Spiritual Body

1Corinthians 15:39-44 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. There are also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial: but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differs from another star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. 

‘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.’ No two species of animals have the same flesh or flavour. This is also true of vegetables, grain, and other things in nature.

‘Celestial bodies’ [Greek: epouranios]. There are heavenly bodies and earthly bodies which have different glories even as the sun, moon, and stars differ in glory (15:40-41).

‘Terrestrial’ [Greek: epigeios] that which pertains to the earth.

‘So also is the resurrection of the dead’-  All resurrected bodies will be immortal, but they will possess different degrees of glory. Our bodies are sown in corruption (15:21-22); raised in incorruption (15:51-54); sown in dishonor (Gen. 3:19); raised in glory (Php. 3:21; Col. 3:4); sown in weakness (Jas. 1:10-11); raised in power (15:53-56; 2Cor. 5:4); and sown as natural bodies (John 5:28-29; Dan. 12:2); raised as spiritual bodies (15:44; Php. 3:21).

‘Corruption’ [Greek: phthora] moral corruption, decay, ruin, depravity, wickedness (15:42, 50; Rom. 8:21; Gal. 6:8; 2Pet. 1:4; 2:12, 19). Also translated “perish” (Col. 2:22) and “be destroyed” (2Pet. 2:12).

‘Incorruption’ [Greek: aphtharsia] incorruption (referring to resurrected bodies, 1Cor. 15:42, 50, 53, 54); and immortality (referring to the life people get through the gospel, Rom. 2:7; 2Tim. 1:10).

‘Spiritual body’ [Greek: pneumatikos]. By this is meant the body will become of immortal substance. It has no reference to becoming immaterial, intangible, and without flesh and bones, for our resurrected bodies will still be flesh and bone, though not flesh and blood. Spirit bodies are as real as can be, but of a higher substance than natural bodies. God and angels have spirit bodies, and yet they are real tangible and materialized bodies, as proved by hundreds of passages describing them and many personal acts.

‘Natural body’ [Greek: psuchikos] soulish (2:14; 15:44-46; Jas. 3:15; Jude 1:19). This is man living under the control of the fleshly passions, the sensual and depraved part of man in contrast with the rational part (6:9-11; Gal. 5:19-21; Rom. 1:29-32; Col. 3:5-10). He is the animal man as opposed to the spiritual man. He has no sense of spiritual values and no relish for them. He counts it the highest wisdom to live for this world and carnal pleasures. Spiritual things are foolishness to him. He cannot see their supreme excellence due to animal appetites and being spiritually dead (Eph. 2:1-9).

God Gives It a Body

1Corinthians 15:35-38 But some man will say, How are the dead raised up? and with what body do they come? Thou fool, that which thou sowed is not quickened, except it die: And that which thou sowed, thou sowed not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain: But God gives it a body as it has pleased him, and to every seed his own body. 

‘But some man will say, How are the dead raised up? …’ This is the 13th and last New Testament prophecy in 1Corinthians (15:35-56) that will be fulfilled at the rapture.

‘How are the dead raised up? and with what body do they come?’ What kind of bodies will people have in the resurrection?

‘But God gives it a body as it has pleased him.’ The resurrection is illustrated and proved by a grain of wheat and other grains: New bodies of grain are not reproduced without death (15:36; John 12:24). Bodies of grain that die are not the same bodies as those produced, but like them (15:37; John 12:24). Grain must see corruption before reproducing new bodies (John 12:24). Grain that does not die remains the same as long as it exists. Marred and wrinkled grains reproduce perfect bodies in normal reproduction. Parts of grain could be cut off and not sown, and yet perfect bodies produced. There is no difference in the appearance of original and reproduced grain. All grains reproduce their own size, shape, and individual characteristics. Small and undeveloped grain, providing the life germ is there, will reproduce normal-sized grain. Reproduced grains are just as real, tangible, and material as those sown.

‘His own body’ – Every man will have his own body, not that of another. He will have his own color, appearance, size, shape, features, and characteristics, and be exactly like himself in the resurrection. Men will be men and women will be women. Such bodies will be like Christ only in the sense of immortality (15:39-54; Php. 3:21). God gives every person his own body.

At His Coming

1Corinthians 15:23  But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 

‘Order’ [Greek: tagma] rank or company. There are 5 raptures in the first resurrection: [1] Christ and the many saints that were resurrected after His resurrection (15:20, 15:23; Matt. 27:52-53; Eph. 4:8-10). [2] “Afterward they that are Christ’s at His coming” (15:23, 51-54; John 14:1-3; Luke 21:34-36; 2Cor. 5:1-8; Eph. 5:27; Php. 3:11, 20-21; 1Thess. 2:19; 3:13; 4:13-17; 5:9, 23; 2Thess. 2:1, 7; Col. 3:4; Jas. 5:7-8; 1Jn. 2:28; 3:2; 1Pet. 5:4). Everyone in Christ, dead or alive, will be translated at this time. Not one person will be left on earth who is in Christ (1Thess. 4:16-17). [3] The 144,000 Jews saved in the first 3 1/2 years of Daniel’s 70th week (Rev. 7:1-8). They will be caught up as the man-child in the middle of this week or 3 1/2 years before the second coming (Rev. 12:5; 14:1-5; Isa. 66:7-8; Dan. 12:1). [4] The great multitude of tribulation saints who are saved after rapture 2, above and during the whole of Daniel’s 70th week (Rev. 6:1-19:21). The first martyrs of this period are told to rest until the rest of them are killed (Rev. 6:9-11) when vengeance will be taken and all raptured in time for the marriage supper (Rev. 7:9-17; 15:2-4; 20:4-6). Even those killed by the beast in the last 3 1/2 years of this week have a part in the first resurrection (Rev. 20:4-6). This proves their rapture in time for the marriage supper (Rev. 19:1-10) and in time to come back with Christ (Rev. 19:11-21; Jude 1:14; Zech. 14:5). [5] The rapture of the two witnesses, ending the first resurrection which began with the resurrection of Christ (Rev. 11:7-11). The fact and manner of the rapture are clearly revealed in this verse as well as verses 51-58 and the following Scriptures: “Watch you therefore, and pray always, that you may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man” (Luke 21:34-36), “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14:1-3), “That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish” (Eph. 5:27), “But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent [precede] them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1Thess. 4:13-17), “Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him…. For the mystery of iniquity does already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming” (2Thess. 2:1, 7, 8). See the other passages on the rapture (2Cor. 5:1-8; Php. 3:11, 20-21; 1Thess. 2:19; 3:13; 5:9, 23; Col. 3:4; Jas. 5:7, 8; 1Jn 2:28; 3:2; 1Pet. 5:4).

All is Then Vain

1Corinthians 15:12-19 Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. 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. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; you are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. 

‘Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?’ Some false apostles at Corinth denied the resurrection of the dead, that of Christ which was fully proven by these eyewitnesses and the first resurrection of the dead which takes place at the rapture (11:13-15;). Most believers today believes in Christ’s resurrection but has no idea what the first resurrection is and that refers to the rapture (15:35-58). There are many proofs of the resurrection: from Scripture (15:1-4; Job 19:25; Ps. 16:10; Dan. 12:2; Matt. 28:1-20; Mark 16:1-20; Luke 24:1-53; John 20-21; Acts 2:27); from fact (15:5-8; John 21:14; Eph. 1:20; Rev. 1:12-18); proved by the absurdity of unbelief in the resurrection (15:12-19); proved by declaration of fact (15:20-22); proved by prediction (15:23-56); proved by the inconsistency of those who deny it (15:29); proved by faith and consecration in sacrificing all for it (15:30-34); proved by nature (15:33-49); proved by the absolute necessity of immortality of body in order to inherit the kingdom and other promises (15:50-54); proved by fulfillment of prophecy in the final victory over death (15:54-57). ‘And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.’ Twelve calamities “if Christ be not risen”: We have no guarantee of the resurrection [rapture] (15:12-13, 20-23); our gospel is then in vain (15:14). our faith is then in vain (15:14, 17); the apostles then were false witnesses because they have preached such a doctrine (15:15); we are then all yet in our sins (15:17); all the dead are then perished (15:18); we then have no hope (15:19); we are then most miserable (15:19); we are then plain fools (15:30-32); nature is then a farce (15:35-49); all promises are then lies (15:50-54), and all prophecies are then false (15:55-56).

Lazarus Sleeps

John 11:5-16 Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. Then after that said he to his disciples, Let us go into Judaea again. His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goes thou thither again? Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumble not, because he sees the light of this world. But if a man walk in the night, he stumbles, because there is no light in him. These things said he: and after that he said unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleep; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit Jesus spoke of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent you may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him. Then said Thomas, which is called Didymus, unto his fellow disciples, Let us also go, that we may die with him. 

‘Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus’ – this statement proofs that Jesus loved Martha, Mary and Lazarus and that He was not neglecting His love, but awaiting the time to demonstrate greater love and power to them. Thus Jesus waited two more days after He was told of Lazarus and thereafter said to His disciples that they must go into Judaea again.

The disciples were worried because the Jews wanted to stone Jesus but Jesus explained that if any man walks in the day, he will not stumble because he sees the light of this world; but if he walks in the night, he stumbles, because there is no light in him.

Jewish days are as follows: sunrise to sunset: 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., or 12 equal parts, but they varied in length according to the season of the year (Matt. 20:3-12). The night was also divided into 12 equal parts or 4 watches of 3 equal parts or 3 hours each. The longest summer day would be about 14 hours and 12 minutes and the shortest 9 hours and 48 minutes.

Jesus then said to them that their friend Lazarus sleeps; and that He must go to wake Him from His sleep (referring here to death). The disciples took Lazarus’ sleep for rest and stated that he would get better if he rests. Jesus then said to them plainly that Lazarus was dead, indicating he died the day the messenger was sent. Jesus knew it by revelation.

Jesus was glad for their sakes that He was with Lazarus so that the disciples and others can believe in God. This miracle, like all others, was to confirm further His claims to His disciples that He was in reality the Messiah.

Introducing Thomas, called Didymus, or twin – it was customary for Jews to take a Greek or Latin name similar to their own when going to a foreign land or having much interaction with Greeks or Romans. He was one of the 12 apostles (Matt. 10:3; Mark 3:18; Luke 6:15; Acts 1:13-14). Thomas said that they must risk their lives, and if need be, dies with Jesus. Jesus, through love of His friends in Bethany, exposed Himself to death by His implacable enemies in Jerusalem. Thomas thought it certain death to venture again to this city.

The Parable of the Good Man of the House

But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.  Mat 24:43-44 KJV

Jesus here illustrates the need for readiness in view of His return to the Earth at an unpredictable time, so that each individual will escape the “sudden destruction” that will overtake those who are not ready.

And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.  For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.  Luke 21:34-36 KJV

The feasts of the Lord Lev. 23 were given to Israel as illustrations and through them God was teaching the gospel to the world and because there was no written Word yet, they typified things to come.  Let’s have a look at the meaning behind each one:

Fulfilled

  1. The yearly Passover feast Lev. 23:4-5; Num. 28:16; Ex. 12:1-39. typified the crucifixion of Christ Matt. 27:32-56
  2. The yearly feast of unleavened bread 23:6-8; Num. 28:17-25; Ex. 12:8,15-20btypified the burial of Christ Matt. 27:57-61
  3. The yearly feast of firstfruits 23:9-14; Num. 28:26-31 typified the resurrection of Christ Matt. 28:1-10; 2Cor. 15:2-23
  4. The yearly feast of Pentecost Lev. 23:15-21; 28:26-31 also known as the feast of harvest Exo. 23:16 and the feast of weeks Exo. 34:22; Deu. 16:10 typified the outpouring of the Holy Spirit Acts 2:1-4

Unfulfilled

  1. The yearly feast of trumpets Lev. 23:23-25; 29:1-6; typifies the rapture 1Cor. 15:52; 1 Thess. 4:13-18; Rev. 4:1
  2. The yearly feast of atonement Lev. 23:26-32; 29:7-11 typifies the Second Coming of Christ Rev. 19:11-21
  3. The yearly feast of tabernacles Lev. 23:33-34; 29:12-40 typifies the 1000 year Reign Isa. 65:6-66:24; Rev. 20:2-7

Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.  But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.  For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ 1Thess. 5:6-9 KJV

The Parable of the Leaven

Another parable spoke He unto them; The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened. Mat. 13:33 KJV

The kingdom of Heaven here is “like” leaven (sour dough) that is always used in a bad sense in Scripture, as meal is in a good sense. Therefore, the common interpretation of leaven converting the world is the exact opposite of the true interpretation of the leaven corrupting the meal. Note the use of leaven in Scripture:

In the Old Testament leaven is used to portray the evil nature of the sinner: Exodus 12:8, 15-20; 34:25; Levitikus 2:11; 6:17; 10:12 These last three passages refer to leaven being forbidden in certain sacrifices. Only in one sacrifice was it used in Levitikus 7:12-13 and here it signifies that though the believer has made peace with God through the work of another (Christ), there are still human traits and selfishness in him which must be continually purged by growth in grace.

In the New Testament leaven is used in four ways: first, the leaven of the Pharisees which was external religion, legalism, and hypocrisy; Mt. 23:14-28; Lk. 12:1 second, the leaven of the Sadducees, which was skepticism as to the supernatural and the teachings of the Scriptures on resurrection, angels, and spirits; Mt. 22:23-39; Acts 23:8 third, the leaven of the Harridans, which was materialism, a mixture of religion and worldliness, a political religion; Mk. 8:15 fourth, the leaven of both Pharisees and Sadducees as to their evil doctrines and practices. Mt. 16:11-12; 23:14, 16, 23-28

This illustrates how the kingdom of heaven teachings and the program of God in this age would become corrupted by false doctrines and unscriptural programs until the whole is corrupted. Lk. 18:8; 1Tim. 4:1-8; 2Tim. 3:5; 4:3-4; 2Pet. 3:3-4  A woman is a common symbol of evil in the moral or religious sphere and when used figuratively in an evil sense ‘she’ represents wickedness, fallacy, uncleanness, and unfaithfulness, Lam. 1:17 harlotry, Ezek. 16:15,22,26,28-59; 23:1-49; 36:17; Hos. 1:2; 2:2-17; 3:1; Rev. 17 wickedness, Zech. 5:5-11; Rev. 17:5 and false religion. Rev. 17 Thus, in a bad ethical sense a woman always symbolizes something wrong or out of place religiously.  Zech. 5:7-8; Rev. 2:20; 17:1-18  When used in a good sense women represent Israel, cp Gen. 37:9-10 with Rev. 12; Ezek. 16 the two covenants, Gal. 4:21-31 and righteousness and purity. 2Cor. 11:2; Rev. 19:7-8 A meal symbolizes the Word of God. Mt. 4:4; Jn. 6:47-63 and the three hidden measures of the meal illustrates all false teachings, religious programs, and professed Christian lives that seek to hide behind the Word of God (Christ as the Bread of Life and the Word of God Mt. 4:4; Jn. 6:47-63; Jn. 1:1).

The parable illustrates how the kingdom of Heaven would become like leaven, which a woman uses to corrupt Christ and His teachings. Both Christ and the Word of God are being corrupted today by the false church and its teachings. These teachers dominate the realm of profession and use it to deceive people by exalting their own words above the Word of God and their own leaders above Christ; by making the people feel that their church is infallible and that obedience to it and its dogmas is better than obedience to civil governments and by many comparable doctrines contrary to the Bible, thus corrupting the truth through the realm of profession.

Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaven the whole lump? Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 1Cor. 5:6-8 KJV