Summary: The Glory of the Resurrection - 1 Corinthians chapter 15 verse 1-9 sermon by Gordon Curley (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: email@example.com)
• Proof #1 - Their Salvation (vs 1-2).
• Proof # 2 - The Old Testament Scriptures (vs 3-4).
• Proof #3 - Christ Was Seen by Witnesses (vs 5-11).
• You may not know the name, but you will have all heard his voice.
• Mel Blanc has been called, “The man of 1,000 voices”.
• Some of those voices you will instantly recognise.
• ‘Woody Woodpecker, Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Daffy Duck, Sylvester & Tweety Pie’
• On his gravestone, just under the Star of David (he was Jewish),
• Is the inscription, “That’s all folks!”
• Because Mel Blanc was the voice for the end picture on those Warner Brothers cartoons,
• TRANSITION: Many people view life that way,
• When you are dead, you are dead - “That’s all folks!”
• Yet, Easter is a reminder that ‘death is not the end” - there is more to follow!
• Yesterday was the funeral of Prince Philip,
• As a nation we said our goodbyes for we will never see him ‘in the flesh’ again.
• He died, he will be buried and “For you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”
• In contrast Jesus Christ died, was buried and three days later rose again,
• To change Mel Blanc’s classic saying, “That’s NOT all folks!”
Quote: Andrew Murray:
“Jesus Christ was born twice.
The birth at Bethlehem was a birth into a life of weakness.
The second time he was born from the grave – “the first born from the dead” – into the glory of heaven and the throne of God”.
This letter (1st Corinthians) was written to a Church in ancient Corinth.
• Corinth was a Greek city, 40 miles away from Athens.
• Corinth and Athens were very much like Edinburgh and Glasgow today.
• Athens was the University city where the philosophers lived, and art festivals were held.
• Corinth was a bustling port.
• Greek philosophy was the background of Corinth’s beliefs.
• And the Greeks did not believe in the resurrection' of the dead.
• One Epicurean epitaph read (student of the Greek philosopher Epicurus.):
• ‘Non fui, fui, non-sum, non curo’ (‘I was not; I was I am not; I do not care’)
• That belief was so dominant that when the apostle Paul had first preached at Athens.
• (Read about it in Acts chapter 17 verse 32).
• They listened until he mentioned the resurrection of Christ,
• Then some of those listening actually laughed at him!
• They mocked him!
In New Testament times:
• Most Greek philosophers considered the human body a prison,
• And they welcomed death as deliverance from bondage.
• This sceptical attitude had somehow invaded the church and Paul had to face it head-on.
• So, in this chapter Paul dealt with the subject of ‘resurrection’ by answering 4 basic questions.
• Question 1: Are the Dead Raised? (That is answered in verses 1-19).
• Question 2: When are the dead raised? (That is answered in verses 20-28).
• Question 3: Why are the dead raised? (That is answered in verses 29-34 & 49-58).
• Question 4: How are the dead raised? (That is answered in verses 35-49).
This morning I want us to look at the glory of Christ’s resurrection:
• And that overlaps the first question Paul answers in this chapter:
• Are the Dead Raised? (verses 15:1-19)
• Now although the Christians at Corinth denied the resurrection of their own bodies,
• They did believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ,
• So, on this point the apostle Paul starts to build his argument.
• He presented three proofs to assure his readers that Jesus Christ,
• Had indeed had been raised from the dead.
• And later he will teach in this chapter,
• If Christ was physically raised from the dead so will all who believe in him.
PROOF #1 - THEIR SALVATION (vs 1-2).
“Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word, I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.”
In verse 1 the apostle Paul describes a three-fold process in conversion:
(1). THERE IS ALWAYS A SOURCE OF KNOWLEDGE.
• “I preached to you”.
• That vehicle may be a preacher, or maybe a Christian simply witnessing.
• It may be a Bible that has been read or may be some other Christian literature,
• But knowledge must be transmitted.
• Christianity is a taught religion; the gospel needs to be proclaimed and explained.
(2). THERE IS ALWAYS A RECEIVER.