THE UPWARD CALL
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
IN CHRIST JESUS.
(Philippians 3:13-14 NASB)
March 23, 2010
I find it fascinating to listen to President Obama, but not for the reason you might think. Many seem to
be captivated by his eloquence and brilliance. As I have stated elsewhere, judging one solely on these
merits could be deceiving, for eloquence and brilliance do not qualify one’s character. Eloquence is not
reserved for the righteous any more than it is for the unrighteous.
What I find of more interest are some of the words that the president uses repeatedly as he tries to push
his agenda. But the president isn’t alone, for many of the politicians and the media use the same words
repeatedly as well. In issue #04-1024, March 8, 2010, Hearts Like Channels of Water , I wrote: “Lately,
I have been intrigued by some of the words frequently used by the political leaders of our day, such as
openness , honesty , transparency , bipartisanship , agnostic , and reconciliation , to name a few.” In
other issues, I have taken up the word smart as well.
A very specific word has been used by Mr. Obama while he was campaigning for the office and after he
won the job. It is the word transform . On the eve of the national election, on October 31, 2008, in one
of his campaign speeches, he declared: “We are five days away from fundamentally transforming
the United States of America.” He has given other speeches about redistributive change or
transformation. Opinions on exactly what this fundamental transformation will look like at the end of
the day depend pretty much on one’s worldview and political persuasion.
Let me be clear that I am not questioning President Obama’s motive or intent in his quest for the
transformation of America. Personally, I believe he has been blinded into pursuing a particular course
that he strongly believes in but that could be disastrous for our country; however, this is the Lord’s
doing, for the king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the Lord.
As we come closer to the end of our present wicked eon, we must realize that the great unholy city called
Mystery Babylon is a counterfeit to the true holy city of God that is being built, New Jerusalem. Further,
Babylon is a counterfeit kingdom to the kingdom of God; it is a kingdom of men that has become a
dwelling place of demons and a prison of every unclean spirit (Revelation 18:2). We must not forget that
a counterfeit is only as good as how close it comes to looking and feeling like the real thing.
The word counterfeit means “made in imitation of something genuine with intention to deceive or
defraud; forged.” A good counterfeit is capable of deceiving all but the most discerning.
Consequently, we should expect and be alert to this errant, counterfeit kingdom taking words from
God’s word and using them to seduce the nations. I believe transformation is one of these words. When
I hear the word used in the political realm, I sense the powers of darkness trying to rub our noses in the
word, so to speak, as if it to tell us that they will prevail to transform our nation and, for that matter, the
world, until everything is fully antichrist to the core.
But here is the good news; they will fail, for God will prevail, for He has placed His Son, the King, upon
Zion. A transformation, the likes of which this world has never seen, is coming. It is a transformation
that has begun and will soon be manifested for all the nations to see. To see this, we need a kingdom
view, a view of the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ, not a worldview of the kingdom of men.
Now, to understand God’s transformation that is coming, we need to turn to a few verses that contain
the Greek words metamorphoo , morphoo , and metaschematizo .
And he was transformed [metamorphoo] in their presence; his face shone as the sun, and
his garments became white as the light. (Matthew 17:2 BWD)
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being
transformed [metamorphoo] into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the
Lord, the Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:18 NASB)
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed [metamorphoo] by the
renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good
and acceptable and perfect. (Romans 12:2 NASB)
My children, with whom I am again in labor until Christ is formed [morphoo] in you….
(Galatians 4:19 NASB)
(20) For our realm is inherent in the heavens, out of which we are awaiting a Saviour
also, the Lord, Jesus Christ, (21) Who will transfigure [metaschematizo] the body of our
humilation, to conform it to the body of His glory, in accord with the operation which
enables Him even to subject all to Himself. (Philippians 3:20-21 CV)
All of the above verses have one thing in common; they refer to some type of change taking place as
revealed by the words transform , form , and transfigure .
In the New Testament, the Greek words metamorphoo and metaschematizo are translated into the
English words transform or transfigure . Concordantly speaking, the Greek word metamorphoo , which
appears four times (Matthew 17:2; Mark 9:2; Romans 12:2; 2 Corinthians 3:18), is best translated as
transform , and the Greek word metaschematizo , which appears five times (1 Corinthians 4:6; 2
Corinthians 11:13, 14, 15; Philippians 3:21) is best translated as transfigure . The word morphoo is
simply translated as form .
The obvious conclusion from these verses is that God’s transformation is not about institutions,
systems, and governments that make up and administer the kingdom of men but about a people that
will be God’s kingdom on earth. The transformation that is coming is the transformation of a people
into the likeness of God’s Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords.
As the three disciples stood on the mountain in the presence of Jesus, the Lord was changed; that is, He
appeared in glory. Many translations use the word transfigured instead of transformed , but
concordantly speaking, the Greek word would indicate transformed . On that day, Jesus stood as a type
of the many sons that will be transformed unto glory (Hebrews 2:10) to reign in the kingdom of God.
However, until that glorious day, we who have the seed of God residing within us (1 John 3:9) are being
changed into the same image, going from glory to glory as Christ is formed in us, transforming us by the
renewing of our minds so that we might have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16). This is an ongoing
work of the spirit of the Lord that will lead to the birth of a son of God coming forth at the resurrection.
This is why we are waiting for our Savior to come from heaven, for when He comes, not a day sooner,
He will transfigure our body to conform to the body of His glory. Paul explains it further.
(21) Creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of
the glory of the children of God. (23) And not only this, but also we ourselves … even we
ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the
redemption of our body. (24) For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not
hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? (25) But if we hope for what we do not see,
with perseverance we wait eagerly for it. (Romans 8:21, 23-25 NASB)
The transformation that we wait for, even long and groan for, is the redemption of our body. The world
does not know it today, but this is the transformation that it awaits as well, for the manifestation of the
sons of God is the one glorious event that will bring true and righteous change to the nations.
So, the next time you hear about transformational change, don’t look to a man for change; look to God’s
Man, our Lord Jesus, for He alone can and will transform and transfigure us. True hope and change is
expectant waiting for the love of our life to come and manifest the sons of God.
The Upward Call: #04-1030
by: Stuart H. Pouliot