We groan (Rom 8:23)

“Not only the creation,

But we ourselves,

Having the first fruits

Of the Spirit,

Groan inwardly

Within ourselves,

While we wait

For adoption,

The redemption

Of our bodies.”

οὐ μόνον δέ, ἀλλὰ καὶ αὐτοὶ τὴν ἀπαρχὴν τοῦ Πνεύματος ἔχοντες ἡμεῖς καὶ αὐτοὶ ἐν ἑαυτοῖς στενάζομεν, υἱοθεσίαν ἀπεκδεχόμενοι, τὴν ἀπολύτρωσιν τοῦ σώματος ἡμῶν.

Paul said that not only the creation (οὐ μόνον δέ), but we ourselves (ἀλλὰ καὶ αὐτοὶ), having (ἔχοντες) the first fruits (τὴν ἀπαρχὴν) of the Spirit (τοῦ Πνεύματος), groan inwardly within ourselves (ἡμεῖς καὶ αὐτοὶ ἐν ἑαυτοῖς στενάζομεν) while we wait (ἀπεκδεχόμενοι) for the adoption (υἱοθεσίαν), the redemption or deliverance (ἀπολύτρωσιν) of our bodies (τοῦ σώματος ἡμῶν).  Only the Pauline letters used this word υἱοθεσίαν, that means adoption or a becoming a son into the divine family.  However, Paul brought it back to his audience in Rome.  It was not just creation that was waiting for a redeemer.  We within ourselves, the first fruits of the Holy Spirit, groan and await our adoption as the sons of God.  We expect the redemption of our bodies.  Thus, Paul concluded his ecological anthropomorphism of creation by turning back to his readers who also wanted the redemption of their bodies.  We, who are the first fruits of the Holy Spirit, are to be saved with the world around us, but there was a groaning or expectation of this to happen soon.  Do you expect the created world to be saved?

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