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  • Writer's pictureGODVERSITY

How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?


Have you ever wondered what we will look like in heaven? Here’s a hint from Scripture.

Israel’s Future

The nation of Israel, at the time of Jesus’ earthly arrival, was in eager expectation of the Messiah. They didn’t expect a Messiah to be killed and raised again after three days. They thought the Messiah would come and reign in power and authority over all the nations.

They thought, if Jesus was truly the Messiah, He would cast off the iron yoke of Roman bondage, but that day will come. It just wasn’t in the day the Jews thought. God has His own plan, purpose, and timing in restoring the nation Israel. Think God’s forgotten about Israel today? Think again because the Prophet Isaiah writes down God’s thoughts, asking, “Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb?

Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you” (Isaiah 49:15), and further, God says, “I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me. Your builders make haste; your destroyers and those who laid you waste go out from you” (Isaiah 49:16-17). After Jesus’ kingdom is established here on earth, “It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be lifted up above the hills; and all the nations shall flow to it, and many peoples shall come, and say:

“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.” For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem” (Isaiah 2:2-3), so as you can see, God is not finished with the nation Israel. They will again be a nation of importance, but what happens to us who believe after Jesus comes again? And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above.

Glorified Bodies

It’s hard to imagine while I look at my nearly 65 year old body that someday our bodies will be eternal and we’ll have glorified bodies. Today, it doesn’t look very glorified, but what I don’t see is the Spirit of God Who lives in me and Who lives in every believer. The Apostle Paul shows that our earthly bodies and our glorified bodies will have considerable differences. He anticipated the Corinthian church’s question by writing, “someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come” (1 Cor 15:35), and Paul writes that 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), so the body we have today is nothing like the glory that’s coming.

Paul wrote, “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us” (Rom 8:18). We will then behold the glory and beauty and majesty of Jesus Christ, but we too will have a glorified body, however not everyone will be of the same glory.

Paul explains that these differences will be known after “the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable. It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power. It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body” (1 Cor 15:42-44). A dead body has no power, but a resurrected, glorified body does…and that body will last forever. Daniel speaks of the brilliance of some of the children of God in Daniel 12:2-3 where he wrote that at the resurrection,

“many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.”

Remember that Jesus, after His resurrection, could pass through walls and yet sit and eat a meal with the disciples (John 20:19-26, 21:14-15). I don’t know about passing through walls, but even after we’re glorified, we can still enjoy the simple pleasures of good food while still being in an eternal body. Conclusion

The Apostle John wrote, “Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:2), so we will be like Him, having a glorified body, but not to the same extent of course, and as Daniel wrote, those who save souls will shine like the stars, forever and ever, and stars are exceedingly brilliant, but also those who are wise will likewise shine like the brightness of the sky, or like the sun, as they too will be glorified, but exactly what that looks like today, I can’t tell you. I believe it will vary from person to person, depending on what they did for the Lord while in the body.

Paul says that “each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done” (1 Cor 3:13), so “If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward” (1 Cor 3:14), however, “If anyone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire” (1 Cor 3:15). Jesus says if we are faithful in little, He will entrust us with much (Luke 16:10). Our works for Christ and our desire to be used by God to save souls may determine the glory that each of us will receive, so I know that our present days of sufferings are “not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us” (Rom 8:18). GOD BLESS YOU.


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