become
part of the building, were thrown down onto the ground. It looked like a big mess to an observer.
Some parts were given a prominent place in the building; others were given less prominent, but
functional, places. At times, men would try to help in the project but not really be working with God.
My imagination went a little further to picture the structure also going through wind, rain, and even
earthquakes. Through these tumults, other things would fall off the building to the ground, things that
men attempted to put into the building; and so it continued to be a messy project. However, through it
all, God kept on working, building, until one day, He was done. The scaffold was removed, and there
emerged the finished product. What God had in His mind to build was finally completed. Do you know
what I saw? Actually, I thought I would see a literal city, but I didn’t; for at this point, I was given a
vision. In spirit, I saw the silhouette of a Man standing with His arms outstretched. In the same
instant, the spirit of God revealed to me that I saw the one new man in Christ, the new creation .
The Lord was standing as the one new man. I was given a vision of what the city-bride truly is in the
heart of God. It is a people gathered together that have been conformed to the image of the Son of
God, the many sons brought unto glory (Hebrews 2.10). Our lives are hidden with Christ in God;
Christ who is our life; Christ in you, the hope of glory! With this vision, I began to worship and
praise the Lord.
You see, New Jerusalem is not about literal streets of gold, huge walls, gates of pearl, a river of life,
and the trees of life. It is the dwelling of God in spirit, the temple of the Lord, the spiritual house of
God made up of the saints of God built together in Christ. This is the glory of God, for this is what God
desires and what He is building through, in, and for His Son. This is the bride of the Lamb that will
come down out of heaven, having the glory of God. She is heavenly in character; glory in beauty.
Can you think of any greater destiny than to be the very glory of God? This is the latter glory. If you
believe in Jesus, it is Christ in you, the hope of glory!
The Upward Call #02-08152 by — Stuart H. Pouliot