“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.” 2 Corinthians 5:1
In 2 Corinthians 5:1, the Apostle Paul describes the physical body as a house. The word “home” in this verse literally means, “house.” It is important that you don’t confuse you with your house. You are not your body. You live in your body and your body is the house that you live in. You move into it when you are born and you move out of it when you die.
In a real sense, people don’t get sick; bodies get sick. People don’t grow old; bodies grow old. That is what Paul meant in 2 Corinthians 4:16 when he said, “So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.” It is possible to be growing older on the outside while you are growing younger on the inside. Paul refers to our “outer nature” or “body” as “wasting away.” That word literally means, “decay.” That is exactly what houses do, don’t they? Over time houses do decay. They grow old and things begin to fall apart. The paint begins to peel off. The plumbing has to be replaced. It’s just what happens as a house ages.
Have you ever wondered why God built decay into our house? Why did God put us into a body that is dying from the moment it is born? It is because this body was never meant to be your final house. God never wants us to be totally at home in this house…for this temporary body is not our home. Your body has an expiration date and your soul has a moving date.
In the beginning, when God created Adam and Eve, they were free to eat from the Tree of Life freely. However, once they disobeyed God and fell into sin, God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the Tree of Life and eat, and live forever (Genesis 3:22).” Once man was no longer allowed to eat the life-giving fruit of the Tree of Life, death was imminent. Immediately, Adam and Eve began to age and their days on this earth were numbered.
For believers in Jesus Christ, the aging and death of our bodies is a blessing. Death releases us from this decaying body and ushers us into the presence of our Savior. Because of Jesus, death does not have the final say our story. It is just the beginning of eternity with the One who made us for His glory.
5Application: Do you fear death, or have you placed your faith in the One who defeated death and removed its sting forever?