2 Corinthians 5

God has prepared a new body for us

1 Our body that we live in here on earth is like a tent. It is like a tent that God will tear down one day. But we have a building that God has made for us to live in. No human person made that house. It will always be there, in heaven. We know that. 2 Now, while we are in our body here, we cry with pain. We want to put our house from heaven over us, like someone puts on new clothes. We want that very much. 3 We want to put on that new house, and then we will never be like people without clothes. 4 While we still live in our body here on earth, as in a tent, we cry inside ourselves. We do not really want to take off our old body. But instead, we want to put our new body over us, like new clothes. So then our new body, that will live always, will completely take the place of our old body. It will take the place of our old body, which had to die. 5 God is the one who has prepared us for this change. He has prepared us because he has given his Spirit to us. And his Spirit causes us to know that this change will certainly happen.

6 So, we are happy and brave because we are always sure. While we are at home in this body, we are away from the Lord. We know that. 7 We know it because we believe God. We believe him, and so we obey him. We do not live by the things that we can see. 8 I say again that we are always sure. It would be better if we could leave our home in this body. That is what we think. So then, we could be at home with the Lord. 9 But, more than anything else, we want to make God happy. We want to do that, whether we are at home in our body here or away from it. 10 Because all of us must stand in front of Christ when he decides about us. He will decide about the things that we have done during our lives. So then, each person will receive from God as a result of the things that they have done. What each person has done while they lived in the body here may be either good or bad. And each person will receive from God what they ought to have as a result of those things.

God makes us new people in Christ

11 We know what it means to be afraid of the Lord. And so, because of this, we try to tell other people, so that they turn to him. But God himself knows what we really are. And I hope that, deep inside yourselves, you know us clearly also. 12 We are not trying again to make you think great things about us. No, but instead we want to give you the chance to show that you are happy about us. So then you will be able to answer those people who look at the outside of a person. To those people, the important thing is what somebody is like on the outside. But they do not think about what a person is like on the inside. 13 If we seem crazy, that is because we are God's. Or, if we are serious, and not crazy, that is to help you.

14 We want to obey only Christ, because he loves us so very much. And we are completely sure that one man died on behalf of all people. This means that all people died with him. 15 He died on behalf of all people, so that they should not live for themselves any more. But instead, all those people who live should live for him. They should live for him, who died on their behalf. He died and then he rose, to live again.

16 So, from now on, we do not know anyone only because they are human like us. We have even known Christ as a human person, but we do not know him like that any more. 17 When anyone is united with Christ, they become a new person. God makes them new. Old things have gone. See, they have become new! 18 All this is the work of God, who, because of Christ, has stopped being angry with us. By Christ, we have become God's friends instead of his enemies. And he wants us to bring other people to be his friends also. This is the job that he has given to us. 19 God wants us to tell people that, by Christ, he was bringing the world to himself. He was bringing all people in the world back to himself, to be his friends. God was not continuing to remember all the wrong things that people do. This is the message that God has given to us. He wants us to tell people that he has brought them back to himself.

20 So, we are speaking on behalf of Christ. It is quite as if God himself is asking you strongly by us. On behalf of Christ, we are asking you very strongly to become God's friends. 21 Christ never thought or did any wrong things. But God punished Christ as if, like us, he was wrong. God punished him on our behalf. So then, as a result, we become right with God when we are united with Christ.