1 Corinthians 15:35–49 (ESV)
The Resurrection Body
35 But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?” 36 You foolish person! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. 37 And
what you sow is not the body that is to be, but a bare kernel, perhaps of wheat or of some other grain. 38 But God gives it a body as he has chosen, and to each kind of seed its own body. 39 For
not all flesh is the same, but there is one kind for humans, another for animals, another for birds, and another for fish. 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. 41 There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for star differs from star in glory.
42 So is it with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable. 43 It is sown in dishonor; it is raised
in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power. 44 It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. 45 Thus it is
written, “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. 46 But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual. 47 The
first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven. 48 As was the man of dust, so also are those who are of the dust, and as is the man of heaven, so also are those who are of heaven. 49 Just
as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven.
The body—corrupted by sin—declines, decays, and dies. Humanly speaking,
we can extend our lives only by having children, whom we likewise corrupt with our inherited sin. But thanks be to God! He chose to establish a new order for us through Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Jesus resisted all corruption and grants us
His heavenly life.
I pray: Jesus, lead me to respect my body and to regard my funeral like a farmer sowing with resurrection hope. By Your grace, may I and my loved ones
reap a harvest of heavenly life. Amen.
Edward A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 2009), 1976.
1 Corinthians 15:12–34 (ESV)
The Resurrection of the Dead
12 Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 But if there is no
resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. 15 We are even found to be misrepresenting
God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. 17 And
if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. 19 If in Christ we have hope in this life
only, we are of all people most to be pitied.
20 But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of
those who have fallen asleep. 21 For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. 23 But
each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ. 24 Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power.
25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. 26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death. 27 For “God has put all things in subjection
under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him. 28 When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself
will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all.
29 Otherwise, what
do people mean by being baptized on behalf of the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why are people baptized on their behalf? 30 Why are we in danger every hour? 31 I protest, brothers,
by my pride in you, which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die every day! 32 What do I gain if, humanly speaking, I fought with beasts at Ephesus? If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.”
33 Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.” 34 Wake up from your drunken stupor, as is right, and do not go on sinning. For some have no knowledge of God. I say this
to your shame.
The Corinthians take pride in their wisdom, but Paul tears apart their arguments with basic logic and rhetoric. Logic, rhetoric, and even sarcasm have their uses
in preaching and teaching the Gospel. Yet all our powers and wisdom must remain subject to the Lord, who is “all in all.” The Lord refuted sin, death, Satan, and all our foes—not with reason but with acts: His death and resurrection for our
I pray: Victorious Savior, daily put to death my foolish pride and wisdom, and teach me the way of humility and self-sacrifice. In the daily repentance and
renewal of Baptism, may I partake of Your sufferings so that I may partake of Your resurrection. Amen.
Edward A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 2009), 1976.
1 Corinthians 15:1–11 (ESV)
The Resurrection of Christ
15 Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, 2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached
to you—unless you believed in vain.
3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ
died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the
twelve. 6 Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles.
8 Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me. 9 For I am the least of the apostles, unworthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. 10 But
by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. 11 Whether then it was I or they, so
we preach and so you believed.
Because of zeal for more knowledge, the Corinthians have neglected what has first importance: the simple truths and application of the Gospel. How
great is the temptation for us to overlook the Gospel today! A multitude of contemporary issues can crowd out the Gospel of life and forgiveness in Jesus until it grows unclear in our minds. Praise God for the wonderful creeds that our forebears have handed
down across the centuries, which take up Paul’s very words, summarize the Holy Gospel, and etch it into our memories.
I pray: Holy Jesus, You died to take away
my sins and rose to fulfill all the Father’s promises in Scripture. Send now Your Holy Spirit so that by Your grace I may stand in this faith always. Amen.
Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House,
1 Corinthians 14:26–40 (ESV)
then, brothers? When you come together, each one has a hymn, a lesson, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. Let all things be done for building up. 27 If any speak in a tongue, let there be only two or at most three,
and each in turn, and let someone interpret. 28 But if there is no one to interpret, let each of them keep silent in church and speak to himself and to God. 29 Let two or three prophets speak,
and let the others weigh what is said. 30 If a revelation is made to another sitting there, let the first be silent. 31 For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all be
encouraged, 32 and the spirits of prophets are subject to prophets. 33 For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.
all the churches of the saints, 34 the women should keep silent in the churches. For they are not permitted to speak, but should be in submission, as the Law also says. 35 If there is anything
they desire to learn, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church.
36 Or was it from you that the word of God came?
Or are you the only ones it has reached? 37 If anyone thinks that he is a prophet, or spiritual, he should acknowledge that the things I am writing to you are a command of the Lord. 38 If anyone
does not recognize this, he is not recognized. 39 So, my brothers, earnestly desire to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues. 40 But all things should be done decently and in order.
Just as issues of worship practice have divided the Corinthians, many congregations today are divided over matters of worship. God’s Word insists on clear order so that the teaching of Law and Gospel is not hindered.
Though Paul tolerates the Corinthians’ personal interests, he insists that such interests have no place in congregational gatherings, which should clearly teach God’s Word for all. The “God of peace” (Rm 15:33) has established our salvation
and life in the cross of His dear Son, our only Savior, who makes us one and strengthens us in the one true faith.
I pray: God of peace, tear down our elitist opinions and personal preferences. Build us up
and nurture us through Your humble and patient Son, Jesus. Amen.
Edward A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 2009), 1973.
1 Corinthians 14:1–25 (ESV)
Prophecy and Tongues
14 Pursue love, and earnestly desire the spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy. 2 For one who speaks in a tongue speaks not
to men but to God; for no one understands him, but he utters mysteries in the Spirit. 3 On the other hand, the one who prophesies speaks to people for their upbuilding and encouragement and consolation. 4 The
one who speaks in a tongue builds up himself, but the one who prophesies builds up the church. 5 Now I want you all to speak in tongues, but even more to prophesy. The one who prophesies is greater than the one who speaks in
tongues, unless someone interprets, so that the church may be built up.
6 Now, brothers, if I come to you speaking in
tongues, how will I benefit you unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or teaching? 7 If even lifeless instruments, such as the flute or the harp, do not give distinct notes, how will anyone know what is
played? 8 And if the bugle gives an indistinct sound, who will get ready for battle? 9 So with yourselves, if with your tongue you utter speech that is not intelligible, how will anyone know
what is said? For you will be speaking into the air. 10 There are doubtless many different languages in the world, and none is without meaning, 11 but if I do not know the meaning of the language,
I will be a foreigner to the speaker and the speaker a foreigner to me. 12 So with yourselves, since you are eager for manifestations of the Spirit, strive to excel in building up the church.
13 Therefore, one who speaks in a tongue should pray that he may interpret. 14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays but my mind is unfruitful.
15 What am I to do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will pray with my mind also; I will sing praise with my spirit, but I will sing with my mind also. 16 Otherwise, if you give thanks with
your spirit, how can anyone in the position of an outsider say “Amen” to your thanksgiving when he does not know what you are saying? 17 For you may be giving thanks well enough, but the other person is not being
built up. 18 I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you. 19 Nevertheless, in church I would rather speak five words with my mind in order to instruct others, than ten thousand
words in a tongue.
20 Brothers, do not be children in your thinking. Be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature.
21 In the Law it is written, “By people of strange tongues and by the lips of foreigners will I speak to this people, and even then they will not listen to me, says the Lord.” 22 Thus
tongues are a sign not for believers but for unbelievers, while prophecy is a sign not for unbelievers but for believers. 23 If, therefore, the whole church comes together and all speak in tongues, and outsiders or unbelievers
enter, will they not say that you are out of your minds? 24 But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or outsider enters, he is convicted by all, he is called to account by all, 25 the secrets
of his heart are disclosed, and so, falling on his face, he will worship God and declare that God is really among you.
Some Corinthians were pursuing their own edification to
the neglect of those around them. We, too, are naturally tempted to pursue what we think of as our own spiritual needs rather than patiently sharing God’s Word with others, especially those we regard as less spiritual. Such attitudes contribute to deeper
spiritual divisions among us. God calls us together for mutual edification in His Word, which always richly applies to the mature as well as the immature. Through the Word, God is really among us, giving His Spirit, faith in Christ, and all blessings of salvation.
I pray: Dearest Jesus, grant me the maturity to desire the edification of my brothers and sisters and to pursue gifts that build them up in Your love, so that our congregation
may confess You with one voice in one Spirit. Amen.
Edward A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 2009), 1971.