In C. S. Lewis’s book, Mere Christianity, he quotes 19th century preacher and author George MacDonald. He wrote,
“Imagine yourself as a living house and God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on. You knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently he starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of. He’s throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, and making courtyards. You thought you were going to be made into a decent little cottage, but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.
The command from Matthew 5:48 that says, ‘Be ye perfect’ is not idealistic gas, nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that can obey that command. He said (in the Bible) that we were ‘gods’ and He is going to make good His words. If we let Him – for we can prevent Him, if we choose – He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess; a dazzling, radiant, immortal creature, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to God perfectly. Though, of course, on a smaller scale, His own boundless power and delight and goodness will shine brightly . The process will be long and in parts very painful, but that is what we are in for. Nothing less. He meant what He said.”
As I read this quote a few days ago, my first impulse was to think, “Well, there is no way that He can make me into a god!” This was my response because I know myself all to well. But then I pondered this for a couple of days and began to soften my stance considerably. I learned that the word god used here simply refers to those who have been called to perform their duties in a Christlike manner. Additionally, the redeemed will serve Him in eternity with authority even over the angels.
When I was born again slightly over forty years ago, I would begin a process that would continue for the rest of my life. It had fallen to me to begin a journey toward becoming as much like Jesus as humanly possible. This process is called sanctification, and it will continue as long as I live.
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17
The bar was set by God in the Garden of Eden at perfection. Mankind was created as perfect beings with the capacity to make decisions to maintain that state. However, Adam and Eve chose to lower the bar by disobeying the Word of God and partaking of the forbidden fruit. The penalty for this disobedience was death, which continues even to this very day. A loving and compassionate God made a provision whereby mankind could be forgiven for their sins by simply placing their trust in the shed blood of Jesus, the Son of God. They would still die a physical death, but they would live eternally in the presence of their Savior.
And so, if we are willing to allow it, God will be working on this house (tabernacle) we currently live in until the day of its dedication comes. It will be incredibly spectacular!