Truth in Palmyra

By Wally Fry


Devotions on 1 corinthians

The Resurrection Changed Everything

1 corinthians 15.17.JPG

1 Corinthians 15:16-23

We have talked at some length about the Resurrection as an encouragement to believers, and it surely is; however, it is far more than just that.

Joseph Smith founded the Mormon Church. Buddha founded Buddhism. Charles Taze Russell founded the Jehovah’s Witnesses. The prophet Mohammed founded Islam.  Other than founding a religion, what do all of those have in common? They are all dead. In fact, they all died just like normal people die, from normal things which cause human death. They died normal deaths, and have stayed quite dead. There are a couple of things of additional note. None of these claimed to have died for their followers, and their follower do not claim this. None of these made any claims that they would come back to life, and their followers do not claim that they did.

Friends, only Jesus claimed that His express purpose was to die for those who follow Him. Only Jesus claimed he would overcome that death and rise again to life. Furthermore, Christians are the only people who claim that their savior actually did all of these things.

The equation here is astoundingly simply, and Paul summed it up well in our verse today. If Christ is not raised, our faith is useless; in fact it is nonexistent. If Christ stayed dead, then when we die we will as well. In fact, if Jesus stayed dead, then we are already dead in our sins and will stay that way.

We Shall All Be Changed

1 cortinthians 15.55

1 Corinthians 15:51-58

The short answer to the above question is: For the believer death has no pain to offer us, and the grave will never have victory over us. The death rate in this life is 100%. All who live will ultimately die, in the sense that our physical lives will end someday. Death in itself is often painful, and it seems very final. Death divides families and leaves the remaining living in despondence. For many, death represents the end of existence.

Believers certainly are not exempt from the death which will finally claim us all. Back in the Garden of Eden, the actions of Adam and Eve brought sin to creation, and death along with it. When Jesus died on that cross He paid the penalty for all of the sin of humankind; when He rose from that grave, he defeated sin and death both; however, there is a caveat to this. For those who reject what Jesus did, our sin and the resulting death will claim us forever. Even though Jesus has attained victory over both, those who reject will not participate in the victory, and sin and death will win. Is anything sadder than that?

For those who believe, however, physical death does not mark the end! Sin and death, and those who die in them will be cast into the lake of fire. Those who believe will “in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye,” be raised and changed forever. Is anything more joyous than that?

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