The Resurrection of 1 Corinthians 15 – Article #9 by Holger Neubauer

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What is the nature of the resurrection in 1 Corinthians 15?

The Resurrection of 1 Corinthians 15- #9

1 Corinthians 15:44,45 identifies for us again the body under consideration, “It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. And so it written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.” The natural body, represented in Adam was made a “living soul.” The natural body was the soul or spiritual body that died when it sinned. God said to Adam, “for in the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die” (Genesis 2:17).

Adam did not die physically for 930 years (Genesis 5:3). The death that Adam died was spiritual in nature. As Paul affirmed, “so death passed on all men, for that all have sinned” (Romans 5:12). The last Adam was made a “quickening spirit.” Christ died in the spirit in order to be made alive in the Spirit. 2 Corinthians 5:14 says, “because thus we judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead.”

How were all dead at the time Paul wrote? Not physically, but spiritually, because all sinned as Adam had done. Therefore, Christ must have died spiritually in order to pay the price for sin. This again proves that Jesus died spiritually. See Don K. Preston’s book, We Shall Meet Him In The Air, The Wedding of the King of kings, for an extended discussion of Christ’s death and resurrection as it relates to the resurrection of 1 Corinthians 15.

The Wedding of the King of Kings
This book contains an in-depth study of the nature of the resurrection.

Jesus was made a “quickening spirit” because the spirit came alive. When Jesus said, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me” He was affirming the truth that He had died in spirit (Matthew 27:46). This is the only prayer that Jesus addressed to the Father that he used the title God. Jesus was giving up his relationship with His Father so that all of us could become sons.

1 Corinthians 15:46-47 speaks to the point of transitioning from the earthly to the heavenly, “Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.” It was God’s plan to transition the earthly man to the spiritual man. Adam was a natural man as was the “natural man” of 1Corinthians 2:14. The “natural” unaided man could not discern the truth without the Spirit that provided the revelation to know the spiritual direction he should take, and the natural man which possessed his natural body could not find forgiveness without a spiritual body.

The second man is the “Lord from heaven” as the “body is of Christ” (Colossians 2:17). Paul continued, “and as is the heavenly, such are they that are heavenly ( 1 Corinthians 15:48).” The “they” refers to those who were becoming “heavenly” during the transition period as the church was stripping off its layers of Judaism (Acts 21:20; Hebrews 8:13). Paul would say, “And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 2:6). This is another instance of the “already, but not yet of scripture.” Salvation and grace were things the church possessed in promise (Ephesians 2:8,9), but Salvation and grace were in their future as well (1 Peter 1:5,9,13). The same was true for the redemption of the body (Ephesians 4:30). The Ephesians were redeemed (Ephesians 1:7) but the Holy Spirit was the “earnest” or down payment “until the redemption for the purchased possession” (Ephesians 1:14).

The “purchased possession” is nothing other than the church which was purchased by the blood of Christ (Acts 20:28). The physical body does not need redemption because fingernails and toes were never lost. It is the spiritual body of which Christians were a part of that needed redemption. The whole “creation” which refers to those in Christ were anxiously awaiting for their redemption (Romans 8:23).

More to come on the resurrection, so stay tuned!