Seeker: “So we are always confident; even though we know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord— for we walk by faith, not by sight.”
Preacher: When we are in our bodies, that is, dwelling on earth, we cannot and do not see the Lord with our eyes, but sense the Lord through the Spirit and through our human spirit.
Seeker:“Yes, we do have confidence, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him.”
Preacher: Most Christian, or, many Christians, would rather be with the Lord, dwelling in the physical and spacial presence of the Lord. But that is not possible in this world, but is reserved for the world to come. But the Lord is near us in this world, so we strive to live as the Lord would have us live.
Seeker: “For all of us must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each may receive recompense for what has been done in the body, whether good or evil.” (II Corinthians 5:6-10)
Preacher: We know that some day this world, or our human presence in this world, will come to an end. And we will be made accountable for how we lived.
[Beloved reader, the RCL does not specifically include verses 11 to 13, but notes that they are part of the passage. The writer of II Corinthians continues his theological dissertation on the theme of living for and in consequence of the Lord God’s expectations. Preacher and Seeker continue with verse 14. Verses 11 to 13 are: “Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we try to persuade others; but we ourselves are well known to God, and I hope that we are also well known to your consciences. We are not commending ourselves to you again, but giving you an opportunity to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast in outward appearance and not in the heart. For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you”.]
Seeker: “For the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died.”
Preacher: The “One” who died is Christ; we all have “died” with Christ only so that we may be reborn. It is our sins and our sinful human nature that has died, or has gone away. In its place is a reborn spirit that finds its direction and guidance from and in Christ and our Lord God.
Seeker: “And he died for all, so that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died and was raised for them.”
Preacher: Christ died for us. We will live for him, and relate to all humanity and creation as Christ did when Jesus walked the earth.
Seeker: “From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way.”
Preacher: Old ways are gone. We live and think of our fellow human being in a new way, in a Christ-like way.
Seeker: “So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!”
Preacher: May you, beloved listener (and beloved reader) live in a new way, as Christ guides and directs you. Selah!