The Beginning of the Story

January 5, 2021

1 Corinthians 15

“But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead. He is the first of a great harvest of all who have died.” (1 Corinthians 15:20 (NLT)

Big Idea: The cross is not the end of the story. 

For our honeymoon, my wife and I got to tour Israel. We sat on the steps Jesus climbed into the Temple, rode across the Sea of Galilee, and saw the mountain where Jesus preached the Sermon on the Mount (or at least where someone decided to put the gift shop). Of course, the most incredible place was the Garden Tomb. There we saw a cave, with a slot on the ground where a stone might block the entrance. We walked inside and turned to the right, where there was a bed carved out of the rock. Of course, the one thing we did not see was the most important thing of all: the body of Jesus. 

Although we have been looking at the cross as the primary theme of 1 Corinthians, the cross is not the end of the story, but the beginning. When He died, Jesus paid the penalty for our sins, but on the third day He rose again. Death could not hold the Author of life, and when He rose again, the new creation began. Just as the first Adam was the beginning of humanity, Jesus as the second Adam is the beginning of the restored humanity. The judgment of our sins is only the beginning of the story because the life of Jesus gives us hope.

Discussion Idea: What does Paul mean in 1 Corinthians 15:19 when he says that if our hope in Christ is in this life only, we should be the most pitied of all people?

Prayer Focus: Pray for God to help you remember that weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning.