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Resurrection For All Those Who Are In Christ

1 Corinthians 15:20-23
But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. But each in turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him. (NIVUK)

In the preceding verses (1 Corinthians 15:12-19), Paul gave seven reasons why the resurrection is pivotal for the Christian faith. If the resurrection of Jesus Christ did not happen, there would be no reason to believe in Him; His death would have been a futile gesture which could never save sinners: indeed such faith would be foolish. So Paul now asserts, "But Christ has indeed been risen from the dead." Indeed, the evidence for the resurrection is overwhelming (you can find a helpful summary by clicking here).
 
But God's plan does not stop at raising His Son. The miracle of Christ's resurrection was the first demonstration that the curse of death is paid for and the power of Satan has been thwarted. God credits righteousness to all who believe that Jesus died for their sins and was raised again. Romans 4:23-25 says, "… God will credit righteousness – for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification." The resurrection proves that Christ's sacrifice for sin was accepted and that new life in a new body is God's intention for all who trust in Jesus.
 
We all 'belong to Adam'. As human beings we inherit part of his gene pool and his sinful nature. Like Adam the curse of death, as a consequence of our sin, hangs over us. But all who belong to Christ will also share in His life now and in His resurrection when He returns. We inherit His eternity which can never perish, spoil or fade (1 Peter 1:3-5). We are promised new bodies with eternal properties; that promise is not a religious dream but backed by historical evidence.
 
Although we are very protective over our bodies and our health, we need to understand that the curse of death is upon us all. Every miracle of physical healing now is a tiny echo of God's life-giving power, and all who are healed will die one day. Therefore we need to put our hope in the future resurrection of everybody who belongs to Christ Jesus (1 Peter 1:21). The promise has already been validated and will be fulfilled when He returns. What a great encouragement to keep on trusting Jesus! It is also a spur to our evangelism, because those who do not belong to Him are not justified from their sin and will suffer its curse for eternity (Matthew 25:46).
 

Prayer 
Dear Lord. Thank You that the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ is wonderful evidence that I will also be raised with a new eternal body when He comes again. Forgive me for focussing so much on the activities and worries of each day that I forget the very bright future You have promised to all who belong to Jesus. Please help me to be sustained in my faith by that prospect, and to share the good news with those I know so that they may also come to Christ and share in the eternal inheritance of all those who are justified. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
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© Dr Paul Adams

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