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|1 Cor. 15:35-49 - The Resurrection Body|
|News - Sermons|
|Written by Tim Black|
|Sunday, 12 April 2009 02:00|
1) human bodies in the estate of the fall, and in the estate of salvation, prior to glorification, and 2) human bodies in the estate of glory.
I am assuming here the WCF's framework of the fourfold estate of man: man in the four estates of creation, fall, salvation, and glory. The contrast is between two sets of qualities, which we will summarize as "corruption" and "incorruption," since Paul summarizes them using those terms in 15:53. This emphasizes a fundamental DISCONTINUITY between the pre- and post-resurrection states.
1) human bodies in the estate of creation, leading to
Here Paul indicates a contrast between these two stages, but also a CONTINUITY from the first stage into the second stage. This continuity can be seen in two clear ways.
There is BOTH continuity and discontinuity between the pre- and post-resurrection states, between the estate of salvation, and the estate of glory.
Therefore our faith is not in vain, God's grace is not in vain, and our labor is not in vain, for in fact Christ has risen from the dead, the dead are raised, and we are no longer in our sins. Neither sin nor death will triumph over us in our bodies, but thanks be to God(!), for He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Have you carefully considered 1 Cor. 15:53? Does it not teach a fundamental, bodily continuity between our pre- and post-resurrection bodies? If our self-same bodies are not raised, then is not our faith in vain? Does it not also teach that our body will be raised with radically new qualities, which we ought to desire and seek with all our might? Because it teaches these things, Paul concludes with a final exhortation calculated to protect you from both apathy and immorality—"Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain."
Armed with the encouragements of this passage, how do you answer the difficult questions about your resurrection body? "Will I still be me? In my body, with my personality, my memories? Will I still be able to recognize my friends and family? What will my new body be like? How old will I look? Will I still bear the scars of my sins and suffering from this life?" And in our pain we ask a different sort of question, "When will my suffering end?" We don't have every answer, but we have the solid assurance that we will have the self-same body, made new, imperishable, in glory, power, and eternal life. Give praise to the Lord for the resurrection body that will be yours through the resurrection of Jesus Christ!
1Please forgive my Aristotelian-sounding act-potency language; I'm using it because it is warranted by the grammar and syntax of the passage, and because it is used by the WCF to speak about this same issue.
|Last Updated on Sunday, 19 April 2009 16:09|