Monday, January 11

Consider His Benefits - Part 3

2 Corinthians 5:1-5

1 For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. 2 We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long to put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. 3 For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. 4 While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. 5 God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.

Paul clearly saw things by revelation that most of us have never seen nor will ever see before we die.

Think through what you just read. I mean really think it through. "Spirits without bodies". New bodies. Longing for new bodies like new clothes. Earthly bodies vs. eternal bodies.

Dying, sighing, groaning and longing .... those seem to be the stuff of life for a Christian. Not exactly how the gospel was "sold" to me. It was sold to us as: "Come to God and all will be taken care of." God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life." "Your best life now." Do you have a hard time reconciling these things?

Maybe Paul was a special person with a special burden? Maybe this was HIS story and not universal to all believers? But as I read it, the "we" makes it sound like this is universal to all believers in all times. It sounds as if we all carry this knowledge (v.1) like we know how to tie a shoe or make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

We "know", says Paul, that God has better things for us when we die. We "know" that to be with Him is very much better. We "know" this for certain because the Holy Spirit was given to us to guarantee what was to come.

So, to the pilgrim, to the traveler, to the alien and the stranger, this passage rings out truth... this life is no friend to those that want to walk godly in Christ Jesus. This life is not the easy road.

BUT God has worked against the natural forces of death and decay. He has promised to take care of that and has. He has put a large down payment (v.5) to prove to us that He will do what He says.

Those are benefits of being in Christ. Consider His benefits!

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