Omar C. Garcia | Bible Teaching Notes
Saturday, May 18, 2013
2 Corinthians 5
5:1 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle [tent or temporary shelter] were dissolved [at death], we have a building [a resurrection body fit for heaven] of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.
5:2 For in this we groan [this verb used six times in NT (Mk. 7:34; Rom. 8:23; 2 Cor. 5:2,4; Heb. 13:17; Jas. 5:9); noun used in Acts 7:34 and Rom. 8:26; audible sighing because of a condition from which one longs to be free, in this case sighing due to limitations imposed by living in a mortal body], earnestly desiring [anticipation of receiving an immortal body] to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven:
5:3 If so be that being clothed [with the resurrection body] we shall not be found naked [death is like stripping off rotten and worn-out garments].
[at death][a resurrection body fit for heaven]
5:4 For we that are in this tabernacle [our mortal bodies] do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life [cf. 1 Cor. 15:54].
5:5 Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest [down payment; cf. 2 Cor. 1:22; Eph. 1:14; Rom. 8:9] of the Spirit [received at the new birth (cf. Jn. 3:5-8)].
5:6 Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body [physically alive], we are absent from the Lord [in the sense that we do not perceive Him with our physical senses]:
5:7 (For we walk by faith [cf. Rom. 1:17 (Hab. 2:4)], not by sight:)
[cf. 1 Cor. 15:54]
5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body [after death], and to be present with the Lord [cf. Phil. 1:23].
5:9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present [physically alive] or absent [physically dead], we may be accepted [the central purpose of our lives should be to please God] of him.
5:10 [cf. 1 Cor. 3:12-15] For we must all appear before the judgment seat [Gr. bema used originally of the place from which an earthly ruler gave legal decisions; cf. Rom. 14:10] of Christ [Paul did not indicate whether this judgment occurs immediately after a believer dies (as context suggests) or whether this will be a general judgment involving many persons at once]; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good [actions that conform to God’s revealed word] or bad [actions contrary to God’s revealed word].
[cf. Phil. 1:23]
5:11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.
5:12 For we commend not ourselves again unto you, but give you occasion to glory on our behalf, that ye may have somewhat to answer them which glory in appearance, and not in heart.
5:13 For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause.
5:14 For the love of Christ [are you motivated by love or fear?] constraineth ["controls" (NASB); "urges us on" (NRSV); "leaves us no choice" (NEB)] us [all believers, not just Paul]; because we thus judge, that if one died [the highest expression of divine love for sinners] for all [Jesus’ death was sufficient for all people of every age], then were all dead [Christ’s death was a substitutionary atonement]:
Note: What effect does Christ’s love have in your life?
5:15 And that he died for all [even though not all will accept Him as Savior], that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves [those who believe in Jesus should abandon their old, selfish ways], but unto him which died for them, and rose again.
5:16 Wherefore henceforth [Christians have a new and different perspective on people] know we no man after the flesh [an inadequate standard by which to measure others]: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh [Paul once judged Christ by earthly standards and looked at Him as a blasphemer and a fraud], yet now henceforth know we him no more [after conversion, Paul saw Jesus in a different light; cf. Acts 9:1-18].
Note: What is the difference between seeing people through a worldly point of view and seeing them through spiritual eyes?
5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature [a new kind of human being—one who is in Christ]: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new [those who place their faith in Christ have a new destiny, a new direction, and new desires in life].
5:18 And all things are of God, who [God took the initiative] hath reconciled [to restore to harmony after a break] us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation [we are responsible for telling others what they need to do if they want to be reconciled to God];
Note: Do you believe that every person deserves the opportunity to hear the good news? What responsibility are you willing to assume to ensure that others hear the message about Jesus?
5:19 To wit, that God was in Christ [the incarnate Son], reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing [counting or calculating people’s debt] their trespasses [the obstacle to our relationship with God] unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation [the gospel].
5:20 Now then we [all believers] are [being an ambassador for Christ is not optional for a believer] ambassadors [an official representative of one country to another; believers have the privilege of representing God on earth] for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us [note the content of God’s appeal through us…]: we pray [to beg; a reminder that we cannot remain passive about the lost condition of the world] you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.
Note: Someone said that believers are the only Jesus some will ever see. Is there anything that keeps others from seeing Jesus in you? If so, what will you do to insure that others see Jesus clearly?
5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us [means that Jesus died a sinner’s death; He took our sins upon Himself; refers to substitutionary atonement; Jesus took the place of sinners; cf. Isa. 53:5], who knew no sin [Christ was sinless; cf. Heb. 4:15; 7:26]; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.