Groan

For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling   2 Corinthians 5:2

Please read and/or listen to 2 Corinthians 4:7-5:10 again today. Also read and/or listen to Romans 8:18-25. Paul is familiar with what it means to long for heaven and for the freedom from the presence of sin that will happen there. He uses the metaphor of a tent to make his point. As a tentmaker, he would be very familiar with the temporary nature of a tent. A tent is not a permanent housing situation. It is, by very nature, a temporary dwelling. It will tear. It will wear out. It will waste away. Repairs can be made, but storms and age will eventually render it destroyed. This is how Paul sees the mortal body we now have. At the time of this writing, there was a philosophy that the body was evil and that it restrained the soul. So, there was a longing among that group that the body should be eliminated so that a freedom could exist. The body held the soul back from being what it could be. They wished to have the tent destroyed for a much different reason than Paul. For them it was a step into some sort of nirvana. Paul did not long to be a disembodied soul. Quite the opposite, he longed not to be found naked—without a body. He groaned in longing for the heavenly body that would be like that of the risen Christ (Philippians 3:21). Paul knew the battle that his mortal body faced each day. He knew that there was more waiting. The mortal body is what is needed to do the battle necessary in this fallen world, but the heavenly dwelling is what is needed for the eternal existence in the presence of God. This tent will suffer as it awaits the hope of the heavenly dwelling. Are you groaning as you long for your heavenly dwelling? Does the sinful nature of this mortal body cause you to groan for the dwelling that will allow you to live forever with God—not sinning?