Christianity is the only religion or a worldview which teaches us that people who take refuge in Christ, people who believe that He is the only Savior of their lives, will overcome death and sin. These are two of the most powerful evils in our life which are inescapable, they’re very part of our existence. But God promises that He will deliver His people on the last day when Christ returns. In this passage, we learn that Christians will have victory over death and sin when Christ returns to take them home (heaven), but we also learn what Christians are required to do until that day comes.
Christianity rests on the resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is this doctrine, that confirms and seals the salvation of the sinners redeemed by Christ. Not only that, but it also ascertains bodily resurrection of the redeemed people. But how does that happen? What faculties of our bodies will be restored, and in what condition? And how does this doctrine of the resurrection of the dead help us here and now, practically? This sermon tries to provide answers to those perplexing, yet important questions.
Christianity stands or falls on the doctrine of Christ’s resurrection; you take away resurrection, and you’ll lose Christianity. It is this truth that seals believer’s faith firmly and gives hope of life after death precisely because Jesus Christ rose from the dead. It indeed shows us that Jesus Christ is the Son of God came to die for sinners, to purchase the forgiveness for their sins. In this passage, we learn how unrealistic, illogical and hopeless it is to disbelieve in Christ’s resurrection, and what blessings the truth of resurrection entails for those who trust in Him.
Christianity is based on historically verifiable facts. It is not a myth. Jesus Christ’s death on the cross as a substitute for sinners, His burial, and His resurrection prove that He was indeed the Son of God came to this world to save the sinners. His resurrection has been confirmed by many people throughout generations including secular scholars today. In this passage, we learn that a Christian is called to hold fast to this truth, because on this historically verifiable truth that his hope and faith in Christ sustains.
Corporate Worship exists primarily to honor God, to remember His promises, to praise Him for who He is and for what He has done for us. So if the worship is all about Him and not about us, then we’re required to do so in a way that He has commanded us to worship Him, not the way we think He should be worshiped. In this passage, the Apostle Paul confronts disorderly worship practices in the church, and gives us instructions on how to worship God decently and in order.
The gift of tongues was a supernatural gift given by the Holy Spirit to God’s chosen servants to speak in foreign human languages for the sake of preaching the gospel. The gift of prophecy on the other hand was a word of God spoken by a prophet under the divine authority of God to His people. The Corinthian church misused both of these gifts for their own popularity and brought chaos and confusion in the public worship of God. In this passage, we learn the how the gift of tongues and prophecy were used in the early church and the practical way Paul commands to handle these gifts in the church.
The gift of tongues in the Bible always referred to foreign human languages. God’s servants and His apostles were given special authority and power through the Holy Spirit to speak in foreign languages which they have not learned, for the sake of advancing the gospel in other parts of the world. In the Corinthian church, people were misusing this gift of tongues to elevate themselves as super spiritual Christians appearing to have high status in God’s sight than those who don’t speak in tongues. In this passage, we see how the apostle Paul handles this tension and discrimination in the church and the solution he provides.
Spiritual gifts are primarily given to Christians for the benefit and the edification of the church, so that the church might be blessed with all the necessary resources through the gifts of God’s people. But it is possible for Christians to boast about themselves and their gifts and not serve others through their gifts. It is possible to make the gifts an end in themselves and not have a greater purpose. In this passage, we learn that spiritual gifts only serve to strengthen others and love people because the gifts are temporary but Love is not.
Christians are called to reflect the character of God. This passage lists out various characteristics which believers need to exhibit. In the last part of this section, we see how love does not rejoice in wrongdoing but in truth. Love also forebears all things when someone sins against us, because God has been forbearing towards us when we sin against Him. Gospel becomes the foundation on which we relate to other people in love.
There are many ways we can be rude to others, for example when we’re not grateful to others for the service they have rendered, or we interrupt people when they’re speaking to us, or we ignore someone when they approach us. We can also irritate or hurt people when we say insensitive things. We often talk about love in radical and heroic terms and how we fail in those areas, but our failure to love can also be seen in small ways as mentioned earlier. In this passage, we learn how rudeness, self-obsession, and being provocative hinders us from loving others.