Tuesday, 7 April 2015
It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. 1 Corinthians 15:44
Paul continues with his explanation of the resurrection body. Still referring to the example of a seed he says that, “It is sown a natural body.” Seeds are sown; the corrupt and weak bodies of the dead are buried. This is its natural state and this is what is placed into the ground. Just like all of the animals of the earth, they live a certain amount of time, they age, and then they die and return to the soil from which they came. However, for the believer in Christ, the body that was sown will have a marvelous change. Paul says that, “it is raised a spiritual body.”
It has to be noted that it doesn’t say a “spirit body.” This would be contradictory to a literal, bodily resurrection. The body which is raised is “spiritual” not “spirit.” Misunderstanding this, or purposefully changing the intent and meaning (as for example the Jehovah’s Witnesses do), leads to heresy. Christ was raised with a literal, physical body. He made this abundantly clear when He ate among the apostles and even asked them to touch Him. He was showing that His body, in fact, was literal and physical. As we will be like Him in nature (not deity, but body) we will also have a literal, physical body.
To ensure his words are perfectly comprehended, he repeats the thought saying, “There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.” In an emphatic way, Paul is showing here that there are two bodies for the believer. We have one like a seed which dies, and yet there is another which sprouts from that decay to be like a plant. It is different in form and yet it has all the same life of the original. Our spiritual body will not rely on the natural order that we now know for its continuance. Rather we will derive our continuance from our spiritual reconnection to God through the power of the resurrection.
Life application: What God has promised He is fully capable of fulfilling. Know and understand that we will have a literal body and it will never wear out. It will be spiritual, not natural, in nature.
O God! I am so thankful that eternity will be spent in a way that I cannot even comprehend now. At this time I get so tired, I get worn out, and I get frustrated with the events around me. Sometimes I get sick or injured too. And this happens to those around me that I love as well. We trudge through life, we get old, and then we die. But You have promised a new order of things which will sustain us for all eternity. I simply can’t wait for what You have in store for Your people. Thank You, O God, for the hope I have because of my Lord Jesus! Amen.