1 John 3:2
Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we shall be. We know that, when He appears, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him just as He is.
Transformation—the process of becoming like Christ—is describes in 1Corinthians 15:51-54 as “a mystery,” and as a “change” that happens “in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye.” And here, in our text, John give us more information of how it happens. He says, “We shall be like Him, because we shall see Him just as He is.”
So, evidently, our transformation happens when He appears to us and we look at Him and see Him (not only with our eyes but with our mind). And then how exactly are we made like Him? What does it mean that “we shall be like Him”?
Well we know that we, even now, have a personality like His, and so we will then be able to relate to Him better as a person, and will have many personal likes. However, I think here it means primarily that we will have a glorified body like His, without sin (Rom. 8:29; 1 Cor. 15:42-49; Phil. 3:12-21).
Yet even though we will have this glorified body, that doesn’t mean that we will become deity. We will have glorified, sinless bodies like His, but we will always be subject to Him; we will never be gods.
The most intriguing thought about this transformation process to me is that it happens when we behold Him as He is. What does this mean? Well, we are not given any information, but here are a few verses we could look at.
2 Corinthians 3:18
But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.
The meaning here is that because we now have the Spirit of the Lord in us, and we have His word to reflect on, we can behold His glory “as in a mirror.” And that means that we are not now able to see Him clearly, for the mirrors in those days are not like our mirrors today; nevertheless, we are able to see Him with blurred vision. And there is with every Christian a transformation process going on even now? As we behold Him in the word and by His Spirit we are being transformed into His image, “from glory to glory.” That is, the more we look at Him in the word and trust Him, the more we become like Him.
Now because of our flesh we will never be fully glorified like Him. But when He comes and resurrects the dead and raptures the living believers, this is when we will finally see Him clearly as He is, for He will strip away our flesh and all sin; and so we will see Him clearly. At that moment His glory is transferred to us. Thus His glory will be our glory!
1 Corinthians 13:12
For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I shall know fully just as I also have been fully known.
This verse gives us basically the same information, except that it speaks of knowing Him. Presently our knowledge about Him is progressive but incomplete. But when He comes and we see Him our knowledge of Him will be complete; we will know Him thoroughly, just as He knows us.
Father, I desire that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am, in order that they may behold My glory, which Thou hast given Me; for Thou didst love Me before the foundation of the world.
Here Christ prays that we will one day behold His glory. The thought is that in heaven we will share His glory; and it seems that the way it will happen is that as we are looking at Him (and communicating with Him) His glory will be transferred to us. And this transfer of His glory I presume will happen continually throughout eternity.