Wasn’t the tone of Paul’s close to Chapter 15 simply invigorating? Even though Paul did a brilliant job explaining the promise of resurrection, it’s still something no one has done, except Jesus. He has led the way and we simply wait our turn. We wait for our glorious transformation.
Whether we have already died or are still alive when Jesus returns, we will still rise with Jesus and receive the full transformation. As Paul said, “let me reveal to you a wonderful secret.” Who doesn’t like to be in on a great secret? I can remember how hard it was to keep the secret I had arranged for a surprise 50th birthday party for my husband David. It was quite the elaborate event with lots of moving parts to make it work. Nothing near the incredible, miraculous secret Paul talked about for those who will skip past death.
Have you ever thought about what your resurrection body will look like? I have, but I can’t even begin to imagine. I like how Paul describes it. The example of a seed planted in the ground is a genius analogy. But what really got me was “Then God gives it the new body he wants it to have.” God’s creation is so amazing to witness a simple seed turning into a magnificent flowering bush. Exactly what God intended!
I think my resurrection body is going to be like that. It’s going to look exactly how God wants me to look. And my new body won’t have aches and pains or ever grow old and die. I remember thinking about this text when my mom died years ago. Her earthly body had been ravaged by the lingering effects of having polio as a child and then by cancer before she died. I knew she was in for a treat when she received her resurrection body! We all have that to look forward to.
There are some challenging concepts going on in this reading, do you agree? But I love when God challenges me to listen. It’s easy when we find ourselves reading through familiar passages that we almost skim over them. This passage is not one of those we can (or should) skim over.
We’re talking our future here. We’re talking about God’s majesty over everything. That’s a lot for 9 verses! I’m finding this passage especially comforting in light of all the chaos going on around the world. Doesn’t it give you some peace to know God’s got it all under control?
Have you ever been an athlete training for a big game or sporting event? It wasn’t until I was in my fifties that I really understood the intense discipline it takes athletes to prepare. I thought being a kickboxing instructor had been the epitome of my athleticism until my husband and I found a karate dojo in our new town. We began training for our black belt certification, and I’ll never forget the grueling four-hour test of my strength, will, and endurance.
Paul’s talk of running a race and being disciplined in training brought all those memories back for me. It’s also helpful to note that Paul’s original audience would have been very familiar with a sporting event, much like the Olympics, which was held every two years in Corinth called the Isthmian Games. Paul’s words would have been very powerful because of this association.
Jezebel had to be the vilest woman in the Bible. Her husband, King Ahab, was also evil, but he met his demise years earlier. Jezebel was the daughter of a foreign king who made it her life mission to have all of Israel worshipping her god, Baal.
Jezebel’s life is an interesting story of how a pagan queen became the villain of God’s people. One might applaud her for her commitment; however, it was hugely misguided. Imagine if she had been that determined to bring the people to repentance and to then follow the LORD! She had the financial means as well as the royal authority to get attention.