Tag Archives: Jesus

1 Corinthians 15- Victory in Jesus

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. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:54- 56

One of my favorite hymns is “Victory in Jesus” , no matter what mood you are feeling at the beginning, by the time you’re finished singing that song, you can’t help but feel rejuvenated and hopeful. Because the message is true, we have Victory in Jesus Christ! 

Recently John Macarthur did a sermon about “We lose down here”, and I objected to this idea, and received major criticism for that. The scriptures above are my BIblical defense for my stance, but also I think we are not looking at this from an eternal perspective.

When Jesus died on the cross, did he lose? Of course not, Christ willingly laid down his life for us and defeated sin and death forever. From a worldly perspective , it might look like Christ had lost, however we know from an eternal perspective Jesus Christ is victorious, as Christ walked out of the tomb on Sunday morning. As the Apostle Paul said “O death, where is your sting?, O grave, where is your victory? Our greatest enemy death was defeated, there is nothing possible on this Earth that can defeat us when we abide in Christ

Did the Apostle Paul lose while being beheaded? Absolutely not, Paul finished the race, Paul completed his calling and mission from God, and said “To depart from the body, is to be present with The Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8) This idea or concept that a Born Again Christ could ever lose makes no sense to me. Regardless of what happens to me, even if I get killed for my faith, I have victory in Jesus Christ, period. Whether I live or die, I have Victory in Jesus, whether I’m rich or poor, I have Victory in Jesus, whether I’m healthy or sick, I always have Victory in Jesus Christ!

Looking at this from the flip side, you can be young, rich, and healthy and still be losing, why? Because without Christ, you have the enemy of death that will always haunt you at every corner. There is no Victory without Jesus Christ, there is no hope without Jesus Christ, there is no purpose for your life without Jesus Christ, in Christ we have everything including Victory!

The Apostle Paul says it best “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- The Last Trumpet

Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 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. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 1 Corinthians 15:51-53

In modern day Christianity, these scriptures are typically used to support the doctrine of a “Pre-Tribulation Rapture” , but a few questions should be asked, did the early Church interpret these scriptures to mean this also? Did the early Church have any concept of a Pre-Trib Rapture? From history it appears the Pre-Trib Rapture is a newer idea invented by a man named John Darby around the 1830’s, we can’t really  find any Apostles or Church Father who ever supported this idea or concept.

But let’s just take a look at the scriptures for themselves, is Paul teaching a Pre-Trib Rapture here? Paul begins by stating “We shall not all die, but we shall all be changed” This is a good start, but what about those who have died already? Notice Paul says “We shall ALL be changed” Paul isn’t just referencing those Christians who are still alive, he’s referencing ALL Christians throughout history, Paul is talking about the resurrection of the saints into our glorified bodies

Next the Pre-Trib Rapture doctrine really falls apart, Paul says “At any moment, at the LAST Trumpet, for the Trumpet will sound and the DEAD will be raised immortal, and WE shall be changed. Paul states “The LAST Trumpet” , Paul is not talking about the first trumpet before the Tribulation, he states the Last trumpet. We can reference the Last Trumpet in Matthew 24

Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Matthew 24:30-31

The Last Trumpet signifies the Return of Christ, the Rapture of the Church , and the Resurrection of the Saints, The Bible doesn’t support the Rapture of the Church as a separate event from the Return of Christ and the resurrection of the Saints. All the Earth will mourn at the Return of Christ, why? Because it’s the final judgment

For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 1 Thessalonians 4:16

The Apostle Paul consistently supports his teaching here in Thessalonians, The Lord himself will descend from Heaven, meaning Christ is Returning, notice the last trumpet is referenced here again also. The dead in Christ, Born Again Christians,, will be resurrected first. This event is not just about the Rapture of the Church, this is a cumulative event including the return of Christ and the resurrection of Christians throughout history

The takeaway from this, is it’s all good news for Born Again Christians. Whatever your belief in the timing of the Rapture, salvation is in Jesus Christ alone and we have Victory through Christ!  Let’s not make the Rapture a stumbling block and division for the Church, Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- The Heart of the Gospel

Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.1 Corinthians 15:50

Today I’m just going to be focusing on this one verse from Paul, there are several reasons for this , however I don’t want to just skim over this statement Paul made. I don’t think the majority of people understand the heart of the gospel message of Jesus Christ. What do I mean by this? When I walk around to evangelize to people, I ask them are you Christian? Many people would say “Yes, they will list all the works they do justify their status as a Christian. Then I ask them “Are you Born Again”? There head turns to the side in utter confusion, the majority of people have no concept of being Born Again, yet it is the heart of the gospel message

Notice Paul’s words here “Flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God” This should be an eye opening statement for people. In your current condition, you can’t enter into Heaven, unless you are Born Again. How many people does this disqualify? People will respond, I go to Church every week, I pay a tithe, I pray, all of these things are good, but none of these things will earn your salvation. Most people have this mindset, if I do A, B, C, then I’m qualified for Heaven, NO! You must be Born Again

Jesus said “Unless you are Born Again, you can’t see the Kingdom of God” (John 3:3) I know I quote this scripture alot, but this revelation by Christ changes everything! Paul’s teaching here is totally inline with Christ teaching on regeneration and baptism of the Holy Spirit. 

Our brother Damon said “There is no such thing as a Christian that is not Born Again” Yes , I totally agree with that statement, however there are people who think that they are Christians who are not Born Again, that’s the problem. People believing religion or good works can save you, it’s been a heresy since the beginning of time. 

So what is the heart of the gospel message? You must be Born Again, what does that mean? You are spiritually dead in your sins, you can’t possibly understand God or be in his presence in your sinful nature. Your old self must be crucified, it must be dead, and your new self needs to be risen with The Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 6)

You need to be baptized and sealed by the Holy Spirit, (Matthew 3:11, Ephesians 1:13) Without the regeneration of the Holy Spirit, you are still spiritually dead in your sins (Ephesians 2) How do people come to this understanding? By the Moral Law of God and the Holy Spirit (Romans 3:20)

Let nobody be deceived, you can’t inherit the Kingdom of God unless you are Born Again , this is the heart of the gospel message, Christ is the only way to salvation,(John 14:6, Acts 4:12) Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- Children of God

Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.  1 Corinthians 15:46-49

 In order for you to become saved, your old self must die first, this is the gospel message and this is what Paul is referring to here. The Apostle Paul says here “The spiritual doesn’t come first, but first the natural, and then the spiritual” This again is Paul echoing the teachings of Jesus Christ on becoming Born Again (John 3) You need to be regenerated and baptized by the Holy Spirit first, before you will can receive a glorified body

The Apostle Paul talks about the dying of the old man through his teachings (Romans 6, Ephesians 4, Colossians 3) The first man is Adam, who brought the curse of sin and death upon all humanity. The second man is Jesus Christ, who defeated sin and death, by dying for our sins on the cross and rising on the 3rd day. 

What a powerful reminder and revelation, that Jesus Christ became the natural so we can become the spiritual, think about that! God became a man to die for your sins, so through The Lord’s atonement, you can inherit the Kingdom of God. If this doesn’t shake your soul to the core, you are dry bones and in need of the breath of God upon your life. The Creator became the creation to give you the gift of salvation!

We are all sinners just like Adam, as is the earthly (Adam), such are they also that are earthly. And Born Again Christians, take on the nature of Christ, filled and sealed with the Holy Spirit, and as is the heavenly (Christ), such are they also that are heavenly (Born Again) You can’t inherit and enter the Kingdom of God, unless you are regenerated

We are all made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27), we have borne the image of Adam, we were once dead in our sins, we were once unregenerated dry bones (Ezekiel 37), but now we bear the image of the Heavenly man, Jesus Christ, we have been Born Again , our sins washed by the blood of the Lamb, we have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit, adopted as Children of God, Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- Born Again

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. 1 Corinthians 15:42-44

Previously I emphasized the importance of Jesus having a physical resurrection, where as Paul stated “If Christ is not Risen, our faith is worthless” (1 Cor. 15:14) Some people were surprised to learn there are some groups that reject the physical resurrection of Christ, one of the scriptures they use to support their claim is verse 44 , Paul says here “It is sown a natural body, and it is raised a spiritual body” At first glance this appears to support their claim, however lets take a deeper look at the original Greek word

The Greek word translated as spiritual here is pneumatikon, looking at the meaning of this word it means non-carnal, regenerated, and supernatural. Now when I say these words, a light bulb should start going off in your head. Remember what Jesus said “Unless we are Born Again, you will not see the Kingdom of Heaven” (John 3:3) What does Paul say a little later in this chapter “Flesh and blood can’t inherit the Kingdom of God” (1 Cor. 15:50)

The words of Christ and Paul are almost exactly the same, you need to become Born Again to be saved. When we are talking about a “spiritual body” here in the English translation, we are talking about a regenerated person, a person who is Born Again, baptized by the Holy Spirit, not living for the flesh. Paul is not saying you will become a ghost during the resurrection or get wings and play a harp, Paul is stating you will get your physical glorified body, a body without sin, a body designed the way it was meant before the curse of sin into this world

And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 1 Corinthians 15:45

The sin of Adam, brought the curse upon all humanity. The last Adam, who is Jesus Christ , made a quickening or life- giving pneuma. Now again at first glance it seems as if Jesus Christ became a spirit, but take a deeper look into the Greek word pneuma. This is the same Greek word typically translated as the Holy Spirit, wind, breathe. How do we become regenerated? By the Holy Spirit, we need a new heart and mind, a baptism of the Holy Spirit (John 3)

Again I believe what Paul is trying to convey here is through Jesus Christ we become Born Again by the Holy Spirit, to become regenerated and eventually received our gloried bodies to rule with Christ forever!

Jesus Christ physically rose from the dead, and you will be physically raised one day also in your glorified, regenerated body at the final resurrection , Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- Live Like There Is A Tomorrow

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? And why stand we in jeopardy every hour? I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily. 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. Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame. 1 Corinthians 15:29-34

 We live in an Atheistic world today, a society where ideas like Evolution have been adapted and taught as truth. It’s no surprise why the world is so lost today, if the majority of people’s worldview is naturalism, meaning there is nothing super-natural, it’s no surprise people live like animals with no hope

As the Apostle Paul says here “If the dead rise not, let us eat, drink, for tomorrow we die” If there is no afterlife, then lets party like there is no tomorrow! And that’s exactly how the world lives, like there is no tomorrow. People today give no thought to anything supernatural or spiritual, they live as if this is it, so they continue to accumulate their sins and compound the wrath of God on their souls

This is why its very important we share the gospel with everyone, they need to understand we have an eternal soul with eternal consequences. This current life is brief and temporary, but we will spend an eternity somewhere. The best question to start a conversation is “Do you believe in an Afterlife”? It’s a harmless and simple question, but it gets the soul thinking. 

Paul goes on to say, and I’m paraphrasing “I risk my life daily for Christ, if there is no resurrection, why advantage do I have over you”? Those who are not secure in their salvation are going to live in great fear, because they believe death is the end. Paul risked his life everyday for the gospel without fear, why? Because as Paul said “To depart from the body is to be with The Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8) Paul knew where he was going because Christ is Risen! We in Christ should be secure in knowing we will be with The Lord also, why? Because Christ is Risen!

Now I know some will think , this post is way off, not in context with the 1rst century thought ect, and that’s true. But look how this applies to our worldviews today! It doesn’t change, because Christ is Risen, Jesus defeated the curse of sin and death! This is our living hope, this is the Good News!

As Paul ends here “Awake to righteousness and sin not” You life has meaning and consequences, Live for Christ because there will always be a tomorrow in Jesus Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- Death Is Defeated

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. For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. For “He has put all things under His feet.” But when He says “all things are put under Him,it is evident that He who put all things under Him is excepted. 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. 1 Corinthians 15:24-28

What is your greatest enemy? Alot of people will say a certain person or group, other people might say money or happiness, but the truth is your greatest enemy is death. No matter who you are or where your from, no matter how much money you have, nobody will escape death because of the curse of sin in this world. 

Satan has blinded the mind of this world to accept death as something normal, some even glorify death. We have probably heard the old phrase “there are two guarantees in life, death and taxes” But the truth is death is horrifying and unnatural. We were never designed to die originally, we worship the God of the living and were created to live forever! (Mark 12:27)

So Jesus on the cross, defeated the greatest enemy to mankind, Christ defeated death forever! As the Apostle Paul states “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death” When you understand how horrible death is, and how great the gift of grace and salvation is, you understand why this is called the Gospel or Good News!

Many people don’t receive the gospel as Good News because they don’t understand the horror of death and their depraved state. God destroyed death by becoming a man and rising from the dead, a concept so radical that even Satan could not figure it out! Satan thought he was the mastermind to getting the Son of God crucified, when actually Satan accomplished what God was already going to do! God is sovereign, and the head of Satan was crushed at the cross

The Apostle Paul goes on to say “All things are put Under Him” I think Philippians 2 would be great commentary to parallel this teaching, because of the obedience of Christ to the cross, Jesus is exalted the name above every name, every knee will bow and tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, on Earth, in Heaven, and in Hell (Philippians 2)

When Jesus rose from the tomb, it was evident that death was defeated forevermore, and one day through Christ , we will rise again to reign forever with God Almighty, Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- Christ The First Fruits

But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 1 Corinthians 15:20-23

Many people ask what was the point of “Holy Days” assigned by God in the Old Testament, well all of them point to Jesus Christ. Today we are going to take a look at the Feast of First Fruits and how Jesus fulfilled this day. Now of course this is not my idea, this was affirmed here by the Apostle Paul, as he states “Now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept”

The Jewish audience knew exactly what Paul was referring to when he stated Christ is the firstfruits of all that died. For us Gentiles to understand, we need to understand the Feast of First Fruits mentioned in Leviticus 23. It was observed on Nisan 16 which was 3 days after the Passover! Do you already see the prophetic connection? Passover is the day Jesus died on the cross for our sins, which the Church typically calls “Good Friday”. This of course was the fulfillment of the Passover, as Jesus Christ is the Lamb of God (John 1:29, Isaiah 53)

It’s not a surprise that on First Fruits, it was required of Israel to provide a spotless lamb (Lev. 23:12) We must also understand that First fruits was about an offering to God. As we know Jesus Christ was the atonement offering for our sins, Christ is the true First Fruits and was confirmed by his resurrection on the 3rd Day which was the feast of First Fruits

Deuteronomy Chapter 26 gives even more details about the Feast of First Fruits,  part of the celebration is to remember the Exodus and how delivered Israel from slavery, Jesus Christ again is the fulfillment as Christ has delivered us from the slavery of sin and death (Romans 6:20)

The feast is also a reminder how God delivered Israel to the Promised Land (Deuteronomy 26:9) Because of Christ , we are reconciled back to God , and part of the New Covenant to inherit God’s Kingdom including the New Heavens and Earth (Revelation 21) This is a foreshadow of our promise land and deliverance.

Israel had been celebrating the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ for many years , Christ is our First Fruits, the fulfillment of all things, Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- The Central Theme

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. 1 Corinthians 15:12-15

The Resurrection of Jesus Christ is the central theme of Christianity, it’s the central theme of our faith and life. As the Apostle Paul says “If Christ is not rise, your preaching and faith are in vein” If Christ didn’t rise from the dead, then there is no hope for any of us. Without the resurrection of Christ, there is no Christianity, there is no salvation for anyone without the resurrection of Christ

People will often ask, why do we worship on a Sunday? Many will echo conspiracy theories of Roman paganism for Sunday worship, No we worship on Sunday morning because Christ is Risen on Sunday morning, period. All four gospel state Jesus rose on the first day of the week (Sunday) the early Church began worshiping on Sunday morning (Acts 20:7, 1 Corinthians 16:2) The resurrection of Christ changed everything, no longer are we dead in our sins, but Christ is Risen and we have been delivered from sin and death

For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye 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. 1 Corinthians 15:16-19

As the Apostle Paul states here “If Christ is not raised, your faith is worthless, and you are still in your sins” Think about that! This is why the Resurrection of Christ is the central doctrine of Christianity, if you get the resurrection wrong, all of your beliefs are wrong. Doesn’t matter what good or religious works you have performed  in your life, without Jesus Christ walking out of that tomb, it would all be worthless

So its not a surprise, everything in Christianity is focused around the Resurrection. This is the center of the gospel message, Christ died, Christ is Risen, Christ will come again. This should be preached every week from the pulpits, this is the most important message.

So next time you go to Church, celebrate and worship Christ is Risen, it should be an Easter Sunday celebration every Sunday, because Christ is Risen therefore we have a living hope! Amen!

1 Corinthians 15- Case For Christ

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. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time. 1 Corinthians 15:6-9

Think about all the eyewitnesses to the Risen Christ after the Resurrection. Here the Apostle Paul states that “Jesus was seen by more than 500 people at one time” Now talk about having strong eye witnesses for a case. Paul even stated that most of these eye witnesses were still alive, so if you want to follow up with some questions, that could have.

The fact is , the case for the Risen Christ is rock solid, every reputable historian affirms the resurrection of Christ is a historical fact. Even before Jesus appeared to these 500 men, remember in the gospels when Jesus appears to the women at the tomb (John 20:11-18) Jesus appeared to the Apostles in the Upper Room (John 20:19-31) Jesus appearance to Peter on the shore (John 21:1-20) Jesus walked with the men on the Road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-35) and of course Jesus appeared to Paul on the Road to Damascus (Acts 9)

Countless of encounters people had with the Risen Lord , who has transformed their lives. To the point that all these brothers and sisters were willing to die for their faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord. And as Paul mentioned James, the brother of Jesus who didn’t believe him until he had seen Christ is Risen. The evidence of the Risen Lord is written throughout history and the story never changed, even up till this present day

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. Therefore whether it were I or they, so we preach, and so ye believed  1 Corinthians 15:10-11

The Apostle Paul’s life is a walking testimony for Christ, he persecuted the Church, including being responsible for the death of Stephen (Acts 7:54-Acts 8:3) But on the Road to Damascus Christ called Paul and transformed his life (Acts 9) Paul went from being the chief of all sinners to a vessel for Christ and building God’s Kingdom

The Case for Christ is very solid and before you dismiss Jesus Christ as your Lord, check the facts! Christ has died , Christ is Risen, Christ will come again, Amen!