I am studying in the book of Revelation. The outline of this book is perfectly summed up in the words of Jesus found in chapter 1, verse 19 ~ ” ‘Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this.’ ” Though I had planned to delve into Revelation 4:1 (the Rapture!), God showed me some pretty amazing insights into another passage that I am excited to share instead.
“So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.” ~ 2 Corinthians 5:6-8
This little pearl speaks of when we will be in the presence of our Lord and Saviour. We are going to leave our bodies, these “earth suits” as our pastor likes to call them, behind and take our spirits – our souls, who we are – with us, and we will be given new heavenly bodies (Philippians 3:20-21, 2 Corinthians 5:1-5) when we are called home. Even at the harpotso or rapturo, when we are snatched out of and away from this world and called into the air to join Jesus and go home, we will exchange our old earthly bodies for new perfect ones (1 Corinthians 15:51-54).
As I looked into the Greek language used in this passage, it became clear that there is more to this than I had first read and understood.
“So we are always confident (tharreō = of good courage, of good cheer, bold), knowing (eidō = to get knowledge of, understand, perceive the force and meaning of something which has definite meaning) that while we are at home (endēmeō = to be among one’s own people, dwell in one’s own country, stay at home) in the body we are absent (ekdēmeō = to go abroad, emigrate, depart; to be or live abroad) from (apo = of any kind of separation of one thing from another by which the union or fellowship of the two is destroyed) the Lord. For we walk (peripateō = Hebrew for, to live; to regulate one’s own life, to conduct one’s self; to pass one’s life) by faith (pistis = conviction of the truth; belief that God exists and is the Almighty Creator, and that Jesus is the Son of God and Messiah, our eternal salvation), not by sight (eidos = the external or outward appearance, form, figure, shape). We are confident (tharreō, see above), yes, well pleased (eudokeō = it seems good to one; is one’s good pleasure; to do willingly; to be ready to, to prefer, to choose rather) rather to be absent (ekdēmeō, see above) from the body and to be present (endēmeō, see above) with the Lord.”
Okay, so here we go: “So we are always bold, of good courage and good cheer, understanding and perceiving this definite knowledge, that while we are in our own country, at home with our people, we are separated and without true union and fellowship with God. For we live our lives and conduct our selves by our conviction and belief in God Almighty and in His Son Jesus our Messiah, not by what we see externally or outwardly, or how things “shape up to be”. We are bold, of good courage and good cheer, yes, willingly ready to choose for our good pleasure, rather to emigrate, depart and live apart, separated and without true union and fellowship with the body, and to be among our own people, dwell in our own country, and stay at home with God.”
Whew. What a mouthful! My own heart’s paraphrase? “I take courage and good cheer in knowing that while I am living this life on earth, in this body, I am not truly home, in perfect fellowship with God. I live my life with the conviction and belief that God is who He says He is, and that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6) and my Lord and Saviour, and I choose to not let the things I see around me persuade me otherwise. I take courage and good cheer in being ready, willing, and able to choose to someday emigrate and depart this “earth suit” to be truly HOME, in the Spirit, with my Lord and Saviour and my Heavenly Father, forever in fellowship, forever in love.”
This world is not our home, Christian! We are aliens in a strange land. Don’t get all comfy and settle into this life and this decaying body. “For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven,” ~ 2 Corinthians 5:2
Live your life with faith and conviction, shining a light in the darkness and sharing your faith and hope with those around you.
We are waiting to emigrate, whenever God calls us to Him, from these “earth suits” into our heavenly bodies and eternal home, where we will have perfect fellowship with Him and dwell among our own people, forever.
How’s that for a little encouragement this Monday morning? 🙂