But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.
For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will take me in. And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace.
In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world. The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. I am the door.
If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things that must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John,.
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.
And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known.
And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. I and the Father are one. This God—his way is perfect; the word of the Lord proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. And from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever.
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins. And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. The Lord has taken away the judgments against you; he has cleared away your enemies. The King of Israel, the Lord , is in your midst; you shall never again fear evil.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. And to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Cast your burden on the Lord , and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved. For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. Therefore, when we are joined to Him in resurrection, we are joined to Him in His Spirit of resurrection.
This is very clear.
We die to all that belongs to ourselves and live to His Spirit. This is the meaning here. When we are joined to His death, having lost all that is sinful and natural, and joined to the Lord in resurrection life, then our spirit is joined to the Lord to be one spirit. The result of this kind of union is that we serve in newness of spirit, without any mixture. The cross is the foundation of all things. The cross must work deeply on the negative, destructive side to make the believer lose everything sinful and natural.
The result of this union is the capacity to serve the Lord in "newness of the spirit. This is the ascension life. The believer is joined to the Lord who is at the right hand of God.
The Head and the Body have the same flowing life. After the believer is joined to the resurrected Lord, the believer must daily keep "reckoning" and "yielding. This is because the Lord is not only the Spirit but the "life-giving Spirit. His spirit is full of life and nothing can limit this life because his spirit is closely joined to the life-giving Spirit. Now what does he see when he looks to the unseen glory? As he goes on in chapter five he fills in some of what he sees as he looks at the unseen.
Now the next two messages concern these verses: But neither of these is the focus of this message. So if I pass over something too quickly, read the next sermon. Verses 1—5 are about the hope of receiving new, glorious bodies at the resurrection. Our focus is on verses 6—8, the hope of being with Christ immediately when you die. But let me read you the verses about the resurrection body because there is a crucial connection between this hope and the hope of being with Christ without a new body immediately when you die.
Now He who prepared us for this very purpose is God, who gave to us the Spirit as a pledge. If Paul had his preference, he would choose to receive his new resurrection body at the second coming of Christ without having to die. But does that mean that dying and going to be with Christ does not happen, or that it is not good? Paul puts things back in perspective again in verses 6—8. Therefore, being always of good courage, and knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord [the full intimacy we long for is not possible here] — for we walk by faith, not by sight — we are of good courage, I say, and prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord.
That would be his first preference. But if that is not possible — if the choice is between more life here by faith and going to be with Christ — he prefers that God would take him; EVEN IF it means nakedness, that is, even if it means that he must be stripped of his body. And the reason for this willingness to leave his body behind is not because the body is bad — O, how he wants the experience of the new resurrection body — but because being at home with the Lord is so irresistibly attractive to Paul. So Paul renews his inner man by looking to unseen things.
He looks at three possibilities and prefers them in descending order. First, he prefers that Christ would come and clothe his mortal body with immortality so that he would not have to die and be an incomplete, disembodied soul. But if God does not will that, Paul prefers to be absent from the body to living on here, because he loves Christ more than he loves anything else.
To be absent from the body will mean to be at home with the Lord; a deeper intimacy and greater at-homeness than anything we can know in this life. Finally, if God wills that it is not time for the second coming or time for death, then Paul will walk by faith and not by sight. In that faith he will be of good courage and, even though his outer man is decaying, his inner man will be renewed day-by-day through this faith in the unseen weight of glory.
Do you share these biblical priorities and values in life? Do you long mainly for the second coming? And secondly, do you long to be at home with Christ even if it costs you the surrender of your body? Third, are you committed to walk by faith until he comes or until he calls? What Happens When You Die? At Home with the Lord. Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.
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.