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 (Manna 17)
The Final Resurrection
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I.  Physical Resurrection

When Eutychus fell from the third storey, the multitude thought that he was dead. But Paul embracing him said, “Do not be alarmed, for his life (soul) is in him” (Ac 20:9—10). Thus, when the soul leaves the body, the person is dead. James said, “For as the body apart from the spirit is dead,” (Jas ). It follows therefore that when the soul rejoins the body, the person is resurrected physically. The Bible reveals that alter Elijah had stretched himself upon the child, “the soul of the child came to him again and he lived”. This is physical resurrection. There are many such incidents in the New Testament (Lk 7:12-15, -55 Jn 11:38-44; Ac 9:36—41) and the Old Testament (1 Kgs 17:17—23; 2 Kgs 4:32-37). However, these people eventually died as any other man because their resurrected body were still physically of flesh and blood.

II. Spiritual Resurrection

            The result of sin is spiritual death. God commanded Adam saving, “You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day you eat of it you shall die” (Gen 2:17).

But after Adam had eaten the fruit he continued to live for 930 years (Gen 5:3—5). This does not mean that the word of God was not fulfilled. God was referring to spiritual death. In similar vein, Paul said that the gentiles were “alienated from the life of God” (Eph ).

Spiritual resurrection happens at baptism. Because spiritual death is brought about by sin, when sin is forgiven, spiritual life is resurrected (Ac , ). Thus, baptism is “the washing of regeneration” (Tit 3:5). In baptism, one dies with the Lord, is buried and is resurrected with the Lord (Rom 6:3, 4). Paul in his epistle to the Colossians said, “You were buried with him iii baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.” (Col 2:12).

III.         The Final Resurrection

            The final resurrection will occur at the Second Advent of Christ. It is our greatest hope. All those who are part of this final resurrection will never die again but will live forever with the Lord (1 Thess —17).

a.  The Old Testament Concept of the Final Resurrection

(i)       “The dead shall live, their bodies shall rise. O dwellers in the dust, awake and sing for joy!” (Is 26:19).

(ii)     “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” (Dan 12:2).

b.  The New Testament Concept of The Final Resurrection

(iii)     “The tombs also were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised a nil coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many.” (Mt 27:52, 53).

(iv)    “But when they went in they did not find the body. While they were perplexed about this, behold two men stood by them in dazzling apparel ... the men said to them, ‘Why do you seek the living among he dead. He is not here, but has risen.” (Lk 24:3-6).

(v)     “So she ran, and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved and said to them, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they had laid him.” (Jn 20:2).

(vi)   “They said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?’ She said to them, ‘Because they have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.’” (Jn 20:13).

(vii)   “Lo! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all he changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. For this perishable nature must put on the imperishable, and this mortal nature must put on immortality.” (1 Cor ).

(viii)“So that he may establish your hearts unblamable in holiness before our God and Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.” (1 Thess 3:13).

(ix)    “For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.” (1 Thess 4:14).

IV.          The Form  And Substance Of The Final Resurrection

a.  Form of Christ after His resurrection:

            “Saying this, she turned round and saw Jesus standing, but did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek?’ Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, ‘Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Mary’. She turned and said to him in Hebrew, ‘Rabboni!’ (which means teacher).” (Jn 20:14—16).

            “Jesus said, ‘Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some’ ... The disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord!’ When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his clothes, for he was stripped for work, and sprang into the sea.” (Jn 21:6-7).

The form of Christ after His resurrection was somewhat different from that before He died but perceptibly unique to Him.

b.  Substance of Christ after His resurrection:

            “On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them ...“ (Jn 20:19).

            “When he saw at the table with them, lie took the bread and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to them. And their eyes were opened and they recognized him; and he vanished out of their sight.” (Lk 24:30—31).

Jesus after His resurrection could enter an enclosed room without opening the door. He could also suddenly vanish out of sight. Therefore, the resurrected Lord was not physical in substance. However, as God, he could materialize himself.

            “As they were saying this, Jesus himself stood among them. Rut they were startled and frightened, and sup— posed that they saw a spirit. And he said to them, ‘Why are you troubled, and why do questionings rise in your hearts? See my hands and my feet, that it is 1 myself; handle me, and see; for a spirit has no flesh and bones as you see that I have.’ And while they still disbelieved for joy, and wondered, he said to them, ‘Have you anything here to eat?’ They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate before them.” (Lk 24:36-—43),

c.  Form and substance after the final resurrection:

            “So is it with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable, what is raised is imperishable. It is sown in dishonour, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power. It is sown a physical body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a physical body, there is also a spiritual body.”

Thus, in the final resurrection, Christians will be changed to another form and substance. Like Jesus’. This form will be different from the physical form hut perceptibly unique to the power; and the substance will be spiritual.

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