Sunday, 2 August 2015
For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven, 2 Corinthians 5:2
“For” builds upon verse 1 as Paul continues to show the state we are in now and the anticipation of what lies ahead. “In this” is speaking of the “earthly house” which he also calls a “tent.” Our current bodies are temporary and earthly. Because of this, they are susceptible to corruption and decay. In this state “we groan.” Paul uses this thought elsewhere, such as in Romans 8 –
“For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.” Romans 8:22, 23
Our “eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body” of Romans 8 is the same idea as “desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven” found here.
The “habitation” that he speaks of is the Greek word ependuomai. It is found only here and in verse 4 of this chapter and it indicates an outer covering. It is comparable to the ependutes, or “outer garment,” found in John 21:7 –
“Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his outer garment (for he had removed it), and plunged into the sea.”
The idea that we may draw from Paul’s words is that our current “tent” is temporary and not what was originally intended for man. Instead, it is a part of the fallen creation and is actually in an unnatural state. Our true and intended state “is from heaven” and will be pure, eternal, and exceedingly glorious in comparison to what we now have.
It is significant that Peter’s actions in John 21:7 come after the resurrection of Christ and they are specifically noted by John, thus indicating a picture for us to see. He was fishing in an “unclothed state” but when he heard it was the Lord waiting for them, he put on his outer garment that he might not be naked any longer. It is a connection that will continue to be seen in the verses ahead.
Life application: This body isn’t how we are supposed to be. It is failing and temporary. Instead, we have a far better body awaiting us. As this is so, why should we degrade ourselves now with the temporary lusts of life when everything connected to it will perish? Let us act in holiness now as we await that which is truly holy, and in which we will be clothed for eternity.
Lord God, I am in eager anticipation of what lies ahead for Your redeemed. There is a glory that we cannot even imagine yet. I ache for the body which will never break down, never get tired, and never desire to sin against You. As this current body is temporary, help me to use it in a manner which glorifies You as I await the home which is truly my home. And may that day be really soon! Even so, come Lord Jesus. Amen.