Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A House Not Made With Hands 8/14/2013

"For we know that if the earthly tent which is our house is torn down, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For indeed in this house we groan, longing to be clothed with our dwelling from heaven," 2 Corinthians 5:1-2

It was God who instructed Moses to build a Tabernacle (or tent) which was to be His dwelling place among men. The instructions were very exact and included specifics regarding measurements, materials, design and contents. Naturally, the Tabernacle would suffer wear and tear due to movement and the natural deterioration of materials. Ultimately it was superseded by a lavish brick and mortar building with inner walls of gold. It was quite glorious to see. Even this, however, was merely a shadow of the heavenly dwelling place of God (Hebrews 8:5; 9:24).

Beloved, as God once established a dwelling place among men that was made by human hands, He now makes his dwelling place within our bodies. The apostle Paul rhetorically asked, "Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?" 1 Corinthians 6:19. Being made with hands, though, it will eventually go the way of the old Tabernacle. Otherwise put, all of our physical bodies will one day die. The good news for Christians, however, is that as God occupies a permanent dwelling in heaven, so too shall our essential selves receive a new and permanent dwelling place; it will be a new body NOT made through the efforts of human flesh, but given to each of us by the very hand of our eternal Father.

It is natural for human beings to deteriorate bodily and to fear death. To this Paul said, "Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day" 2 Corinthians 4:16. He expressed both hope and joy when he said, "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain," Philippians 1:21. Lastly, he revealed that it is a necessary part of the plan to obtain an eternity with the Father when he said, "Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable" 1 Corinthians 15:50.

Let us now enjoy the life we have been given and do the work that has been set before us. Let us also look forward to the life to come and the new bodies that will allow us to experience eternity.



No comments: