Summary: This is the week 3 message of This is Love. Explains how we are a New Creation.
Title: Week 3 This is Love – New Creation
Theme: Show how the resurrection brings a new creation.
Text: 1 Corinthians 15
There are many “noted” people in history who has wrestled with this concept of death.
1 Corinthians 15:12-20 Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? (13) But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. (14) And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. (15) Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up--if in fact the dead do not rise. (16) For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. (17) And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! (18) Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. (19) If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable. (20) But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.
I want us to go back to 1 Corinthians 15 and review what Paul is saying about the resurrection. Some of the Corinthians were dealing with this idea of the resurrection from the dead. There were some Jews (Sadducees) and philosophers of the day who didn’t believe that there was a resurrection.
From Wiersbe Commentary on 1 Corinthians 15:47 - 57
Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychiatry, wrote: “And finally there is the painful riddle of death, for which no remedy at all has yet been found, nor probably ever will be.” Yet, Christians have victory in death and over death! Why? Because of the victory of Jesus Christ in His own resurrection. Jesus said (after speaking of His death and preparation for us said in John 14:19, “Because I live, you shall also” (Joh_14:19).
Paul brings out some key points for Christians if the resurrection is not true:
1. Their preaching was in vain (v.14) - “vain” empty of purpose, devoid of truth
2. Their faith was in vain (v.14) - “vain” empty of purpose, devoid of truth, which is no faith at all
3. The apostles were false witnesses (v.15) - although over 500 people witnessed the resurrection, although historians have shown that the historical resurrection is true yet still some chose to doubt.
4. The Corinthian believers were still in their sins (v.17) – we talked about this this first day, the resurrection means the forgiveness of sins.
1 Corinthians 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption.
5. The believers who died in Jesus have perished (v.18) – the ones who have went on before is just dead with no hope. – perish – destroy
6. The Christians who placed their hope in Christ were of all people to be pitied (v.19)
1 Corinthians 15:19 If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.
1 Corinthians 15:20 But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.
CEV 1 Corinthians 15:20 But Christ has been raised to life! And he makes us certain that others will also be raised to life.
Romans 8:10-11 But Christ lives in you. So you are alive because God has accepted you, even though your bodies must die because of your sins. (11) Yet God raised Jesus to life! God's Spirit now lives in you, and he will raise you to life by his Spirit.
Why is the resurrection so important?
It gives us hope that we should also be changed.
1 Corinthians 15:51-58 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed-- (52) in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. (53) For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. (54) So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory." (55) "O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?" (56) The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. (57) But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (58) Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.