Resurrection Explained

“Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.

“But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ. Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For ‘God has put all things in subjection under his feet.’ But when it says, ‘all things are put in subjection,’ it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him. When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all.” 1 Corinthians 15:12-28.

Paul’s teaching centers around the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and why they matter. There are no political diatribes, no railing against social injustice. All these will be settled in the final judgment, and any temporal amelioration is gained through forgiving one another because Christ died for us all. So the significance of the resurrection is that it demonstrates that death itself is not final, and that it will be eventually defeated.

For me, the resurrection and eternity put all of life’s disappointments and sufferings in perspective. A thousand years from now, those things will not even be a memory. Every foolish thing I’ve seen or heard about on the internet will have passed away. I cannot wait for the new heavens and the new earth. And for all this to come to pass, what is present must pass away.

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