Vincent Word Studies - 2 Corinthians 5:1 - 5:1

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Vincent Word Studies - 2 Corinthians 5:1 - 5:1


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This Chapter Verse Commentaries:

Our earthly house of this tabernacle (ἡ ἐπίγειος ἡμῶν οἰκία τοῦ σκήνους)

Earthly, not, made of earth, which would be χοΐ́κός as 1Co 15:47; but upon the earth, terrestrial, as 1Co 15:40; Phi 2:10. Tabernacle (σκῆνος) tent or hut. In later writers, especially the Platonists, Pythagoreans, and medical authors, used to denote the body. Thus Hippocrates: “A great vein by which the whole body (σκῆνος) is nourished.” Some expositors think that Paul uses the word here simply in this sense - the house which is the body. But while Paul does mean the body, he preserves the figurative sense of the word tabernacle; for he never uses this term elsewhere as synonymous with the body. The figure of the tent suits the contrast with the building, and would naturally suggest itself to the tent-maker. The phrase earthly house of the tabernacle expresses a single conception - the dwelling which is, or consists in the tabernacle, the tent-house. The transient character of the body is thus indicated. Compare houses of clay, Job 4:19. See on the kindred words σκήνωμα tabernacle, 2Pe 1:13; and σκηνόω to dwell in or to fix a tabernacle, Joh 1:14. Tabernacle is so habitually associated with a house of worship, and is so often applied to durable structures, that the original sense of a tent is in danger of being lost. It would be better to translate here by tent. The word tabernacle is a diminutive of the Latin taberna a hut or shed, which appears in tavern. Its root is ta, tan, to stretch or spread out.

Dissolved (καταλυθῇ)

Lit., loosened down. Appropriate to taking down a tent. See on Mar 13:2; see on Luk 9:12; see on Act 5:38; and compare 2Pe 3:11, 2Pe 3:12, and the figure of the parting of the silver cord on which the lamp is suspended, Ecc 12:6. Also Job 4:21, where the correct rendering is: Is not their tent-cord plucked up within them? So Rev. O.T.

We have

The building from God is an actual possession in virtue of the believer's union with Christ. It is just as we say of a minor, before he comes into possession of his property, that he has so much. Compare Mat 19:21.

Building of God (οἰκοδομὴν ἐκ Θεοῦ)

In contrast with tent. The reference is to the resurrection body. Compare the city which hath the foundations, Heb 11:10. For of God, read, as Rev., from, God; proceeding from (ἐκ) Heinrici, von Gott her: compare God giveth, 1Co 15:38, and ἔχετε ἀπὸ Θεοῦ ye have from God, where the reference is to the natural body, 1Co 6:19. Construe from God with building, not with we have.

In the heavens

Construe with we have.