The Two Bodies of the Saint
2 Corinthians 5:1-9
For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands…


1. Frail.

2. Perishing.

3. Often a burden.

4. Frequently a temptation.

5. Not helpful to spiritual life.

6. Subject to many pains.

7. Debased.


1. Eternal. (Ver. 1.) Having no tendencies towards decay, no marks of coming death. A body of life. Stamped with the eternalness of God.

2. Heavenly. (Ver. 1.) The first body is of the earth, earthy; the second body is spiritual and heavenly in origin and character. Capable of heavenly joys. Fitted for heavenly service. Free from earthly weaknesses, pains, and soil.

3. From God. (Ver. 1.) The present body is this in a certain sense, but it has passed through the hands of the devil. The resurrection body shall be of God and only of God, his unmarred workmanship. It shall be like the glorified body united to Deity in the person of Jesus Christ: "Who shall fashion anew the body of our humiliation, that it may be conformed to the body of his glory" (Philippians 3:21).

III. THE SAINT'S CONDITION WHILST IN THE EARTHLY BODY. Frequently a condition of sorrow. "We that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened" (ver. 4). There are

(1) the ordinary afflictions which befall mankind;

(2) the special chastisements of God inflicted for the saint's welfare, but still painful;

(3) the sense of living in a strange country, not in his own - uncongenial surroundings;

(4) struggles against temptations: the presence and power of hated sin.


1. Revelation.

2. Preparation. "He that wrought us for this very thing" (ver. 5).

3. The Spirit's witness. We have the earnest of the Spirit, which is a pledge of the fulness of the Spirit (ver. 5). In the next life we shall be dominated by the Spirit; shall have a spiritual body - one pervaded by the Spirit. The apostle's confidence is strong; he says, "We know;" there was no uncertainty about the matter.

V. THE SAINT'S LONGING FOR THE HEAVENLY BODY. The desire is very intense especially when the lot is hard and the nature spiritual. "We groan, longing to be clothed upon with our habitation which is from heaven" (ver. 2). The paramount attraction is, however, not in the body itself, but. in the fact that the union with Christ will be closer. We shall be present with the Lord - at home with the Lord (ver. 8). Now we walk by faith; then we shall see him as he is, and be like him. The gaining of the heavenly body will be the gain of closer access to our Lord, and will be the entering into our heavenly home, out of which we shall go no more forever.


1. The intermediate state between death and the resurrection will probably not be so perfect as that which follows.

2. There is a natural shrinking from death. "Not for that we would be unclothed, but that we would be clothed upon" (ver. 4). The apostle seems to desire what is expressed in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 - a translation, not death and tarrying for the resurrection.

VII. THE SAINT'S RESOLUTION WHETHER IN THE EARTHLY OR HEAVENLY BODY. To please Christ. This the apostle made his "aim" (ver. 9). This was his supreme ambition. He resolved to live, not to himself, but to Christ and for Christ. Note, that the life for the heavenly and earthly body is to be the same. We must do now what we hope to do by and by. Heavenly life in the earthly body is the preparation for the heavenly life in the heavenly body. - H.

Parallel Verses
KJV: For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

WEB: For we know that if the earthly house of our tent is dissolved, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal, in the heavens.

The Tent Dissolved and the Mansion Entered
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