2 Corinthians 5
Living by Faith, Not by Sight
5:1 For we know that if our earthly house, the tent we live in,1 is dismantled,2 we have a building from God, a house not built by human hands, that is eternal in the heavens. 5:2 For in this earthly house3 we groan, because we desire to put on4 our heavenly dwelling, 5:3 if indeed, after we have put on5 our heavenly house,6 we will not be found naked. 5:4 For we groan while we are in this tent,7 since we are weighed down,8 because we do not want to be unclothed, but clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. 5:5 Now the one who prepared us for this very purpose9 is God, who gave us the Spirit as a down payment.10 5:6 Therefore we are always full of courage, and we know that as long as we are alive here on earth11 we are absent from the Lord – 5:7 for we live12 by faith, not by sight. 5:8 Thus we are full of courage and would prefer to be away13 from the body and at home with the Lord. 5:9 So then whether we are alive14 or away, we make it our ambition to please him.15 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ,16 so that each one may be paid back according to what he has done while in the body, whether good or evil.17
The Message of Reconciliation
5:11 Therefore, because we know the fear of the Lord,18 we try to persuade19 people,20 but we are well known21 to God, and I hope we are well known to your consciences too. 5:12 We are not trying to commend22 ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to be proud of us,23 so that you may be able to answer those who take pride24 in outward appearance25 and not in what is in the heart. 5:13 For if we are out of our minds, it is for God; if we are of sound mind, it is for you. 5:14 For the love of Christ26 controls us, since we have concluded this, that Christ27 died for all; therefore all have died. 5:15 And he died for all so that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised.28 5:16 So then from now on we acknowledge29 no one from an outward human point of view.30 Even though we have known Christ from such a human point of view,31 now we do not know him in that way any longer. 5:17 So then, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; what is old has passed away32 – look, what is new33 has come!34 5:18 And all these things are from God who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and who has given us the ministry of reconciliation. 5:19 In other words, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting people’s trespasses against them, and he has given us35 the message of reconciliation. 5:20 Therefore we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making His plea36 through us. We plead with you37 on Christ’s behalf, “Be reconciled to God!” 5:21 God38 made the one who did not know sin39 to be sin for us, so that in him40 we would become the righteousness of God.