The Resurrection of Jesus Christ

I Cor. 15


Verse 1  Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;

I.    If you have ever wondered what the gospel is, it is explained right here in these verses.


II.   Verse 3 and 4 is the gospel.


Verse 2  By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.



Verse 3  For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;

I.    Point # 1 in the gospel is that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures.


II.   What does "according to the scriptures" mean?

A.  It means Christ fulfilled all the prophecies concerning his death that was given in the Old Testament.

1.   All the circumstances about his death was dictated in the Old Testament.

B.   There are no prophecies given about other peoples death.

1.   There is prophecy about the death of Peter.

2.   There is no prophecy about my death, or your death.


Verse 4  And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

I.    The prophecy was that Christ would be buried in a rich man's tomb, and that is exactly what happened.

A.  Some might interpret this verse as meaning that Christ would grow rich during his lifetime, but that is a misinterpretation.

B.   Christ didn't grow rich, he just "borrowed" a rich man's tomb for three days and three nights.


II.   He arose again the third day according to the scripture.

A.  Nobody has ever risen from the dead who didn't have to die again.

1.   The people in the Bible who were raised from the dead all had to die again.

B.   Jesus Christ has come out of the grave.

C.   Every other god that people worship either has no life, or never had any life.

1.   There are those people who worship some part of nature, but those thing never had life.

2.   There are others who worship some man, but all of those men have died, and haven't raised from the dead.


Verse 5  And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:

I.    People saw Christ after he was risen from the dead.

A.  Lazarus was raised from the dead, and people saw him.

B.   Those Pharisees that saw him alive tried to kill him because he showed the glory of God.

C.   Nobody tried to kill Jesus after he was risen from the dead.


II.   Christ was seen of Cephas, Peter, then of the twelve.

A.  The twelve speaks of the apostles, although there were only 11 of them at this time.


Verse 6  After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.

I.    The five hundred brethren that saw Christ was at Galilee.

A.  Matt. 28 - speaks of this gathering.

B.   Most of these people were still alive when Paul wrote this book, but some of them had already died.

1.   At the time of this writing, you would go to these people and talk to them and find out from them that they had seen Jesus in Galilee.

2.   All of these people have now died, so we can't go to them.

3.   We have the Bible record.

4.   If we won't believe the Bible, we won't believe the 500 brethren.


Verse 7  After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.

I.    He was then seen of James, then again of all the apostles.


Verse 8  And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.

I.    Paul was the last one to see the risen Lord.

A.  He was on the road to Damascus when Jesus appeared to him.

B.   The story of Saul's conversion is found in Acts 9.


II.   Why is Paul writing to the church at Corinth about the resurrection.

A.  A church is a group of saved baptized believers who have coveted together to worship God.

B.   If they are already saved, and baptized, and joined together to worship together, why does Paul write to them about this subject.

C.   The answer is in verse 12.


Verse 9  For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.

I.    Verse 9-11 gives some personal information about Paul.


Verse 10  But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which [was bestowed] upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.

I.    The things Paul does is because of the grace of God.

A.  When Paul saw Jesus Christ in heaven, it changed his entire life.

B.   We can't see Christ in heaven with our eyes today, but we can see Him with the eye of faith.

C.   This vision will change our entire life.

D.  Many people who say they are saved continue in their sinfulness because they have never really seen Christ with the eye of faith.


Verse 11  Therefore whether [it were] I or they, so we preach, and so ye believed.



Verse 12. Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?

I.    These people had made a profession of faith in Christ as their personal saviour, but they are saying they don't believe in the resurrection!!  How can this be?

A.  What is the gospel?

1.   Verse 1-4 - The death, burial, and resurrection of Christ.

2.   There are those in this church that say they don't believe in the resurrection.

3.   Do they believe in the gospel?

4.   Are they saved?

5.   Verse 2 - By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless you have believed in vain."

a.   Paul doesn't know if they are saved or not.

b.   I can't tell if they are saved.

6.   There are some people that you just can't tell whether they are saved or not.


II.   There is a difference between not understanding what the scriptures teach, and not believing what the scriptures teach.

A.  Luke 24:1-11 - At first the apostles didn't believe the resurrection when the women told them.

1.   This doesn't mean they are lost.

2.   It means they don't understand the resurrection.

B.   Jesus didn't arise from the dead on Sunday morning, but on Saturday night, after being in the grave for three days and three nights.

1.   The women get to the sepulchre early in the morning.

2.   This doesn't mean that Jesus arose just shortly before the women got there.

3.   The women were wondering how to roll the stone away from the grave so they could anoint the body of Christ with the spices.

4.   They stone was already rolled away when they got there.

5.   Jesus didn't roll the stone away so he could get out.

6.   He got out while the stone was still there, passing through it.

7.   The stone was rolled away so the people could go into the grave, and see that the body of Christ wasn't there any more.

8.   Luke 24:5 - Two angels (men) stood before the women, and told them that Christ had risen from the dead.

a.   The angels preach the everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ.

b.   Saved people are supposed to take the gospel, but when saved people don't understand, angels help them to understand.

c.   There will be angels fly through the heavens during the tribulation, preaching the everlasting gospel.

9.   Luke 24:8 - They return to the eleven, but they don't believe.

a.   The apostles didn't believe because they didn't understand.

b.   It was a truth they simply couldn't grasp.

10.  Luke 24:12 - When Peter went to the tomb, and saw the grave clothes without Jesus being in them, he wondered at those things.

11.  Luke 24:13-35 - Jesus appeared to the two on the road to Emmaus, but he didn't reveal himself to them until the evening meal.

a.   They didn't believe, because they didn't understand.

b.   When they returned to Jerusalem, and told the eleven, Jesus appeared in their midst.

C.   This whole thing is a picture of who carries the truth to others.

1.   The angel started it all because humans didn't understand.

2.   The women took the message next.

3.   The apostles took the message next.

4.   When we really understand the message, we will want to tell others.

5.   When people don't declare the gospel to others, it is a sign they don't really understand the meaning of the gospel.


III. The people in I Corinthians are denying the truth of the resurrection.

A.  It is not that they don't understand.

B.   They are denying what they have been taught.

C.   They might not have been saved to start with - I Cor. 15:2.


IV. This passage shows us how far a people can go from the truth and still be called a church of God!


Verse 13  But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:

I.    Verse 13-19 is the result of not believing the resurrection of the dead.


II.   They are believing that Christ is not risen from the dead.


Verse 14  And if Christ be not risen, then [is] our preaching vain, and your faith [is] also vain.

I.    If Christ isn't risen from the dead, then is all our preaching vain, and our faith is vain.

These things are all lies, and total emptiness and vanity.


Verse 15  Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.

I.    We are found liars before God, lying before men, giving them false hope.


II.   All preachers who preach a resurrected Christ is a liar.


Verse 16  For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised:



Verse 17  And if Christ be not raised, your faith [is] vain; ye are yet in your sins.

I.    You are lost.


Verse 18  Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.

I.    Every person who died, having faith in Christ are lost and cannot be helped.


Verse 19  If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.

I.    This is really the truth.


II.   See Verse 32 - Why fight the battle to do all these things for Christ if there isn't an eternity?

A.  We would be just as well off to eat and drink, (have a good time) because when we die we have nothing to gain.

B.   Paul remembers the battle at Ephesus and the unbelievers crying for three hours concerning their goddess Diane.


III. How deep is our "Christianity"?

A.  A Christian is a person who is a saved follower of Christ.

1.   Does you Christianity go into eternity.

2.   Or is it a garment that you put on on Sunday?

3.   Is it good when circumstances of this life go against you?

B.   Somebody would ask, "What if the entire Bible is a big lie?"

1.   To follow the teachings of the Bible would still be worth it.

2.   There is plenty of love and fellowship among Christians.

3.   Besides, what we have in Christ is just a small touch of what heaven will be like.

4.   When we consider all the rebuke we must face, all the punishment from unbelievers, and such, it is not worth all the misery we must go through if religion is only good in this life.

C.   A law is a limit.

1.   There is a speed limit which if you go over, you will likely get a ticket.

2.   Gal. 5:22,23 - There is no law against love, joy, peace, longsuffering, etc.

3.   This means there is no limit to all these good things.


Verse 20. But now is Christ risen from the dead, [and] become the firstfruits of them that slept.

I.    Christ is the firstfruits, then the saved follow Him in the resurrection..

A.  Jesus is the first to rise from the dead that didn't have to die again.

1.   Elijah raised a young boy from the dead, but that young boy had to die again.

2.   Elisha raised from the dead, but those people had to die again.

3.   Lazarus was risen from the dead, but he had to die again.

B.   Christ is a symbol of the resurrection.

1.   Israel is the barley harvest.

2.   The Gentiles is the wheat harvest.


Verse 21  For since by man [came] death, by man [came] also the resurrection of the dead.

I.    Adam is the man who caused death to come upon all men.

A.  Verse 22 explains this.

B.   People are born into the world with the seed of sin and will die.

1.   They gain strength as they grow, and they look so sweet and innocent.

2.   The fact is they are going to die because of sin.


II.   The second Adam, Christ, will give the resurrection from the dead to every believer.


Verse 22  For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.

I.    Adam brought sin to all, and all die.


II.   Christ brings salvation, forgiveness of sins, and eternal life through the resurrection of these bodies.


III. This verse is not talking about universal atonement.

A.  All die because all are in Adam.

B.   All that are in Christ shall be made alive.

1.   Those that are lost will not be made alive.

2.   God knows those that are His, and will save them when their time comes.


Verse 23  But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.

I.    People will be saved when their time comes.


Verse 24  Then [cometh] the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.

I.    There is an end to this world.

A.  This is talking about the reign of Christ.


II.   What kingdom will be delivered up?

A.  The kingdom of heaven, the kingdom of Christ, and the kingdom of God are all the same.

1.      A lot of people believe they are three separate kingdoms, but there aren't.

2.      The Kingdom of Christ, the Kingdom of God, and the Kingdom of Heaven are three manifestations of the same kingdom.

B.   What is necessary to have a kingdom.

1.   You must have authority.

2.   You must have the power to carry out that authority.

3.   You must have a people to rule.

4.   You must have a place to rule.

C.   The Kingdom of God is within you.

1.   This is the way the kingdom is now.

2.   There is coming a time when Christ will rule in a literal kingdom from Jerusalem for 1,000 years.


III. Christ will establish himself as the supreme authority and ruler during the 1,000 year reign.

A.  This will begin during the tribulation period.

B.   It will continue during the 1,000 year reign when Christ reigns from Jerusalem.

1.   Satan will be bound in the bottomless pit for 1,000 years.

2.   Those that don't want to worship Christ during the 1,000 years will receive the judgments of Egypt upon them.

C.   At the end of the 1,000 years, Satan will be turned loose and will deceive many people.

1.   Christ will destroy them.

2.   Then Satan will be cast into the Lake of Fire.

3.   Then the lost will be judged and cast into the lake of fire.

4.   Then death and hell will be cast into the lake of fire.

5.   Notice: Death is the last enemy that will be destroyed.

6.   When death is cast away for ever, then Christ will turn the kingdom over to His Father, and then we shall see God face to face.


Verse 25  For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.

I.    See part # III of verse 24 for an explanation of this verse.


Verse 26  The last enemy [that] shall be destroyed [is] death.

I.    See part # III, C of verse 24 for an explanation of this verse.


Verse 27  For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under [him, it is] manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him.

I.    It is at this point that Christ will turn over His kingdom to the Father.

A.  Christ won't be done away with.

1.   This is the meaning of, "it is manifest that he is excepted".

2.   Christ will still be Christ, but we will more understand his relationship to the father in that day.


Verse 28  And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.

I.    This is talking about the time when there will be no more time.


II.   In that day we will see God, realizing more and more the relationship between Jesus, and the Holy Spirit and God.


III. Notice that everything that will happen in the last days is not recorded in these few verses.

A.  II Peter 3:9-11 - Peter doesn't include all the events of the rapture, the tribulation, and millennium.

1.   Peter did believe in those events.

2.   It didn't fit into the train of thoughts to present those events at this time.

B.   Paul also believes all the events of the end time, but he doesn't present them right here because they don't fit into his train of thought.


IV. We can see the end of our faith by believing what the Bible says.

A.  We can look at least 1,000 years into the future and see what will happen.

B.   Job said he would see God in his flesh even after the skin worms destroyed his body.


Verse 29  Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?

I.    How baptism ties in with the resurrection.


II.   The Mormons believe that if a person dies without being baptized, then a living person ought to be baptized in place of that dead person (a proxy).


III. This dead is not physical death.

A.  This is a spiritual death to the world.

1.   Every saved person is dead to the world.

B.   Baptism is a symbol of the death, burial, and resurrection.

1.   It is a picture of what Christ has done in the heart of the believer.

2.   It is a picture that the saved person won't live like he did when he was lost.

3.   They are put under the water to show they are dead to this world.

4.   They rise out of the water showing their hope is in the resurrection that shall come.


Verse 30  And why stand we in jeopardy every hour?

I.    Paul got into a lot of trouble preaching the gospel.

A.  Why would Paul go to all that trouble, putting himself into that danger if there is no resurrection of the dead?


Verse 31  I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.

I.    Everyday Paul wanted to consecrate his life to God every day.


Verse 32  If after the manner of men I have fought with beasts at Ephesus, what advantageth it me, if the dead rise not? let us eat and drink; for to morrow we die.

I.    Refer back to Acts 18 and 19 about the terrible times Paul experienced at Ephesus.


Verse 33  Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.

I.    This is not "Emily Post" manners.

A.  This verse is saying:

1.   Evil communications - the way you talk and the way you live.

2.   Good manners - your manner of life.


Verse 34  Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak [this] to your shame.

I.    It is time to wake up, stop sinning and life right.


II.   We must be aware that there are people who do not know Jesus Christ as their personal saviour.

A.  It is to our shame that this is so.


Verse 35. But some [man] will say, How are the dead raised up? and with what body do they come?

I.    This is a common question.  Note the answer.


Verse 36  [Thou] fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die:

I.    A person is a fool that questions this.


Verse 37  And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other [grain]:

I.    The seed that is put in the ground doesn't look like the plant that comes from the seed.


II.   The body that is put in the ground will not look like the resurrected body that comes from the ground.


III. Some believe the resurrected body will "look like" the fleshly body.

A.  I John 3:1-3 - John said he didn't know what we will look like.

B.   Gen. 1:26 - Some believe that God making man in his image and in his likeness means that we physically "look like" God.

1.   I don't believe this is the proper meaning.

2.   I believe Gen. 1:26 means that man is made like God, with spirit, soul and body.

3.   God reveals Himself to us in the form of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

4.   It doesn't really bother me what I will look like.

5.   As long as I look like Jesus, I will be satisfied.


IV. Rev. 21 gives a description of the New Jerusalem.

A.  I don't believe this is a literal description.

B.   I believe the beauty of the New Jerusalem is beyond description,.

1.   It would be impossible to describe the New Jerusalem with human terms, and using physical descriptions.

2.   It has not entered into the mind of man the great glories of eternity that await us in eternity.

C.   Is 6:1-5 - Isaiah knew he would die because he had seen some of the glories of God.

1.   This wasn't true, but it show the point that it is impossible for a person to live and see the glories of God.

2.   The same thing happened to Samson's dad and mother.


Verse 38  But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him, and to every seed his own body.



Verse 39  All flesh [is] not the same flesh: but [there is] one [kind of] flesh of men, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, [and] another of birds.



Verse 40  [There are] also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial: but the glory of the celestial [is] one, and the [glory] of the terrestrial [is] another.



Verse 41  [There is] one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for [one] star differeth from [another] star in glory.



Verse 42  So also [is] the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption:

I.    This is a type of the resurrection compared to planting a seed.


Verse 43  It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power:



Verse 44  It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.



Verse 45  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam [was made] a quickening spirit.



Verse 46  Howbeit that [was] not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual.



Verse 47  The first man [is] of the earth, earthy: the second man [is] the Lord from heaven.



Verse 48  As [is] the earthy, such [are] they also that are earthy: and as [is] the heavenly, such [are] they also that are heavenly.



Verse 49  And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.



Verse 50  Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.



Verse 51. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,



Verse 52  In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.



Verse 53  For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal [must] put on immortality.



Verse 54  So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.



Verse 55  O death, where [is] thy sting? O grave, where [is] thy victory?



Verse 56  The sting of death [is] sin; and the strength of sin [is] the law.



Verse 57  But thanks [be] to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.



Verse 58. 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.