But someone will say, “How are the dead raised? And with what kind of body do they come?” You fool! That which you sow does not come to life unless it dies; and that which you sow, you do not sow the body which is to be, but a bare grain, perhaps of wheat or of something else. But God gives it a body just as He wished, and to each of the seeds a body of its own. All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one flesh of men, and another flesh of beasts, and another flesh of birds, and another of fish. There are also heavenly bodies and earthly bodies, but the glory of the heavenly is one, and the glory of the earthly is another. 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. So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable body, it is raised an imperishable body; 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 Corinthians 15:35-44
The main point in what Paul is saying here is that your life is like a seed that will result in a plant that looks different from the seed. Your earthly body is designed for life on earth, while your heavenly body is designed for life in heaven. This is what resurrection is like. Paul is saying we have plenty of evidence from the way God works through nature to understand this.
Before Jesus came, Jews held a hope for resurrection – for life after death. The prophets had given them this hope…and sustained it. There had, however, been no clear definition of the shape resurrection would take. What Jesus brought to light – and that apparently no one had previously considered – was that resurrection would lead to heaven – not just back to earth. Neither did the Jews expect their Messiah to die prematurely – if at all. When Jesus demonstrated the shape resurrection would take, and the destination to which it would lead, it turned the world upside down.
(Remember that prayer is more about listening than talking. Use the words below to start yourself, but then allow time to reflect more on the Scripture above before you say the “Amen.” During that time of quiet reflection, let God shape your thoughts and wait for a sense of peace to come. That’s your signal to say “Amen” and go forth to the day.)
Lord, thank you for a resurrection to heaven!…(this is where you remain quiet to let Him work in your thoughts)… Amen.
(All scriptures, unless otherwise noted, are taken from the NASB.)