Bodily Suffering

2 Corinthians 5:1-5, For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with human hands, eternal in the heavens. For int his tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked. For whilst we are 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. He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.

Paul calls our current bodies a tent—a temporary dwelling, and in this tent we experience much groaning. Illness, disease, and injury cause us to cry out to God and this groaning increases in old age. People of all ages groan of cancer, depression, anxiety, lost limbs, autoimmune diseases, plagues, pestilence, and so on. We long for something better, believers and unbelievers alike. Thus, Paul points the Corinthians to the bodily resurrection, the promise in which we share.

Life in this tent of ours will be filled with much groaning, but Christ is preparing for us an eternal home in Heaven (cf. John 14:2), and our bodies will be restored perfectly at the resurrection. This is our inheritance (Ephesians 1:11), and in Baptism God has given us the Holy Spirit as the guaranteer fo this inheritance.

Therefore, if you are suffering in your body, and you have the Holy Spirit, your inheritance of the bodily resurrection into God’s kingdom is absolutely guaranteed. Look, therefore, to Christ and the resurrection in your bodily suffering and cling to this sure promise.

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