Paul Explains how we long for the Consummation of our New Birth
Romans 8:23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body. NKJV
Paul expressed the true condition of the earth and all of creation as he compared what we see springing forth from it to a woman in the latter stages of pregnancy as she begins to have her first pains which signal the pending birth of the baby. Just like the woman begins to be in pain so is our earth and the entire creation sprouting forth the results of man’s original sin by what we see through earthquakes and volcanic eruptions that have been occurring ever since the fall in the Garden of Eden. Paul now steps up to compare those of us who have been born again to our earth and creation and to the woman experiencing birth pains. Paul already told us earlier that the things we (born again children of God) suffer as we live in a world of once born souls or people who are still energized by the prince of the power of the air (the devil) won’t hold a candle to the magnificent, miraculous, and mighty glory that is yet to be revealed or the Greek word apokalupto (which means to uncover, lay open what has been veiled or covered up to make known, make manifest, disclose what before was unknown) in us by virtue of our new birth. When we were born again we received only the down payment of what we will be forever as we live in the awesome presence of our Lord Jesus Christ in heaven (Ephesians 1:13-14 & 1 Corinthians 2:9 & 2 Corinthians 1:22).
Immediately and continually we are groaning wanting to be released from the restrictions placed upon us by our earthly habitation our body and put on the heavenly habitation our glorified body made in the same likeness as our Lord’s Eternal Body. Paul used the English word groan and it is a good translation from the Greek word stenazo which means to be in straits, to sigh or murmur or to pray inaudibly with grief. Paul is here conveying that those of us who have become partakers of the Divine Nature (2 Peter 1:4) are like that woman about to give birth to her baby in pain and discomfort moaning and groaning within ourselves as we sense the glory that is bottled up inside this new man or new creation that we have become in our Lord Jesus Christ. The daily warfare with principalities and powers and internal sin as well as the assaults from the world loaded down with sin we know will be over forever when we come face to face with our Lord Jesus Christ. We have for right now only been delivered partially from this body of death because our earthly bodies will still die, but we will soon have the full completion of our adoption consummated by this body of death being removed forever and our glorified body put on forever. In us is the new man or woman the born son or daughter waiting to be unveiled to the entire Universe of our Heavenly Father.
Titus 2:13-14 Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. NKJV
Romans 8:24-25 For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. NKJV
Paul now affirms that this unction, uneasiness, and unresolvedness is the normal and appropriate response or reaction from the sinner who has been recreated internally and made into a son or daughter of God by the greatest miracle in all of the Universe the new birth. Our redemption has not yet been brought into its final conclusion and this pours out from the deep depths of our souls longing to see the very Face and bask in the love of the Son of God who purchased us when we were worth nothing and unworthy to even tie His Sandal Straps as John the Baptist so reverently said. Paul calls it “hope”, however, the Greek word that this English word is translated from does not mean the same as our English definition which is to expect and wish or to be optimistic or to intend with some possibility of fulfillment. Maybe this was the closest English word that could be found to match the Greek word elpis. Elpis on the other hand means CONFIDENT EXPECTATION. Truly I don’t know why they did not omit the English word hope when translating from Greek to English because it can give the wrong impression to people who are unlearned and untaught (as Peter referred to some in this passage 2 Peter 3:16).
We have not seen our Lord Jesus Christ but yet we love Him because He first loved us and gave Himself for us (on the Cross) and at our birth (regeneration) He gave Himself to us and enabled us to love Him, even though we cannot see Him as did Peter, John, or Paul. In other words Paul is saying that we that are true sons and daughters of God the Father are delivered from our sin and depravity here and now even while we continue in a world filled with corruption and depravity. Paul is also saying that because we are delivered from our sin now and made God the Father’s children, then it is He that protects us and keeps us (by His Power) from continuing in sin and depravity and from satan’s minions and the people satan uses to work through to come against His children. Therefore, we are constant in our devotion, desires, and duty for our Lord Jesus’ Glory to be made visible in our lives even as we groan to be with Him right now. We are enabled by the Holy Spirit to endure all manner of hardship and spiritual attack keeping our eyes firmly fixed and focused on our Lord Jesus Christ and the glory we will share with Him soon.
2 Corinthians 4:18 “While we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” NKJV
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. NKJV
“Christians are adopted when they are converted Romans 8:15, but they have not been yet admitted to the full privileges of their adoption into the family of God. Their adoption when they are converted is secret, and may at the time be unknown to the world. The fullness of the adoption, their complete admission to the privileges of the sons of God, shall be in the day of judgment, in the presence of the universe, and amidst the glories of the final consummation of all things. This adoption is not different from the first, but is the completion of the act of grace when a sinner is received into the family of God.” Albert Barnes
“One thing I have noticed in studying the Word of God, and that is, when a man is filled with the Spirit he deals largely with the Word of God, whereas the man who is filled with his own Ideas refers rarely to the Word of God. He gets along without it, and you seldom see it mentioned in his discourses.” D. L. Moody
“The indwelling Spirit shall teach him what is of God and what is not. This is why sometimes we can conjure up no logical reason for opposing a certain teaching, yet in the very depth of our being arises a resistance.” Watchman Nee
“The old saying spawned by man “hope springs eternal” is wonderful and glorious only if your hope is founded in Jesus Christ and His Cross and Resurrection because the “hope” in Him is not wishful thinking, but a confident expectation of glory with Him eternally by way of glory begun when you were born again.” Clifford D. Tate, Sr.
If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...
Sincerely in Christ,
Clifford D. Tate, Sr.
Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…