31 Jul 2022

The Resurrection Body [1Corinthians 15:35-49]


"Should the bodies of Christians be buried or cremated after death? " "What happens to Christians who have passed away already? " "Is the resurrected body physical or ethereal? " These are some frequently asked questions regarding the resurrection and the body. Paul teaches that the resurrection body is formed after death. Death is no hindrance to the resurrection. In fact, it is the process or path to the resurrection. He also teaches that the resurrected body is very different from the natural body. He lists 4 ways this is so. He also shows how this new resurrected body suitably represents us as the people of Jesus.



Sermon Transcript

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Today, back to 1st Corinthians, chapter 15.

I'm now 46 years old, you wouldn't say that I'm very old, neither can you say that I'm very young. And in recent years whenever I am on the road and I have to look at my phone, I would have to first of all lower my glasses and peer over the top of my glasses, because not only do I have myopia that requires glasses, I also have presbyopia. I can't see very clearly when it's too near myself.

I'm aging, I'm getting old, there's this magic number 40, when you hit 40, your eyes get this presbyopia. I also recently have knee pains, probably playing badminton too much, and so when I go on the stairs up and down, sometimes I feel the pain and it feels like it's gonna buckle. Not that good a sign!

So perhaps, some of you struggle with your body like I do, maybe you struggle with hair loss, huh, maybe you struggle with wrinkles, maybe you struggle with some diseases, some breakdowns, some joint problems, constipation and ... and you wish that things were to just go back to what it used to be when you were younger.

Hey, let me tell you a piece of good news, alright. You will soon ... well, soon is relative but you will soon receive a major upgrade of your body. A real major upgrade when Jesus comes back for His people, because that's what you will receive at the resurrection of the saints when Jesus comes.

This is what 1st Corinthians 15 has been dealing with. Paul began with this I suppose, response to a question some people may have — are you sure that there is such a thing called the resurrection from the dead? [1 Cor 15:12]

And so, Paul in verses 1 to 11 sets out to prove the resurrection of Jesus Christ. He tells them that this is a very serious issue that they are questioning, because if you do not believe that there is any resurrection from the dead, then Jesus did not rise from the dead and if Jesus didn't rise from the dead, He is not your Savior, and you will still be in your sins.

But He also went on to say that the resurrected Christ is real, because at least six groups of people saw Him. And one group was at least 500 over people, and many are still alive at the time of writing. So Paul is saying, "You could check with us, you can, you can check with me, Jesus did rise from the dead!"

And so if Jesus did rise from the dead, verses 12 to 34 says, if Jesus is risen, so will you. Because He's your King, He rose victorious over death, He will lead His people victorious also over death. He's like the firstfruits, He is the first to be resurrected in this way, and therefore He will lead others also in the same path. There is a promise of more to come!

So, Paul anticipates a further question, "Someone will ask ..." in verse 35, "... How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?" Perhaps they are stumped with this human impossibility when they see a rotting corpse, when they see a decaying body, they are wondering to themselves how in the world can there be a resurrection from this mangled mess, from this rotting body?

So, Paul here in the verses that we have read will describe the resurrection body, that's what we're going to look at. In essence, Paul talks about three things. So coming back to the question — what kind, how are the dead raised and with what kind of body do they come? Three things I'd like us to take note in the verses before us.

[1] Formed After Death
Number one, the resurrection body is first of all formed after death.

Now, we do read in 1st Thessalonians 4 that not everyone will die and rise again, because if Jesus comes at a point of time where there are Christians alive, these people will also receive the resurrection body, although they'll receive it after those who have died. So, it's very interesting! Nevertheless, the point Paul is making here is the resurrection body is formed after death.

He says, "You foolish person! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies." [1 Cor 15:36] Perhaps they asked this question in a sarcastic way, maybe they ask this as a kind of excuse for them not to believe in the resurrection. So Paul reserved some strong words — you foolish person. But he then gives an agricultural example, he says, "What you sow does not come to life unless it dies." [1 Cor 15:36]

So if you want a plant to grow, you sow a seed, but that seed does not become a plant unless the seed breaks down in the soil, it dies according to human observation. So, if I want a bean sprout, I take a green bean, I place it in the soil, water it and after a while I won't get to see the green bean, it kind of breaks up. And it amazingly, when after it dies, the seedling will emerge and a plant grows.

And so Paul says in effect, "You are very concerned about this dying, you think that it's a barrier for God, it's a hindrance. But no, look at nature! Death is just a process, it's not a problem, God can form the resurrection body from the dead."

So, this is the very first point, the resurrection body is formed after death. That's simple!

[2] Formed Different
Then he goes on to say that, "The resurrection body is formed after death in a very different way from the body that we have today.

So, this is a brand new, major upgrade kind of body. It's still your body by the way, it's still you, but it's going to be dramatically different. He goes on to say, "And what you sow is not the body that is to be, but the bare kernel, perhaps of wheat and or some other grain." [1 Cor 15:37]

So, the logic here is — the same plant will ... let's put it this way, let's say you want bean sprout, you want a nice bean sprout. To get a nice big bean sprout, you don't sow a small bean sprout. The ... the thing that you sow is not the body that is to be you, if you want bean sprout, you sow a green bean. So, if you want to have the resurrection body, you need not imagine it to be the exact same as what you have today, they are totally different.

Just ... just think for example, an acorn. An acorn is very small, actually, but when you sow it into the ground, and it takes root and it blossoms and it grows, over time this small acorn gives rise to a giant oak tree. Very different! So, the resurrection body Paul is saying will be very different from your current natural body, just like in nature.

Not only that, he says, "But God gives it a body as He has chosen, and to each kind of seed its own body." [1 Cor 15:38]
So, not only is the future seedling and plant different from the original seed in appearance, different plants have different bodies, different appearances. God does not have a problem with variety!

Hey, you don't have to worry God cannot form another body anymore. No, God is super creative! Different bodies for different plants. And not only in the plant kingdom, he goes to the animal kingdom and to the human example, "For not all flesh is the same, but there is one time for humans, another kinds of animals, another for birds and another for fish." [1 Cor 15:39]

See, God is very creative! No problem for Him - different for different creatures! And if you're still not convinced, he says, "Let me bring you to the stars, let me bring you to the moon. Let me bring you to outer space." Because he says in verse 40, "There are heavenly bodies and earthly bodies, but the glory of the heavenly is of one kind, and the glory of the earthly is of another." [1 Cor 15:40]

Now, Paul is not here speaking about aliens, he's not talking about angels, because verse 41 tells us it's about the stars. Different bodies for different stars — there's one for the sun, there's one for the moon, there's one for the different kinds of more distant stars and the star differs from star in glory.

And so the point here is — the resurrection body will be very different from our current natural body and you don't have to worry God cannot find one suitable version for you. So, so it is with the resurrection of the dead. The summary thus far is — the resurrection body is going to be very different. Just as God made different bodies for seeds, so the seed and the body looks different, He has also made different bodies for different plants and for humanity and for animals and for stars. And so, the resurrection body will be different, there is no difficulty for God, whatsoever! That's his point!

How different is this resurrection? "Alright, okay, I get it, Jason. You're saying that death is no barrier for God, it's just part of the process, correct? You're saying that the resurrection body will be very different from our natural body." I say, "That's correct!" But what difference will there be? What are the differences between the resurrection body and our current body?"

Well, Paul gives you 4 characteristics. First of all, "What is sown is perishable." [1 Cor 15:42] This body that you have today will break down, it will die, you will die one day, your body will be gone one day. This body does not last forever, but, "The body that will be raised is imperishable." [1 Cor 15:42] It is invincible, it is if I may use, immortal. It is imperishable!

Second characteristic or difference is that, "This natural body is sown in dishonor." [1 Cor 15:43] In other words, there's some ugliness, there's some disfigurement perhaps in this body, but "The body that is raised is glorious." [1 Cor 15:43] It is beautiful, it is splendid, it is flawless!

This body we have thirdly is sown in weakness. [1 Cor 15:43] We fatigue, we get tired, we get sick. This is a weak body but, "The new body is raised in power." [1 Cor 15:43] It will never tire. How cool is that! You will never get tired. You never say, "Wah, I need a massage ah!" "Wah, I really need to prop up my legs!" It is raised in power! You play soccer you can run all day! This is an amazing body!

And fourthly, this is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. [1 Cor 15:44] If there's a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. Now, I want you to know that the "spiritual" here does not mean immaterial, in the sense that it is ethereal, like nothing to touch in that it is not a real physical being. It is, as we'll see later on, but I think the best way to look at the word, "spiritual" is that is supernatural. That's probably the idea Paul wants to communicate.

So Paul says, "Your body you have today and the body you will have in the future when Jesus comes and grants this to His followers will be very different." In what ways? Four ways, as you can see the current body is perishable, this is filled with dishonor, is weak, is natural, but the new body is imperishable, glorious in power and it is supernatural.

So, the summary we have thus far — the resurrection body, they asked, "What is it like? What kind of body will you have?" Paul says, "It will be very different! Is formed after death, and it will be very different from what you have today in that they all possess these four characteristics."

[3] Formed to Distinguish
Thirdly, Paul now then says, "The resurrection body is formed after death, formed different and thirdly, formed to distinguish."

In other words, there is a particular reason why you're going to be given this body. The reason why you're given this kind of body amongst other things is that, this is how you will mark ... you will be marked as belonging to the Man of heaven. The Man of heaven, later on, we'll see is Jesus Christ. So, as Jesus possesses this same kind of body, we will also share with that. And in this we testify, we are a representation of the Man of heaven - Jesus.

So let's look at the logic here, verse 45, "Thus it is written, "The first man Adam came a living being"; the last Adam became a life-giving Spirit." [1 Cor 15:45]

The first phrase here, "Adam became a living being" was a quote from Genesis, chapter 2. So Paul is saying, "You know how man was made, the first man was made? Well, in Genesis, chapter 2:7, "And God formed man out of the dust and breathed into him and he became a living being." So, Adam became a living being out of dust, God formed him out of dust and life began in Adam from then on.

But the contrast is that, the last Adam that is a reference to Jesus, we've already established that the last time, Jesus, who is our last Adam did not just come alive, He was not just born.
He was born, He lived His life, He died and was buried and rose again, and now He has the power to be that life-giving Spirit.

So, he was not merely alive, but now He is a life-giving Spirit.
The Bible tells us in verse 22, "For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive."

You remember Adam lived, he became a living being, but he soon sinned against God, and with his sin, he plunged all of humanity into sin and death. Jesus, however never sinned against God, lived a life of perfect obedience and being the unique God-Man, then gave His life on the cross to pay for our sins. He secured for us salvation and then because of His finished work on the cross, is able to grant life to those who believe upon Him.

So, Jesus now becomes a life-giving Spirit, part of that life-giving work is giving you a new glorified, major upgrade body. That's the contrast! So the Lord Jesus Christ, according to Philippians, chapter 3:20-21, "Will transform our lowly body to be like His glorious body." So that's how we bear His image, same kind of body.

"But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual." [1 Cor 15:46] So Adam first, then Jesus. So, we bear this perishable body first, then later on when Jesus comes, this spiritual, glorified, powerful, flawless body.

"The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven." [1 Cor 15:47] So, "The first man was from earth, a man of dust," this is again a quote, I think from Genesis 2:7, "Then the Lord God from the man of dust from the ground."

Well, a boy, he heard a pastor preached exact same thing, and he went to clarify with the pastor after service. He said Pastor, "Is it true that we are all dust?" The pastor says, "Yes, we are all made of dust. You take away the water content, you are a pile of dust. People came about because it was formed out of dust and when people die, they return to dust."

The ... the boy then said to the pastor, "Pastor, can you come to my house, because if you come to my house and you check under my bed, there's a lot of dust? There must be a lot of people who have come and gone under my bed." That's not exactly wrong, we are a pile of dust, and you can form man, if you're able to out of dust.

But the difference is that, "The second man is from heaven." [1 Cor 15:47] The implication here is that the new body that Jesus has, and the new body that we will have is not going to be from the earth. I think that's made even clearer in the next verse. In other words, the material that is used to make you today, your body today is from here, but the material that is used to make your resurrected body is not from the earth. It's not from this world, it's from heaven.

It's not titanium, it's not vibranium or Adamantium, huh, huh. if you're in Marvel, into marvel. We do not know what the material is called, so let me just call it heavenium. Can? Some heavenly material, it's heavenium, so we will be made, this body will be made of this heavenly material. And when we do that, or when we possess that, "Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heaven." [1 Cor 15:49]

So now when you look at me with a perishable body that is weak, that is breaking down, you belong to Adam, first Adam, but on that day of the resurrection, we will no more bear that image of Adam. We will bear the image of Jesus Christ, who is glorious, powerful, flawless, and we will have a body that speaks exactly the same way.

So the summary of what we have gone through, today's sermon will be short. I think you can tell I'm ... I'm at the end of the exposition already. What or how are the dead raised? And with what kind of body do they come? That's the question that triggered this whole section.

Paul says, "This is no problem for God. Think about the seed. Death is no barrier, it's just a process. This body will be very different, just as God made the seedling different from the seed, and God made different seedlings and plants for different species. God made different bodies for men, God different bodies for animals, God made different bodies for the stars.

This body will be different, in that it is imperishable. Nothing on earth is imperishable, isn't it? Nothing! This body will be glorious, it is flawless. Nothing on earth today is flawless. Even the near flawless fruit, durian sometimes can come 'hung zi' [in Hokkien], not so good. It is powerful, it will never tire and it is supernatural, is made of a different material altogether. Nothing on earth is like this, but your new body will be. That's how cool it will be! So in that sense, we bear the image of the last Adam, Jesus Christ.

Or if you have been following the various sections, I suppose. What kind of body do they come with? It's a body that is formed after death. It's a body that is very different from whatever we can see you today. And it's the body that distinguishes us as the people of Christ. That's how it is!

Well, like I said, exposition done, but there may be some things I like to tie up, if I ... if you allow me to. First thing is I want to address some FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions. Because there are questions about the body, the resurrection body, and even in the way we die, or what happens after we die. It's not often that we get to look at the resurrection body as a topic, as a whole segment of Scripture, so I'll take this opportunity to address some of these questions.

First question is: Does this influence the burial versus cremation debate?

Now, it used to be quite a fierce debate, at least before I was a Christian or soon after I became a Christian, I realized that churches actually struggled with this question — when one of our members die, can we cremate the body? Because there are churches who said, "You can only bury the body."

But it becomes quite a tricky proposition here in Singapore because not easy to find a small piece of land to bury you also, you know. And we don't bury vertical, we bury horizontal, so the square meter, quite a lot eh! And Chua Chu Kang I tell you, I can see the ... whenever I go to the ... I can see, eh, there's our member or that was our previous, is that close, you know? Not much space left and it's expensive.

So people ask, "Is it okay to cremate?" Some people feel that it is not proper to have cremation because they say, "The Old Testament patriarchs when they die, they're all buried, nobody cremates them." Some people say that, "It is not appropriate to cremate because you may convey that sense you don't believe in the resurrection, therefore you do away with the body." Well, some may even think that, "Once you cremate, very hard to form you back again leh! All the ashes fly over the place, how to gather them back, very hard!"

I ... I always say to them, "Actually, you know, none of the molecules you have in your body are really yours forever. It comes from food you eat, which is not you in the first place and you breathe out and you 'pang sai' [defecation in Hokkien] or whatever. The old one all go out also, there's a recycling process, renewal process all the time, so there's no real atom or molecule that is tagged "Jason Lim", it it actually passes to you and so on and so forth.

Well, I ... I give you an example. There's a story told of this Baptist pastor, Roger Williams, if I'm not wrong. He died and was buried near an apple tree, he was placed in a coffin, he was placed near an apple tree. And one day they decided to exhume, take out that casket, take out the body and to bury him somewhere else. But as they opened up the ground, they realized that the roots of the apple tree have penetrated the coffin, penetrated his skull, run through his spine, bifurcated through the legs.

In other words, the apple tree has completely sucked in the nutrients from the body of the former Roger Williams. And all that nutrient has gone into the tree and into the apples and you have eaten the apple. Not ... not you lah, but other people have eaten apple! So, Roger Williams is not into many animals and many people perhaps! How do you form Roger Williams again?

Well, I suppose 1st Corinthians 15 helps you understand that the new body that you're going to have, is not going to be from any of the elements that are on this earth. So, burial does not preserve the elements needed for God to create the resurrection body, don't worry about it.

I say to my family, "If I die, just burn this body up, otherwise so big, don't know where to put. Just burn this body up and then spray, or not, not spray lah, but just pour it into the drain or whatever there you can find, just get rid of it. That is not me, I am with Christ! That was just my ... my ... my tent. And if I have clothes, just give them to Salvation Army or throw them away, it doesn't matter, I'm ... I'm ... I'm not going to possess them anymore!"

Now, in Gospel Light, we therefore do not say that we hold burial only position, we do believe that it is proper for you, if you choose to, to be buried. It's also perfectly fine, if you should choose cremation, that's not an issue, that does not hinder resurrection in any sense, in any way. Okay?

Second question is — well, what is the current state of those who have died? So they have, Jesus is not yet here? He has not yet returned. So if you die today, where would you go? Or what happens to you?

Well, the Bible tells me that believers who die are now with Christ, Philippians 1:23 is clear, "And Christ Himself is at the right hand of the Father" for example, Ephesians 2. So the tricky part is whilst we are, or they are in with Christ right now in the heavens, in the presence of God, they will only receive their resurrected bodies when Jesus returns. So this is what we would say, the intermediate state, not the final state but intermediate state.

You are with Christ, but you still do not have this new suit or new body. What that feels like, I have no clue. I've never been there! But next time, I probably would know and I can't tell you, but you will find out yourself if you're there, alright?

Number three — what about people resurrected before Jesus was resurrected? What ... what happens to them?

Were there people resurrected before Jesus was resurrected? There were! There were people who were resurrected during Elijah and Elijah's ministry. Then you remember Jairus' daughter, and of course, the most famous is Lazarus himself.
And there were even people who were resurrected when Jesus died, you remember that? The tombs were broken up and people came back alive. Now, they were therefore people who were resurrected before Jesus Himself was resurrected, what happens to them?

Now, as far as we know, there is no indication at all in the Bible that these people were resurrected with the same kind of body that we are looking at today — the imperishable, glorious, powerful, supernatural ones. So, they were not given the same bodies like Jesus, the body Jesus had. So, I think they died again, they died, they were resurrected, and they will die again.

And it's also important to know that they did not lead others to or cannot lead others to resurrection like Jesus, Himself is able to. Jesus is a life-giving Spirit, the rest of the people here, they are not. So in that sense, though, they were resurrected before Jesus, they were not the firstfruits, in that not because of them, is there a promise of more to come, and they are not the life-giving Spirit, but they were resurrected before Christ. Alright, I hope that clarifies for some of you.

The fourth question I have is — is the resurrected body, physical or just ethereal, like ... like a specter? You see something but when you want to touch it, nothing one, like hologram. Is the resurrected body a hologram, an ethereal being?

No, it is a physical being, clearly. And the reason is because, think about Jesus, he ate and His disciples touched Him, and there were even marks on His side that remained with Him, John 20:27. So there is a sense of discontinuity, in that His new body is glorious, imperishable, powerful, made up of a totally different substance, but there is nonetheless a kind of continuity, that it is still His body and there were even remnants of His sacrifice for His people.

Now, some of you may say, "But I hear that Jesus can pass through walls." Probably, because there is a story, there's an episode, where even though the doors and windows were closed, Jesus appeared right in the midst of them. Whatever you take it to be, I think the evidence gathers up to tell us it is not an ethereal specter or hologram, but it's a real physical body. And there's a sense of continuity, and also discontinuity of this resurrection body.

I'm almost done, but I just want to end with two simple implications or applications for you and for me. You say, "Well, Jason, this is all about future, don't bother lah!" Now, I say not that you will change anything, your body will not change right now, but still knowing this should have some implication for us.

Implications/Applications: Word of Comfort
So the first thing I like to say, is a word of comfort.

Some of you do not struggle with minor things like wrinkles and hair loss. Some of you struggle with real struggles of life. Some of you are handicapped, you are physically disadvantaged, you can't walk properly, you can't speak properly, you may be wrestling with cancer, you face disfigurement, and it is heartbreaking. Some of you may be born blind, some of you may be born with impairment of your eyesight, impairment of your hearing. And it is not easy to go through life like this.

But I want to tell you that this is not your life forever, this is just a little vapor, the Bible says, "Because what is to come is eternal, and you will not be forever disabled, you will not be forever blind, you will not be forever deaf, you will not be forever sick. You'll have a body that is imperishable, glorious, powerful. And I hope that brings comfort to you, God will bring all your pains and sufferings to an end one day, even the physical ones when Jesus returns.

Implications/Applications: Word of Caution
The second thing I'd like to end off with is that this should give us a word of caution.

We live in a day and age where people are very obsessed and fascinated about their looks, their body, their appearance. It pops up in Facebook, Instagram, Tik Tok. It's all about how slim you are, what ... what ... what ... what waists, uh, and how big your muscles are.

Well, I'm not saying that it is absolutely wrong to lift weights or exercise and to keep fit. Uh, I suppose there is legitimacy to looking decent, but I think, I'm cautioning against an obsession over it, as if this is your goal in life to be Miss Universe, your goal in life is to be Mr. Man Hunt.

I think your goal is very misplaced. If you understand that this body is perishable. At the end of the day, when you die, you become dust. Okay, you were a very muscular dust but you're still dust! What's the point? Huh, what? Is still dust at the end of the day! So, I hope that whilst bodily exercise does profit a little while, godliness is what we should pursue, serving God is what we should pursue.

This body is given not for you to show-off, this body is not for you to flaunt. This body, according to Romans 6, these members, these parts of the body are given so that you may yield them as instruments of righteousness. So, one day you'll receive a whole new body, and even if we were to lose this body, we are going to lose parts of this body because of the service to Christ. Hey, you will never be the loser, God will give you a major upgrade, a totally perfect one in time to come!

Well, all this is possible not because you earned it, you can't even ... to be fair for those who are losing hair, you can't even make your hair grow back, you know? Try as you might, well as ... as far as I know as a doctor, I know that there's no real cure, lah! You can try all the brands in Singapore to help you regain hair but I ... I think from a doctor's point of view, very hard lah!

So if you think about it, it's so hard to grow a few strands of hair ah, do you think you can earn your resurrection body by yourself? Oh no, it is a gift! This is a gift because of the perfect work of Jesus Christ our Lord. I want to encourage you today to realize that all these wonderful things we are talking about, when we are fitted with this new body to serve God in the kingdoms to come, in an ages to come, it is all because Jesus paid it all on the cross.

He died for our sins, He saved us from our alienation from God, He brings us back to God, and He fits us out in this major upgrade body, so that wow, with this tireless, glorious body, we can serve one another and serve God forevermore! This is what Jesus has done, this is the plan of God from the beginning.

Now, it glorifies God but it is also supremely joyous and satisfactory ... satisfying for all of us, because that's what we are made to do — to know Him, to serve Him, to worship Him. On that day, everything will be exactly what it should be.

If you're here today, and you do not know Jesus, I hope that you will realize, there is only one way for men to be saved. "In Adam ..." the Bible says, "... we all die." In Adam, we are all sinful, and we all will be judged for our sin. No matter where you stay. No matter your socio economic status. No matter how moral you have tried to live your life, at the end of the day before the eyes of the Holy God, we are all sinners. In Adam, we all die.

The solution — in Christ, we shall be made alive. There is only One who can save you from your sin. There's only one way for you to be saved, and that is Jesus. He Himself said, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, no man comes to the Father but by Me." And He is the resurrection and the life, He proved it!

So confronting you is this choice — would you choose to be in Adam or would you choose to be in Christ? There's only these two ways, and I pray you will be wise to turn from sin and to follow Jesus. And that is the joy that we will have one day, totally renewed, totally saved, totally outfitted with a brand new body, enjoying God, serving Him forevermore.

Let's bow for a word of prayer together.

In the light of what we have learned in 1st Corinthians - the resurrection, Paul will, at the end of this chapter say, "Be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord." And I pray you will be wise to keep this resurrection hope in the forefront of your minds.

Oh yes, we look back to the cross where Jesus died, and His love should motivate us to serve Him. But at the same time, don't just look back and be stuck there, but also look forward. Look forward to the day Jesus will come and He will fit you with this body, where you will never tire, where you will never be sick, when you will be eternally glorious and powerful, and we will be fitted to serve God in a way we are supposed to.

Look forward to that! So look back and look forward, so that from today till the day Jesus comes, we will be always abounding in the work of the Lord. Be steadfast, my friend in ministry, it's not easy to serve God because there will be spiritual opposition. Be immovable, my friends, because there will be circumstances that make it difficult for you. And be zealous, be always abounding in the work of the Lord. Don't just settle to do a little here or there, give of your best to the Master, be always abounding.

Father, we thank You this morning for Your Word and we pray that the truth of Scripture will settle nicely into the depths of our hearts. And like that seed, I pray then, it will break down and release its life-giving power as people obey You. O God, save souls today! How we thank You today, in Adam, we all die but in Christ we shall be made alive. O, draw many to see Christ today, to repent of their sin and believe upon Him!

And I pray for a church that will be so so clear about the resurrection hope, that we will be indeed steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, to Your glory. Thank You, we pray all this in Jesus' Name, Amen.
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