1 Corinthians 15
The last fact of the "spiritualities" is the resurrection, and the apostle first gives the proof of the resurrection of Christ. His final proof was his own experience.
It is evident that there were some in the Corinthian Church who were holding rationalistic views and denying resurrection. To deny resurrection is, of course, to deny Christ's resurrection, and to do this is to do away with Christianity. If Christ rose not, then the apostolic testimony concerning God is false, for that has been that He raised up Jesus. If that testimony is false, then also are the doctrines of the forgiveness of sins and the ultimate salvation of men. The further result is that those who have fallen asleep in Christ, that is, who have passed away in quiet confidence, resting their souls on Him, have perished.
The suppositions are swept aside by the apostle's, "But now." "But now," seeing that men are loosed from sins, and that all the other facts are thereby demonstrated, the foundation truth of Christ's resurrection is absolutely demonstrated.
Having dealt with all the glorious issues of the resurrection, the apostle's argument turns to the manner of resurrection. Two things are certain. These two matters he argues at length: first, that there will be continuity of personality in resurrection; and, second, that there will be a difference in the risen one.
The ultimate injunction of the epistle should be read in connection with the fundamental proposition (1 :9). To understand the meaning of this injunction aright we should carefully inquire what the work of the Lord is. His work, as He Himself clearly declared, is to seek and save the lost. That, then, is the work of the Church. In this work we are called to steadfastness, that is, continuity and perseverance and immovableness, that is, steadfastness even in spite of opposition; and to be always abounding that is, to overflowing service more than the mere observance of duty.
the Week of Proper 20 / Ordinary 25