For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. (2 Corinthians 5:1)
A Better House
The joy of moving into a new house is tempered by the exhaustion of relocating all the earthly possessions accumulated over the years. The fact remains that if it takes more than fifteen minutes to pack, there is more stuff than needed. Of course, few people can gather everything together in less than a few weeks with the task of packing, moving, unpacking, and finding a place for the abundance of things believed necessary to carry on life. Humans are a funny lot of creatures that spend their lives accumulating, protecting, insuring, fixing, and guarding temporary and never-lasting things. The smart mover will reduce the amount of clutter with each move. Still, when the end of the day comes, the stuff is nothing more than stuff and, there is a lot of that stuff. Sadly, when life is spent amassing possessions of this world, it is all left behind in death. What remains is for others to sort through and, by and large, get rid of. What was a precious trinket for the one becomes of little importance for the heirs. And the cycle continues through each generation.
God never intended for man to dwell on the earth gathering possessions, and yet it seems the primary purpose of life is about the stuff here and now. People work seven days a week all their lives and then die with nothing to show for their work. Billions of dollars are spent each year to redesign a failing machine destined to die. Man desires to live longer and fuller lives, so the focus is to extend the body’s life if possible. This is futile. The lesson from Methuselah is that he lived 969 years, and he died. No man can live beyond what God has established as his habitation, and only a few reach the centennial mark and beyond. The earthly house is destined for destruction. All that a man gathers in a lifetime of hoarding is destroyed or forgotten. Life’s cycle is absolute in its design. The body dies, and the possessions of life decay. What becomes life’s irony is why so much effort is spent trying to give life to a body that will die and why so much energy is expended to amass worldly goods that are not received in the grave?
The joy of Paul’s message to the Corinthians is to refocus the aims of life to realize the joy of a better house. There is a house provided by God that will not die and will not decay. When the human body dies, the Christian has the assurance of a new body given by the Father’s grace and love. This is not a building made by the hands of men but eternal in the heavens without end. It will never need medicine to keep its youthfulness. This better house will never move, relocate, or require maintenance. There will be no exhaustion, weariness, pain, sorrow, or tears in this better house. A house in heaven awaits the faithful who live to see the face of God. It will be a place that needs no sun, for the Father will be that light. The weakness of human flesh will be removed as God wipes away all the toils of life. Dwelling in the eternal city of Heaven, the child of God will dwell and abide with the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and the hosts of righteousness. And the best part is there will never come a moving day.