2 Corinthians 5:1-5 ESV
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 hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked. For 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. He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
The tent that is our earthly home is our physical bodies. So, if our earthly bodies are destroyed, through physical death, we who have trusted in Jesus Christ to be Lord and Savior of our lives have an eternal home in heaven with God. And, that is our hope, that one day we will be with our Lord face-to-face for eternity.
But, in the meanwhile, we groan, i.e. we have pain, suffering, difficulties, and heartaches, and we battle the flesh, sin, fear and Satan on a regular basis. Every day, by the Spirit, we have to put our flesh and our propensity to sin against God to death. We have to die daily to the desires of our sinful flesh and daily yield our spirits over to our Lord to do his will (See: Lu. 9:23-25; Rom. 6:1-23; Rom. 8:1-17; Eph. 4:17-24; Gal. 5:19-21; Gal. 6:7-8).
We, in these flesh bodies, therefore long for that day when we will be with our Lord face-to-face for eternity, when our sorrows will be over. Then we will no longer be tempted to sin and to stray from our God. Then, we won’t have Satan breathing down our necks, tempting us to sin against God and to give way to fear. We won’t be facing rejection, cruelty and persecution from other people, either, and we won’t have sickness and pain any longer.
And, we don’t have to just hope that one day we will go to heaven to be with God, in the sense of wishful thinking, either. We can have that assurance that our sins are forgiven, and that heaven is our eternal destiny. But, we have to understand what scripture teaches on that subject, for it states clearly that our faith must be current (present tense), and it must continue to the very end, i.e. it must persist until Jesus returns to take us home.
And, it states that genuine faith in Jesus Christ means we no longer walk (in lifestyle) according to the flesh, but we now walk (conduct our lives daily) according to (in agreement with) the Spirit of God. Thus, it is we, by the Spirit, who are living to the Spirit and not to the flesh who have this guarantee of eternal life with God (See same scriptures as listed above).
2 Corinthians 5:6-10 ESV
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. Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. For 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.
Yet, we are always of good courage, whether we are still living in these earthly bodies or whether we are at home with our Lord in heaven, because our lives are in the palm of God’s hands, and he is watching over us. And, he will strengthen and empower us daily to survive these days we live on this earth, and to be victorious over the enemy, and to walk in freedom from sin.
So, we walk by faith and not by sight, because not one of us knows what is going to happen to us today, truly. We do have control over our own decisions, and the choices we make in this life, but we can’t control other people, or nature, or God, or our circumstances which are out of our control. So, each day we step out into this world, and we place our lives in God’s hands, and we trust him with our lives, and then we let him lead the way.
But, while we still live in these earthly bodies, as well as what will take place when we are with him for eternity, we make it our aim to please God (Jesus Christ) in all that we do and say and are. We won’t be perfect, because we still live in these flesh bodies, but lack of perfection should never be used as an excuse for continuous willful sinful rebellion against our Lord. For, we will all reap what we sow (Gal. 6:7-8), no matter what our lips profess.
2 Corinthians 5:11-15 ESV
Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others. But what we are is known to God, and I hope it is known also to your conscience. We are not commending ourselves to you again but giving you cause to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast about outward appearance and not about what is in the heart. For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.
Knowing the fear of the Lord means we understand that we can’t play religion with God. We take God and his Word seriously, to heart. We believe God’s Word when it says that those who walk according to the flesh will die in their sins and that we will all reap what we sow. We believe that we are not saved from our sins by a mere profession of faith or by some one-time decision we made to receive Christ while we then continued in sinful and willful rebellion against God. And, we don’t take God’s grace for granted.
And, since we know this fear of the Lord, i.e. this awe, respect, honor and value of our God, and our belief that his words are true, and that he will do what he said he would do, we try to persuade others. We share the truth with others so that they are not led astray by clever enchanters who tell them that they can merely acknowledge Christ as Savior but that it doesn’t have to impact their lifestyles. And, we share with them that Jesus died, not just to forgive us our sins, but to deliver us out of our sinful lifestyles.
For, because Jesus Christ died for all sins, once for all, and he put all sin to death on that cross, we who believe on him to be our Lord and Savior also die with him to sin that we might live with him to righteousness. For, he didn’t die to forgive us our sins so that we could go on in our sins guilt free. He gave his life up for us on that cross, instead, so that we might no longer live for ourselves and in sin, but so we would live for him who died for us.
He Reached Down
An Original Work / February 3, 2014
Based off Psalm 18
How I love You, Lord, my Rock and my strength.
My God is my fortress; I hide in Him.
He is my shield and the horn of
My salvation, whom I praise.
I have found my refuge in Him.
He reached down from heaven and rescued me;
Drew me out of waters so deep, I’d sink.
He delivered me from Satan
And my slavery to sin;
Gave me hope of heaven with Him.
My God turned my darkness into His light;
Opened up my blinded eyes; gave me sight.
As for God, his way is perfect.
He gives strength to stand secure.
I have found my vict’ry in Him.
My Lord lives! Praise be to my Savior God,
Jesus Christ, who died on a cruel cross.
He is my Rock and the source
Of my salvation, whom I trust.
I will give praise always to Him.
Friday, April 5, 2019, 4:00 a.m.