I Cor 15 Is Establishing The Resurrection Of Our Human Bodies

I heard my friend John Gibson preach a great sermon today which proved absurd the 70Aders position that I Corinthians 15 is not talking about the literal resurrection of our individual human bodies from the grave. As we will see, it is easy to determine from the context that it most certainly is.

The chapter begins in verse 4 and following by talking about the resurrection of Jesus’ body. Surely no one would deny Jesus’ resurrection was of his literal human body, especially in light of what Jesus said after his resurrection in Luke 24:39 “Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.”

Back to I Cor 15 – Paul then asks in verse 12 “Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?” This shows conclusively that the resurrection Paul is trying to establish in the chapter is the resurrection of our individual body because he suggests that if one claims this type of resurrection does not exist, then Jesus’ resurrection did not happen. This argument only makes sense if the resurrection under consideration is the same type of resurrection as the resurrection of Jesus – a bodily resurrection.

Paul makes the same point, this time in reverse, in verse 13 “But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen.” How can that argument follow unless the resurrection Paul is contending for is a literal bodily resurrection as Jesus’ was?

Again in verse 16 “For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised.” If Paul was only talking about a figurative resurrection (having nothing to do with the human body) in AD 70, then how would its non existence prove Christ’s bodily resurrection non existent?

Next notice verse 20 “But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.” The first fruits of something means more of the same is to follow. In this case, since Jesus’ individual human body was raised from the dead, then the more to follow would have to be the resurrection of our individual human bodies.

The 70ADers position that these verses are just talking about the church springing to life when the old Jewish system was destroyed in AD 70 makes no sense at all in light of passages like Acts 24:15 that teach both the “just and unjust” will be resurrected. If only the church (the faithful) are under consideration, then how does that fit the fact that the unjust will also be raised? But if we are talking about a resurrection of our human bodies, then the unjust being included makes perfectly good sense – they will be resurrected unto condemnation (John 5:29).

Christians should learn a lesson from this absurd position: Let passages mean what they say instead of trying to “spiritualize” everything.

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