On Sunday we finished our 3-week journey through 1 Corinthians chapter 15 as we looked at 15.35-58. In these verses Paul gives us some insight into the nature of our resurrected bodies. We often have many questions about what our bodies will be like when they are raised on the Last Day. As we looked at this text we asked, and answered, 5 questions about the nature of our resurrection bodies.
1. How will our resurrection bodies compare with our current bodies? In vv. 36-44a Paul uses some analogies in the natural world to help us gain some understanding of our future resurrection bodies. He tells us that our future resurrection will be like a seed planted in the ground. Our resurrected bodies will be very different. We need not worry about the nature of our resurrection bodies because, as Paul says, God is perfectly capable of creating bodies suited for their environments just as he has with humans, birds, fish, etc. In. vv 42-44 Paul contrasts our current bodies with our resurrection bodies in 4 key ways: 1) Our current bodies are perishable, but our resurrection bodies will be imperishable. 2) Our current bodies are dishonorable, but our resurrection bodies will be glorious. 3) Our current bodies are weak, but our resurrection bodies will be powerful. 4) Our current bodies are natural, but our resurrection bodies will be spiritual.
2. How will our resurrection bodies compare with Christ’s resurrection body? In vv. 44b-49 Paul tells us that our current bodies are made in the image of Adam and of dust, but our resurrection bodies will be made in the image of Christ’s resurrection body: heavenly. Jesus is the example of what our resurrection bodies will be like.
3. When can we expect our resurrection bodies? In vv. 51-53 Paul says that we will receive our resurrection bodies in an instant when Jesus returns.
4. Why do we need resurrection bodies? Paul gives us two reasons why our resurrection bodies are necessary: 1) Our current bodies are not suited for heaven. We need new bodies that are suited for the perfect and glorious reality of the New Heaven and the New Earth. 2) Victory over death is necessary. Paul tells us that God’s victory over death is not complete until we receive our resurrection bodies.
5. How should our future resurrection bodies impact us today? In vv. 57-58 Paul says the hope of our resurrection bodies should produce worship and steadfast obedience. Our future resurrection reminds us that what we do here and now is not in vain as we obey the Lord. This is because our bodily resurrection is just the final phase of the process of our becoming more like Christ. Even now we experience the power of the resurrection as the Holy Spirit makes us more like Jesus. This will be completed when Jesus returns and even our bodies become like His.
May the glorious truth of our bodily resurrection be used by God as a source of strength and hope as we persevere in the faith for God’s glory. If you want the discussion questions based on Sunday’s sermon and the order of service, here are the notes: 1 Cor. 15.35-58 Notes.
-Pastor Nathan Hogan