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October 2, 2016




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SUBJ: They mysterious manner of our resurrection in that it defies all human logic and the necessity of the change that is to be effected in that there can be no compatibility with flesh and blood!

AIM: That we might be emboldened in the work of the Lord while we live in joyous anticipation of our promised change.

INTR: We come to the end of this lengthy chapter with a celebration of victory over those things that remain as the certain end of the unregenerate.
1. In the preceding verses Paul has made much of the distinction of the natural body and the that which shall be like Christ’s glorious body.
2. It is important to us that we see that a drastic change has taken place in regeneration and the finality of that change will come with the receiving of a body that will enable full harmony with the divine persons and be absent of the hindrances we face now.
3. A word of warning is to be noted here in that many are completely fascinated with the idea of rapture and therefore attempt to romanticize the event while missing the reason it must occur.

THESIS: The promise of the resurrection is most precious to all who love His appearing and it is well that we think often upon the prospect and so we are encouraged in the work of the Lord wherein we discover the foundation of our hope.

I. The necessity of transformation (v. 50)
1. Having described in some detail the distinctions Paul now makes a matter of fact statement which should be the obvious conclusion of all who read and especially all who know Christ.
2. It is here that we would pause to consider the nature of the Kingdom and especially that it is
1) Eternal even as is He whose Kingdom it is; and it is thus no home for that which perishes,
2) And it lacks the ability to facilitate a Kingdom life.
3) And so we must counter the thought of many that heaven is a continuation of our present state without the problems.
3. Literally, corruption cannot become incorrupt.

II. The necessity of the mystery (vv. 51-53)
1. It is important that all know that this is the physical manifestation of the Gospel mystery: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: Colossians 1:27
2. In that the first is all of grace and is a sovereign, mysterious work of the Spirit it follows that the final transition, though visible should be remote from any human input.
3. Christ and others spoke of the last trump, which may be figurative of the announcement of His appearing. In any event two things happen:
1) The dead to be raised incorruptible (all that has been done to earthly bodies negated)
2) And we shall be changed
3) All instantly – no process invoked here!
4. Nothing perishes in the economy of the grace of God and so (v. 53)
1) We with a perishable body must have it changed to the imperishable and
2) This mortal (subject to death) must put on immortality (full identity with the Lord as in Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen. 1 Timothy 6:16

III. The necessity of celebration (vv. 54-56)
1. The thought of necessary celebration rests in two things:
1) The first is the fact that victory over the last enemy of the Lord’s people and
2) The fact that a prophecy will have been fulfilled: He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the LORD hath spoken it. Isaiah 25:8.
2. While all here looks to future it is a present reality to all who believe in that there exists with them a vital union with Christ who has raised.
3. It is almost as it the Apostle taunts the adversary who has lost his only hope of destruction.
1) In vv. 55-56 we encounter another quote from an Old Testament prophet: I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from mine eyes. Hosea 13:14
2) By implication Paul declares the sting of death taken away in this victory and we consider”
i. The awful prospect of dying in one’s sins: I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins. John 8:24
ii. That the strength of sin is the Law relates to us the seriousness of being found outside the grace of God – the Law is not sinful; rather it is holy and violation of the infinitely holy requires the infinite consequence at death – debt paid in full!

IV. The necessity of perseverance (vv. 57-58)
1. These assurances give impetus to the endeavors of the believers who are assured of the outcome.
1) The victory was given us at the resurrection of Christ from the dead – the victory over the sting of death, and all which the world, the flesh and the devil conspire to inflict.
2) It is transferred as well into the life of anticipation of His return.
2. So then we have every reason to:
1) Be steadfast and stand strong in the faith of God’s elect and the Gospel Promise who is Christ our Lord.
2) Be unmovable in the confidence we have in Him and that in the face of the turmoil that surrounds us.
3) Be aggressive in the pursuit of the work of the Lord in that all is done in His Name and
4) Be assured that nothing done in the Lord is in vain!