Read I Corinthians 14 -- 16
In Today’s Reading:
Gifts in the church; the resurrection of Christ; collection for the saints in Jereusalem; Paul's future plans.
The physical resurrection of Jesus Christ is indispensable to our Christian faith. If He did not physically rise, then He did not conquer death, and we have no hope beyond the grave. It is a triumphant fact that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures (I Corinthians 15:3-4). For the Christian, death is not the end of life, but the beginning of a glorious, eternal future with our wonderful Lord. 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 (in Christ) shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible (physical part of us) must put on incorruption (free from the power of death). . . . Thanks be to God, who gives us the victory (over death) through our Lord Jesus Christ (15:51-53,57).
Paul concluded his glorious thoughts on the return of the Lord Jesus by saying: Therefore, my beloved brethren, be stedfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain (it is always profitable) (15:58).
Our Savior has assured us that the hour is coming, when all who are in the graves shall hear His voice, And shall come forth; those who have done good, to the resurrection of life; and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of damnation (John 5:28-29).
We have the utmost confidence that, if the Spirit of Him who raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, (then) He who raised up Christ (Jesus) from the dead shall also quicken (restore to life) your mortal bodies by His Spirit who dwells in you (Romans 8:11).
The Lord Himself shall descend from Heaven with a shout . . . and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first (I Thessalonians 4:16). All graves will be opened; the land and sea will give up their dead; and the living will be instantly transformed, rising out of corruptible bodies into immortal ones. With our greatest love, gratitude, praise, and loyalty, let us continue looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13).
Our threefold purpose for living is to become the person God planned for us to be so that we may accomplish His will for us on earth and be prepared for eternity with Him. All earthly achievements are meaningless unless they serve the eternal purposes of God. Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh (our carnal nature), to live after the flesh (a life ruled by the standards of this world). For if you live after the flesh, you shall die: but if through (the power of) the Spirit you do (continue to) mortify (put to death), the deeds of the body, you shall live (forever) (Romans 8:12-13).
Thought for Today: Because Christ died and rose again, we can live for all eternity with Him. What precious assurance!
14:10 signification = meaning; 14:11 barbarian = foreigner; 14:20 in malice be ye children = be as harmless as a baby; 14:27 by course = in turn; 15:9 meet = worthy; 15:20 slept = have died; 15:33 evil communications corrupt good manners = evil companions or associations ruin or defile good character; 15:40 celestial = heavenly; terrestrial = earthly; 16:2 gatherings = collections; 16:13 stand fast in the faith = remain true to the Lord; quit you = be courageous; 16:15 addicted = devoted; 16:22 Anathema = accursed; Maranatha = the Lord is coming!
For I Corinthians 14:21: See Isa. 28:11-12. I Cor. 15:25: See Psa. 110:1. I Cor. 15:27: See Psa. 8:6. I Cor. 15:32: See Isa. 22:13. I Cor. 15:45: See Gen. 2:7. I Cor. 15:54: See Isa. 25:8. I Cor. 15:55: See Hos. 13:14.
Pray for your pastor · Country: Equatorial Guinea (466,000) in western Africa · Major language: Spanish · Freedom for churches at this time · 71% Roman Catholic; 19% ancestral spirit worship and medicine men; 6% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Pray for spiritual prosperity (I Chronicles 4:9-10).
Memory Verse for the Week: I Corinthians 6:11