Summary: It has been said that this is truly the great resurrection chapter of the entire Bible. The first eleven verses present the Gospel message and the evidence for its truthfulness. Paul gives three proofs to his readers that Jesus Christ has indeed been rais
THOUGHTS ABOUT THE PASSAGE:
As Vice President, George Bush represented the U.S. at the funeral of former Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev, he was deeply moved by a silent protest carried out by Brezhnev’s widow. She stood motionless by the coffin until seconds before it was closed. Then, just as the soldiers touched the lid, Brezhnev’s wife performed an act of great courage and hope. She reached down and made the sign of the cross on her husband’s chest. There in the center of secular, atheistic power, the wife of the man who had run it all hoped that her husband was wrong. She hoped that there was another life, and that life was best represented by Jesus who died on the cross, and that the same Jesus might yet have mercy on her husband. (Gary Thomas, in Christianity Today, October 3, 1994).
Paul has finished his answers to the Corinthians’ questions, and he now goes on to a new subject. It has been said that this is truly the great resurrection chapter of the entire Bible. The first eleven verses present the Gospel message and the evidence for its truthfulness. Paul gives three proofs to his readers that Jesus Christ has indeed been raised from the dead:
1. Their salvation (vv. 1,2): Paul had preached the Gospel (which included Christ’s resurrection) and their faith had transformed their lives. After all, a dead savior cannot save anybody.
2. The Old Testament Scriptures (vv. 3,4): The Old Testament declared Jesus’ resurrection on the third day in the experience of Jonah. Other proof texts are Acts 2:25-28; 13:32-33.
3. The fact that He was seen by many witnesses (vv. 5-11): Peter saw Him, the disciples saw Him collectively (v. 5). Five hundred plus people saw Him at the same time (v. 6) and James, Jesus’ half-brother saw Him (v. 7). The greatest witness of the resurrection was Paul himself.
In humility Paul did not magnify his own personal credentials, but only the sovereign grace of God as he states; "But by the grace of God I am what I am." Lord, help this to be my testimony also.
True humility is not convincing myself that I am worthless, but recognizing God’s work in me. Paul shares how God wants to accomplish many things through my life, but only because of His mercy and not because we deserve anything.