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The Good News About Christ
1Now, brothers, I want you to remember the Good News I brought to you. You received this Good News, and you continue strong in it. 2And you are saved by this Good News. But you must continue believing what I told you. If you do not, then you believed for nothing.
3I passed on to you what I received. And this was the most important: that Christ died for our sins, as the Scriptures say; 4that he was buried and was raised to life on the third day as the Scriptures say; 5and that he showed himself to Peter and then to the twelve apostles. 6After that, Jesus showed himself to more than 500 of the believers at the same time. Most of them are still living today. But some have died. 7Then Jesus showed himself to James and later to all the apostles. 8Last of all he showed himself to me—as to a person not born at the normal time. 9All the other apostles are greater than I am. This is because I persecuted the church of God. And this is why I am not even good enough to be called an apostle. 10But God’s grace has made me what I am. And his grace to me was not wasted. I worked harder than all the other apostles. (But I was not really the one working. It was God’s grace that was with me.) 11So then it is not important if I preached to you or if the other apostles preached to you. We all preach the same thing, and this is what you believed.
We Will Be Raised from Death
12It is preached that Christ was raised from death. So why do some of you say that people will not be raised from death? 13If no one will ever be raised from death, then Christ was not raised from death. 14And if Christ was not raised, then our preaching is worth nothing. And your faith is worth nothing. 15And also, we will be guilty of lying about God. Because we have preached about him by saying that he raised Christ from death. And if people are not raised from death, then God never raised Christ from death. 16If the dead are not raised, Christ has not been raised either. 17And if Christ has not been raised, then your faith is for nothing; you are still guilty of your sins. 18And also, those in Christ who have already died are lost. 19If our hope in Christ is for this life only, we should be pitied more than anyone else in the world.
20But Christ has truly been raised from death—the first one and proof that those who are asleep in death will also be raised. 21Death comes to everyone because of what one man did. But the rising from death also happens because of one man. 22In Adam all of us die. In the same way, in Christ all of us will be made alive again. 23But everyone will be raised to life in the right order. Christ was first to be raised. When Christ comes again, those who belong to him will be raised to life. 24Then the end will come. Christ will destroy all rulers, authorities, and powers. And he will give the kingdom to God the Father. 25Christ must rule until God puts all enemies under Christ’s control. 26The last enemy to be destroyed will be death. 27The Scripture says, “God put all things under his control.”# Quotation from Psalm 8:6. When it says that “all things” are put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself. God is the one putting everything under Christ’s control. 28After everything has been put under Christ, then the Son himself will be put under God. God is the One who put all things under Christ. And Christ will be put under God, so that God will be the complete ruler over everything.
29If the dead are never raised, then what will people do who are baptized for those who have died? If the dead are not raised at all, why are people baptized for them?
30And what about us? Why do we put ourselves in danger every hour? 31I die every day. That is true, brothers, just as it is true that I brag about you in Christ Jesus our Lord. 32If I fought wild animals in Ephesus only for human reasons, I have gained nothing. If the dead are not raised, then, “Let us eat and drink, because tomorrow we will die.”# Quotation from Isaiah 22:13; 56:12.
33Do not be fooled: “Bad friends will ruin good habits.” 34Come back to your right way of thinking and stop sinning. I say this to shame you—some of you do not know God.
What Kind of Body Will We Have?
35But someone may ask, “How are the dead raised? What kind of body will they have?” 36Those are stupid questions. When you plant something, it must die in the ground before it can live and grow. 37And when you plant it, what you plant does not have the same “body” that it will have later. What you plant is only a seed, maybe wheat or something else. 38But God gives it a body that he has planned for it. And God gives each kind of seed its own body. 39All things made of flesh are not the same kinds of flesh: People have one kind of flesh, animals have another kind, birds have another, and fish have another. 40Also there are heavenly bodies and earthly bodies. But the beauty of the heavenly bodies is one kind. The beauty of the earthly bodies is another kind. 41The sun has one kind of beauty. The moon has another beauty, and the stars have another. And each star is different in its beauty.
42It is the same with the dead who are raised to life. The body that is “planted” will ruin and decay. But that body is raised to a life that cannot be destroyed. 43When the body is “planted,” it is without honor. But it is raised in glory. When the body is “planted,” it is weak. But when it is raised, it has power. 44The body that is “planted” is a physical body. When it is raised, it is a spiritual body.
There is a physical body. And there is also a spiritual body. 45It is written in the Scriptures: “The first man became a living person.”# Quotation from Genesis 2:7. But the last Adam became a spirit that gives life. 46The spiritual man did not come first. It was the physical man who came first; then came the spiritual. 47The first man came from the dust of the earth. The second man came from heaven. 48People belong to the earth. They are like the first man of earth. But those people who belong to heaven are like the man of heaven. 49We were made like the man of earth. So we will# Some Greek copies read “So let us.” also be made like the man of heaven.
50I tell you this, brothers: Flesh and blood cannot have a part in the kingdom of God. A thing that will ruin cannot have a part in something that never ruins. 51But listen, I tell you this secret: We will not all die, but we will all be changed. 52It will only take a second. We will be changed as quickly as an eye blinks. This will happen when the last trumpet sounds. The trumpet will sound and those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we will all be changed. 53This body that will ruin must clothe itself with something that will never ruin. And this body that dies must clothe itself with something that will never die. 54So this body that ruins will clothe itself with that which never ruins. And this body that dies will clothe itself with that which never dies. When this happens, then this Scripture will be made true:
55“Death, where is your victory?
Death, where is your power to hurt?” Hosea 13:14
56Death’s power to hurt is sin. The power of sin is the law. 57But we thank God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
58So my dear brothers, stand strong. Do not let anything move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord. You know that your work in the Lord is never wasted.