“We, too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as his adopted children, including the new bodies he has promised us” (Romans 8:23b, NLT).
In ancient Roman times, a young man came of age when his father decided he was ready, at which time he was fully adopted as a son and given all the rights and privileges of an heir. Until that time, he was no better than a slave, had no freedoms and made no decisions. No doubt boys looked forward to the celebration and realization of their entry into adulthood.
Christians, by virtue of being united with Christ, are already God’s sons and daughters, but as I’ve mentioned before, we realize this in a now-but-not-yet way. We are a bit like the Roman boys who, though members of the family, were still under the protection and authority of their fathers and didn’t yet function as adults, even as older teenagers. Our adoption by a loving Father is already final, and with eager hope and anticipation, we have many good things to look forward to, including bodies as glorious as that of the risen Christ.