Groaning Bodies (Romans 8:22-25)

And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.” (Romans 8:23, KJV 1900)

Every day there seems to be a new ache and pain, a new malady with which I must contend. This is the story of the aging body. I think back to the days when I was in my twenties and in military service. In those days the aches and pains were from strenuous exercise. They were good kinds of pain. Today the pains are signs of aging. This is the simple fact of life. Our bodies have a limited lifespan. At some point they stop growing and getting stronger and begin to fade away. Just as the creation is experiencing this process so are our mortal bodies.

Yet, we have this hope. This hope is a confident expectation of a future redemption of the body. Just as the creation groans waiting for redemption, so do we. We long for the day when this fading mortal body will be resurrected in a glorified state. And it will happen for all who have truly come to faith in Christ alone.

This new body will be even better than the body of my youth. For this body will no longer be subject to the laws of death and decay. As good as I felt when in my twenties, in this new glorified body I will feel infinitely better than then. Now, it is not possible for me to understand this fully, but one day I will experience it. Paul states that this new body will be imperishable, glorious, powerful and spiritual (1 Cor 15:24-44). He goes on to say that in some way we shall bear the image of Christ (1 Cor 15:49).

There is still much mystery regarding exactly what this experience of having the redemption of our bodies will be like. We have in the Scriptures just a glimpse. But this glimpse gives us much hope. It gives us so much hope, that we patiently endure with steadfastness. Paul also wrote to the Corinthians, “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.” (2 Corinthians 4:16, KJV 1900) Thus, we continue to serve the Lord with confidence, not in our own strength, but through the inward renewal worked in us by the Spirit every day.

Published by Steve Hankins, Th.D.

Steve has had extensive military, business and ministry experience. He has served for over 16 years in full time vocational ministry and many years of part time ministry in churches. He has led churches through start-up and recasting of vision. Now He resides on the Outer Banks of North Carolina where he is working to help smaller churches and believers to renew their hearts and regain the joy of the Lord.

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