Lesson 30 - Resurrection Body

Lesson 30 - Resurrection Body

The resurrection of Jesus Christ guarantees the believer not only eternal life, but also a glorified resurrection body.  The glorified body of the believer will be like that of Christ.  For those Church Age believers who die before the Rapture occurs, their soul and spirit go into the presence of the Lord. At the Rapture, the soul and spirit are returned to the glorified body. (I Corinthians 15:51-57; II Corinthians 5:1-8; Philippians 3:21; I Thessalonians 4:13-18; I John 3:2)

We can get a glimpse of what our glorified body will be like by looking at Christ’s glorified body.  First, we will be recognizable like Christ was after His Resurrection.  (Luke 24; John 20:26-29)  Christ’s body could be touched (as Thomas did) because His body had flesh and bones. (Luke 24:39-40)  Christ’s body retained the scars of crucifixion. (John 20:25-27) He breathed and carried on conversations with a recognizable voice in His resurrection body. (Luke 24; John 20:26)  Jesus ate food while in His resurrection body. (Luke 24:30,43)  However, His body was unique in that He could walk through closed doors, He was able to disappear and appear, and He could move vertically and horizontally. (Psalms 22:16; Zechariah 12:10; Matthew 28:9-10; Luke 24:17-40; John 20:16-29; Acts 1:9-10)

The resurrection of Jesus Christ coincided with the Jewish Feast of the First Fruits, where a portion of the harvest was gathered first and given to the priest for the blessing of the entire harvest.  This feast pointed to the resurrection of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, and was celebrated three days after the Passover.  Paul writes about “the first fruits” in I Corinthians 15:20-25.  Jesus explained this parable when He described Himself as “the grain of wheat that fell to the ground, and died that it might spring to life and bring forth much fruit.” (John 12:23-24)  Jesus Christ is the representative of the harvest and is a living testimony to God’s sovereignty, which says, “Because I live, you shall live also”.

Christ’s humanity was resurrected, because it was His humanity that died. (Luke 24:39)  It was evidenced by an empty tomb, which was witnessed by His friends, family and followers. (Matthew 28)  Religious leaders attempted to suppress information regarding the resurrection, which gives evidence that they believed He had risen. (Matthew 27:62-66) Jesus Christ is the only person in history to be resurrected (some were resuscitated - arose and later died).  Because of Christ’s resurrection, believers will also be resurrected. (II Corinthians 4:14; Philippians 3:21; I John 3:1-2)

At death, Christ’s body went into the grave (John 19:40-42), His soul went into Paradise (Luke 23:43; Acts 2:27) and His Spirit went into the presence of the Father (Luke 23:46).  It was Christ’s body that resurrected.  His soul came out of Paradise returning to the body, His Spirit came from the presence of the Father returning to the body and He rose bodily from the grave.  He is now at the right hand of the Father. (Hebrews 1:3; I Peter 3:18-22; Romans 1:4, I Thessalonians 1:10) 

There are doctrinal significances that we should note regarding the Resurrection.  Christ’s resurrection indicates the completion of justification. (Romans 4:25)  Jesus Christ becomes our mediator (equal with God and equal with man). (Hebrews 7:25, 9:15; I Timothy 2:5)  It is the “risen Christ” Who becomes our High Priest and establishes the priesthood of the believer.  (Hebrews 10:5,10-14, 7:28; I Peter 2:5-9)  The resurrection of Christ fulfills part of the Davidic Covenant. (Psalms 89:36-37; II Samuel 7:8-16)  Without the resurrection, Christ could not have been glorified and the Holy Spirit could not have been given. (John 7:39)  The Resurrection is the guarantee of Ultimate Sanctification. (I Corinthians 15:20-23; I John 3:1-2; Philippians 3:21)

Ultimate Sanctification

(Philippians 3:20-21)

Verse 20

We still reside in this body while here on earth, but our true home is Heaven.  We are just passing though this life, but our real citizenship is in Heaven.  When Christ returns for us at the Rapture, we will realize Ultimate Sanctification. 

Verse 21

For the believer, there is going to be a change.  Each of us is going to receive a glorified body fashioned after Christ’s body.  This will be an instantaneous change, as we are being “caught up” to meet Christ in the air.

Ultimate sanctification will be a reality for all believers, regardless of the stage of spiritual growth.  Mature and immature believers will receive a glorified body and will spend all of eternity in perfect happiness.  There will, however, be a loss of magnificent rewards and blessings for those that fail to execute the Christian Way of Life.

The Resurrections

According to John 5:28-29, there are going to be two resurrections for mankind.  One resurrection is for believers and the other is for unbelievers.  All Church Age believers receive their resurrection bodies at the Rapture of the Church. (I Corinthians 15:23)

At death, the Church Age believer’s body goes into the grave and his soul and spirit go into the presence of God the Father in an interim body.  (I Thessalonians 4:13-18; II Corinthians 5:8)  At the Rapture, which marks the end of the Church Age, the believer’s soul and spirit enter the resurrection body (John 14:1-3; Philippians 3:20-21; I John 3:1-2; I Corinthians 15:51-57; I Thessalonians 4:15-16)

At death, the Old Testament believer’s body went into the grave and his soul and spirit went into Paradise. (Luke 23:43)  At resurrection, the soul and spirit return into the resurrection body.  This occurs at the second coming of Jesus Christ at the end of the Tribulation. (Mark 13:24-27, 24:27-31)

“Tribulational martyrs” (believers) are technically still part of Old Testament, therefore, their resurrection is the same as the Old Testament believers. (Revelation 20:4-6)  Millennial believers receive their resurrection bodies at the end of the Millennium.

At death, the unbeliever’s body goes into the grave and their soul goes into a compartment of Hades called Torments. (Revelation 20:11-15; Luke 16:19-31)  At resurrection they receive a body of some kind. (John 5:28-29; Matthew 18:8-9)  The soul joins the body and appears before the Great White Throne Judgment. (Revelation 20:11-15)

Hell/Hades

The word “hell” is not found in Scripture.  It is a transliterated word used for the current and final abode of the unbeliever.  The actual place in Scripture commonly referred to as Hell is Hades (Greek) or Sheol (Hebrew).  Both words mean “the lower parts of the earth.”  Jesus Christ holds the keys to Hell and death - a symbol of authority over both. (Revelation 1:18)

Hades was originally made up of three parts:

  1. Tartarus – comes from the Greek word “tartaroo” meaning to incarcerate in eternal torment.  This is the place where fallen angels of Genesis 6 are bound. (II Peter 2:4; Jude 6-7)
  2. Torments – comes from the Greek word “basanos” meaning a touchstone (a flint-like stone used to test gold and silver by rubbing it against them).  This is the place where unbelievers’ souls are awaiting the last judgment. (Luke 16:23, Revelation 20:11-15)
  3. Paradise – This was a place where the believer’s soul and spirit went until Jesus Christ ascended to Heaven. (Luke 16:20-31)

Tartarus is where certain fallen angels are bound.

  1. Fallen angels of Genesis 6 are bound here. (II Peter 2:4)
  2. They are bound because they left heaven (their first estate) (Jude 6)
  3. They disobeyed God in cohabiting with human women. (Genesis 6; Jude 7)
  4. Jesus preached or proclaimed His victory to the fallen angels that they had not been successful in cutting the line of the Messiah. (I Peter 3:19-20)

Torments was apparently enlarged when Paradise was removed by Jesus Christ. (Isaiah 5:14)

Paradise is now located in Heaven.

  1. Paul’s testimony - II Corinthians 12:1-4
  2. Jesus “led captivity captive” (souls and spirits of believers in Paradise) (Ephesians 4:8-10)

The Lake of Fire is the final abode for Satan, fallen angels and all unbelievers.  The Hebrew word “Ge-Hinnom” and the Greek word “Geenna.” are translated Hell in the King James Bible.  Sometimes the word Hell refers to Hades and sometimes to the Lake of Fire, the context determines the correct usage. (Matt. 25:41; Rev. 20)