2 Corinthians 5:2 ~ "For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling."
All of mankind across the world walks through life stirred up with various longings in their heart and mind. Passions, hungers and desires fill up our pursuits. A hungry man longs for food. A lonely man desires companionship. A bound man craves to be free.
David longed for the waters of Bethlehem. "And David said longingly, 'Oh, that someone would give me water to drink from the well of Bethlehem that is by the gate!'" (2 Samuel 23:15)
The prodigal son longed for food. "And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything." (Luke 15:16)
Jacob longed to return home. "And now you have gone away because you longed greatly for your father's house." (Genesis 31:30a)
For those who are in Christ, there is a longing in their hearts to be clothed in the fullness of His righteousness, to put on our "heavenly dwelling." Is this what you long for?
It will first be seen in your groanings against sin. Paul said, "for in this tent we groan." The "tent" he speaks of is our "earthly home" (see 2 Corinthians 5:1). But what does that mean? Is it referring to the earth upon which we walk? No... our current, "earthly home," is this body in which our spirit dwells. We are contained within this body of sin and groan against the continued presence of the sinful disposition.
Consider what Paul said in Romans 7:24, "Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?" The Apostle recognized the reality that we still dwell in a body that is sinful, wretched and dead. He says in Romans 8:10, "But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness."
And so we groan. We mourn over our continued sinfulness, longing to be free from the constant companion of temptations and the continued war against our fallen flesh. There will be those who groan against the judgment of God, longing for the pleasures of their sinful desires. But for the Christian--you, if you are in Christ--there is grief over the continued presence of sin, and we groan against it.
But the believer does more than groan against sin, he also longs to be covered with the perfect righteousness of Christ, to be clothed with our "heavenly dwelling." We will someday put off our mortal nature for immortality as we read in 1 Corinthians 15:54, "When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”
True longing changes the pursuit of the life. Those who long for something will set aside other, lesser considerations and be fixed upon that one goal. More than a wishful thinking or a minimal wanting of the heart, those who long for Christ and His righteousness have a passionate, intense craving for that which He will provide.
So, what do you long for? Do you still desire to satisfy the cravings of the sinful nature or do you hunger for the righteousness of Christ? Remember, longing for something means that you have not quite attained it--but it is the driving passion of your heart.
Remember the promise of Romans 2:7, "to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life." You do not earn your salvation. But for those who are saved, it will be seen in that for which we long.
In His Grace,
From the Mountains to the Sea
Every step we take on this journey called life ought to be used for greater understanding. I've lived from the mountains to the sea, and this blog is my personal thoughts and observations with a desire for Biblical understanding. Welcome.