“And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.” —Romans 8:23-25
Not only does the creation groan (Romans 8:19-22), but we also groan and sigh within ourselves when, through the process of sanctification, we walk after the Spirit; and as we surrender to Him, we receive increasing revelations from the Holy Spirit that the true worshippers of God must worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for He seeks such to worship Him (John 4:23-24). And although we grow in grace and are strengthened in faith as God purifies us and sanctifies us through experience, we realize more and more that we still have these bodies of mortal flesh; and that the very best of our worship must be repented of because it is stained with sin. In the presence of His holiness, because we are adopted sons and daughters in Christ, we have access to the Holiest of all; yet, that glimpse causes us to see even more of our fallen flesh, more of our corruptions, and therefore, we groan, as it were, like Isaiah did when He saw the Lord high and lifted up: “Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts” (Isaiah 6:5).
Yet, accompanying the revelation of my weakness, my imperfections, and my infirmities, God’s abounding grace shines upon me with that absolute certain hope of glory: a hope that tells us that a day is coming when I may worship the Father in perfect spirit and in glorious, glorified truth, unhindered, unhampered, and unrestrained by mortal corruption. For “in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” (Psalm 16:11).
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Read the previous article in this series, “Creation Groans“ (Romans 8:19-22).