Sunday, October 21, 2013
“Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:1,2 KJV).
Although a stumbling block to many, today’s Scripture is not difficult to understand when we consider the context….
If we fail to keep foremost in our minds Jesus Christ’s literal, physical, visible resurrection (like the Corinthians in today’s Scripture), then we will not be saved from despair and misery (verses 12,14,17,19). If He did not resurrect, then we have no hope of seeing our deceased Christian loved ones (verse 18). All of our ministry work such as preaching and teaching would be for nothing and our believing would also be pointless (verses 14,17). In short, without the reality of bodily resurrection, our Christian service would be a waste of time!
“If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable” (verse 19). However, by constantly reminding ourselves of the reality of Jesus Christ’s bodily resurrection, we are saved from all that misery listed above. We do not simply have “hope in Christ” now in this present life, but we have “hope in Christ” after death because we will be bodily resurrected just like Jesus Christ was (verses 20-23,35-58). This mentality saves us from the despair that results from denying bodily resurrection.
Verse 58, the concluding verse of the Apostle Paul’s exhaustive resurrection chapter, summarizes: “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.” Our Christian service—that is, Jesus Christ living His life in and through us—is not in vain, for we will be resurrected bodily to receive a reward, enabling us to function in the heavenly places forever for God’s glory (1 Corinthians 3:9-15; 2 Corinthians 5:9,10; Ephesians 2:6,7; Colossians 3:23-25).
May we always keep Jesus Christ’s bodily resurrection in mind, thereby remembering we too will be resurrected, so our Christian service is not in vain in the Lord! 🙂