The Apostle is writing to the New Creation – not the natural man. He recognizes the new will as the New Creature, and the old body as its tent. Our natural bodies are much better than none, but still quite unsatisfactory. The New Creature cannot feel perfectly at home in it, but earnestly longs for the perfect body to be his in the resurrection. [Our permanent home is the “mansion” our Lord promised to us (John 14:2).] 2 Corinthians 5:1 (NIV), “For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands.”
In this present, temporary body, we groan – oppressed not only by the evil world and the devil, but especially by our fleshly weaknesses. (See Romans 7:14-24.) For when we would do good, evil is present with us. So the good we would do, we are often hindered from doing. Instead we do the evil which we do not approve. As the Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 8:23, we “which have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the deliverance of our body (the Church)” – into the glorious likeness of our Lord.
We do not groan or wish to be without a body. We do not want to have the present life extinguished, but to have it swallowed up, absorbed into the perfect conditions of the perfect life to which we are begotten. We long for resurrection birth with its perfect body.
“Now the one who has fashioned us for this very purpose is God, who has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.” This perfect, resurrection condition will be the grand consummation of our salvation. The new mind, the new will begotten by the Word of truth, will be perfected in the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4). The holy Spirit is a prepayment of our resurrection.
“Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body [so long as we feel entirely contented with present conditions – ourselves and our surroundings], we are away from the Lord. If we were living near to him, we feel like pilgrims and strangers, seeking a better rest and home – “which God hath in reservation for them that love him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9.) This is true only of those who walk by faith and not by sight.
2 Corinthians 5:8-9 (NIV) “We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body (present conditions) or away from it.”