LIFE FOR ALL
Thank You, Jesus, for new life.
Read 1 Corinthians 15:12–34
The Resurrection of the Dead
12 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.
20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. 23 But each in turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him. 24 Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. 25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. 26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death. 27 For he “has put everything under his feet.” Now when it says that “everything” has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ. 28 When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all.
29 Now if there is no resurrection, what will those do who are baptized for the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why are people baptized for them? 30 And as for us, why do we endanger ourselves every hour? 31 I face death every day—yes, just as surely as I boast about you in Christ Jesus our Lord. 32 If I fought wild beasts in Ephesus with no more than human hopes, what have I gained? If the dead are not raised,
“Let us eat and drink,
for tomorrow we die.”
33 Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.” 34 Come back to your senses as you ought, and stop sinning; for there are some who are ignorant of God—I say this to your shame.
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectRemember that God has met you in Jesus, crucified and risen again. Prepare to hear from him.
Now we see why Paul has been so keen to demonstrate beyond any doubt that Jesus rose from the dead. It is because resurrection is so central to our faith. The Christian hope is that those who believe in Jesus will one day be raised to new life with him, and some in Corinth were denying it. They just didn’t accept that people could be raised from the dead. Well, says Paul, if that’s the case then Jesus wasn’t raised, everything we preached was false, and faith is a waste of time. Jesus was raised and that is the guarantee that we too shall be raised. We have a great future to look forward to!
If death is the end, what’s the point? Life is just a mess and nothing will change. But death isn’t the end. One day, when Jesus comes back, everything will be put right and God will reign supreme. When life looks bleak, that hope can give us strength.
Knowing that we will be raised affects the way we live right now. If death is the end, who cares? Let’s live as we want, then, and make the most of the present (32–34). But—because death isn’t the end—we live as people who are waiting for Jesus and want to please him.
How will knowing that you will be raised with Jesus affect the way that you live today? How will your priorities change?
Father, help me to keep my eyes fixed on You—to remember that life on this earth is but a tiny dot in comparison to the life I will live for eternity.