Cure For What Ails
Why It’s Critical
1 Corinthians 15:12-34
In chapter 15 Paul writes detailed instructions regarding the doctrine of resurrection. After reminding the Corinthian church that the resurrection of Jesus is foundational to the Gospel message, he considers the claim made by some that bodily resurrection was impossible. The Greek philosophy of Paul’s day espoused immortality of the soul but not resurrection of the body. To them, the body was the source of man’s weakness, so death liberated the soul from the body- resurrection would only enslave the soul again. In verses 12-19 Paul presses this idea to its logical consequence within the framework of the Christian faith.
What if there is no such thing as resurrection of the dead?
- not even Jesus has been raised (15:13)
- preaching the Gospel is futile (15:14)
- faith in Jesus is empty and aimless (15:14, 15:17)
- we are lying about God and what he can do (15:15)
- we are still alienated from God by our sin (15:17)
- this is also true for those who died believing in Jesus (15:18)
- we should be pitied for believing such foolishness (15:19)
But Jesus has been raised from the dead (see the list of witnesses in 15:5-8). Paul refers to Jesus’ resurrection as first fruits, or the prototype of future resurrections. Because Jesus has been raised from the dead, there exists the guarantee that his followers will also one day be resurrected. The significance of this event in the life of the believer cannot be overstated- it is the anchor to our faith and the hope for our future!
Jesus died for our sins and was buried
He rose from the dead and was seen
- Have you ever taken time to consider what it means to believe in Jesus’ resurrection? Why do you trust in this event?
- How can we present and discuss Jesus’ resurrection as the event that sparked Christianity to a world that is skeptical of religion and often shuns the supernatural?