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Grace Lutheran Church Devotional: 2 Corinthians 5:1–10

By Administrator

July 4, 2024

We know that if the tent, which is our earthly home, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, 3if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked. 4For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened—not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. 5He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.

6So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, 7for we walk by faith, not by sight. 8Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. 9So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. 10For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.

Saint Paul compares our bodies to a tent, “the tent that is our earthly home.” Like a canvas camping tent, over time our bodies fade, deteriorate, and fall apart. Our bodies are damaged by time, natural elements, and toxins. However, the real problem is—we are victims of the wages of sin. Eventually this tent is destroyed because the wages of sin is death.

Our body preaches sermons to us all the time. The effects of a cold, the ache of arthritis, overtaxed muscles, allergies, cancer, and the list of pains goes on and on. These are all sermons of Law. All these maladies preach that you are fragile and vulnerable and that this tent does not last forever. In this life your body takes a beating and makes you groan. Paul says: “in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling” (2) which tells of an important distinction. If you groan because you think your body is the problem, you will despise and even curse the body God created for you. On the other hand, if you groan because the wages of sin and the toll it takes on your body is the problem, you will want to repent of your sin and trust Christ who by His forgiveness delivers you, body, and soul, from sin and death. As Christians we do not groan to be released from this body, we are eagerly waiting to be released from the burden of sin on it.

In this passage, Paul assures us that the Holy Trinity is at work in you; God the Father has created your body, God the Son has redeemed your body, and now God guarantees that you will have eternal life in an eternal body with eternal good health by giving you His Holy Spirit (cf. verse 5). And since the Triune God is at work in you, Paul can say, “So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, for we walk by faith, not by sight” (7). In this present life, we do not see the Lord, but we can see the effects the wages of sin have on our bodies by the pills we take, the hearing aids, the eyeglasses…you may even see the smudge on the MRI that means trouble. But Paul says, “Yes, we are of good courage” (8a), because as Christians we know that Christ fully redeems us. That is how Christians live: we endure the trials looking forward to “the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come” when this earthly tent with all the afflictions, suffering, and sorrow will be “a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.”

Grace Lutheran Church LCMS
825 North 1st West
Cheyenne Wells, CO, 80810-0728
Sunday Service begins at 9:00AM
Reverend Steven Zandstra

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