Christians desire, more than anything else, that their relationship with God will be complete and perfect. That cannot happen in this world, where their present bodies suffer so much. What God has promised to them is very different from the experiences of their bodies now*.
However, Christians do not desire death, even as they would not desire to be without clothes. Instead, they desire to be with Christ*, and so to have life that never ends. God will cause their bodies to live again with a new kind of life. Paul compares that to someone who puts on new clothes*. In other words, it will still be the same person, but God will change that person completely.
God’s people wait eagerly for that wonderful future event. Until then, because of that deep desire, they ‘groan’*. So does everything that God has created*. So does the Spirit of God*. They all deeply desire that future age when the relationship between God and his people will be complete*.
Romans 8:22-26 and 2 Corinthians 5:2-4 repeat Paul’s word for ‘groan’, STENAZO in the Greek language. Perhaps ‘groan’ is not an ideal translation. ‘Groan’ means to make a deep, low sound, in order to express a sad feeling, or to complain. However, STENAZO means to have such a deep, sad feeling that we cannot express it. God’s people know great joy in God, but the state of this world makes them deeply sad. They have a deep desire that only God can satisfy*. He will not disappoint them. He has prepared the most wonderful things for them*. He will certainly complete all his promises to them*.
Next part: The Holy Spirit is the guarantee (5:5)
* See complete article for these Bible references.
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© 2016, Keith Simons.