|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
5:1-8 The believer not only is well assured by faith that there is another and a happy life after this is ended, but he has good hope, through grace, of heaven as a dwelling-place, a resting-place, a hiding-place. In our Father's house there are many mansions, whose Builder and Maker is God. The happiness of the future state is what God has prepared for those that love him: everlasting habitations, not like the earthly tabernacles, the poor cottages of clay, in which our souls now dwell; that are mouldering and decaying, whose foundations are in the dust. The body of flesh is a heavy burden, the calamities of life are a heavy load. But believers groan, being burdened with a body of sin, and because of the many corruptions remaining and raging within them. Death will strip us of the clothing of flesh, and all the comforts of life, as well as end all our troubles here below. But believing souls shall be clothed with garments of praise, with robes of righteousness and glory. The present graces and comforts of the Spirit are earnests of everlasting grace and comfort. And though God is with us here, by his Spirit, and in his ordinances, yet we are not with him as we hope to be. Faith is for this world, and sight is for the other world. It is our duty, and it will be our interest, to walk by faith, till we live by sight. This shows clearly the happiness to be enjoyed by the souls of believers when absent from the body, and where Jesus makes known his glorious presence. We are related to the body and to the Lord; each claims a part in us. But how much more powerfully the Lord pleads for having the soul of the believer closely united with himself! Thou art one of the souls I have loved and chosen; one of those given to me. What is death, as an object of fear, compared with being absent from the Lord!
Verse 5. - He who hath wrought us for the selfsame thing. God prepared and perfected us for this very result, namely, to put on the robe of immortality. The earnest (see 2 Corinthians 1:22) The quickening life imparted by the Spirit of life is a pledge and part payment of the incorruptible eternal life. The Spirit is "the Earnest of our inheritance" (Ephesians 1:14; Ephesians 4:30).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing,.... By "the selfsame thing" is meant, either the cross, the burden of sorrows and afflictions, under which the saints groan whilst here, which God has appointed them unto, and therefore to be bore patiently by them; or that glory and immortality, which they, as vessels of mercy, were prepared by him for from everlasting; for which their bodies and souls are formed by him in creation, and for which they are made meet in regeneration, by the curious workmanship of his Spirit and grace upon them: and seeing he "is God", and not man, who hath wrought them for this, either by his secret purposes and preparations of grace in eternity, or by his open works of creation and regeneration in time; there is no doubt but they shall certainly enjoy it, since his counsels are immutable, and he is a rock, and his work is perfect; whatever he begins he finishes, nor is he ever frustrated of his end: one of Stephens's copies adds, "and hath anointed us", which seems to have been transcribed from 2 Corinthians 1:21.
Who also hath given us the earnest of the Spirit; and therefore may be assured of possessing the inheritance, of which he is the earnest; see 2 Corinthians 1:22.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
5. wrought us—framed us by redemption, justification, and sanctification.
for the selfsame thing—"unto" it; namely, unto what is mortal of us being swallowed up in life (2Co 5:4).
who also—The oldest manuscripts omit "also."
earnest of the Spirit—(See on 2Co 1:22). It is the Spirit (as "the first-fruits") who creates in us the groaning desire for our coming deliverance and glory (Ro 8:23).
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