But if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him.
1 Corinthians 15:12-20
Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say there is no resurrection of the dead? If there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, then our proclamation has been in vain and your faith has been in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified of God that he raised Christ—whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised. If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have died in Christ have perished. If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied. But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have died.
1 Corinthians 15:53-55
For this perishable body must put on imperishability, and this mortal body must put on immortality. When this perishable body puts on imperishability, and this mortal body puts on immortality, then the saying that is written will be fulfilled: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.” “Where, 0 death, is your victory? Where, 0 death, is your sting?”
Please take time to reflect on the image below.
Nowhere does Paul exude more confidence than in his teaching on the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Quoting a prophetic passage from Hosea, Paul confronts death as an enemy personified that has lost its power definitively in Christ’s victory on the cross. Where, indeed, is death’s sting if the tomb is but a doorway to a promised kingdom? For Paul, the resurrection is God’s seal upon the victory that his Son Jesus achieved.
Lord, in the glory of the resurrection
your Father demonstrated the ultimate vindication of his beloved Son.
Death no longer reigns supreme.
Resurrection is the promise of new and eternal life.
We rejoice in this promise,
and we thank you for the vision of hope it has brought to our world.
Closing remarks and vote of thanks, from our Rector, Revd Andrew Manning
To conclude, we let Paul have the final word. In this most famous passage, Paul offers us a model of the cross to emulate.
Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death—even death on a cross. Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
We have been united with mind and heart to the sufferings of Jesus. In obedience and love he conquered sin and death. Because of this obedience and love, he rose to life. We have been encouraged to die to ourselves, to pick up our own cross and follow Jesus every day. By dying with him we have also risen with him to a new and never-ending life.
Jesus be with us as we go out to do your will, through your grace and strength, may we keep alive the bright flame of your love for us. Keep us steadfast in our desire to fully, embrace the mysteries of our baptism into you, Help us not to forget that you live in us and that through us you love others and pardon them help us to console others by bringing them your peace. While crucified images of you abound, my we see you as our Risen Saviour In this life’s journey my we travel faithfully along the way of the cross obedient to your word and teachings until that day when we will rise with you to everlasting life.