I want to make quite clear to you, brothers, what the message of the gospel that I preached to you is; you accepted it and took your stand on it,
and you are saved by it, if you keep to the message I preached to you; otherwise your coming to believe was in vain.
The tradition I handed on to you in the first place, a tradition which I had myself received, was that Christ died for our sins, in accordance with the scriptures,
and that he was buried; and that on the third day, he was raised to life, in accordance with the scriptures;
and that he appeared to Cephas; and later to the Twelve;
and next he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still with us, though some have fallen asleep;
then he appeared to James, and then to all the apostles.
Last of all he appeared to me too, as though I was a child born abnormally.
For I am the least of the apostles and am not really fit to be called an apostle, because I had been persecuting the Church of God;
but what I am now, I am through the grace of God, and the grace which was given to me has not been wasted. Indeed, I have worked harder than all the others -- not I, but the grace of God which is with me.
Anyway, whether it was they or I, this is what we preach and what you believed.
Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you be saying that there is no resurrection of the dead?
If there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ cannot have been raised either,
and if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is without substance, and so is your faith.
What is more, we have proved to be false witnesses to God, for testifying against God that he raised Christ to life when he did not raise him -- if it is true that the dead are not raised.
For, if the dead are not raised, neither is Christ;
and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is pointless and you have not, after all, been released from your sins.
In addition, those who have fallen asleep in Christ are utterly lost.
If our hope in Christ has been for this life only, we are of all people the most pitiable.
In fact, however, Christ has been raised from the dead, as the first-fruits of all who have fallen asleep.
As it was by one man that death came, so through one man has come the resurrection of the dead.
Just as all die in Adam, so in Christ all will be brought to life;
but all of them in their proper order: Christ the first-fruits, and next, at his coming, those who belong to him.
After that will come the end, when he will hand over the kingdom to God the Father, having abolished every principality, every ruling force and power.
For he is to be king until he has made his enemies his footstool,
and the last of the enemies to be done away with is death, for he has put all things under his feet.
But when it is said everything is subjected, this obviously cannot include the One who subjected everything to him.
When everything has been subjected to him, then the Son himself will be subjected to the One who has subjected everything to him, so that God may be all in all.
Otherwise, what are people up to who have themselves baptised on behalf of the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, what is the point of being baptised on their behalf?
And what about us? Why should we endanger ourselves every hour of our lives?
I swear by the pride that I take in you, in Christ Jesus our Lord, that I face death every day.
If I fought wild animals at Ephesus in a purely human perspective, what had I to gain by it?
If the dead are not going to be raised, then Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we shall be dead.
So do not let anyone lead you astray, 'Bad company corrupts good ways.' Wake up from your stupor as you should and leave sin alone; some of you have no understanding of God; I tell you this to instil some shame in you.
Someone may ask: How are dead people raised, and what sort of body do they have when they come?
How foolish! What you sow must die before it is given new life;
and what you sow is not the body that is to be, but only a bare grain, of wheat I dare say, or some other kind;
it is God who gives it the sort of body that he has chosen for it, and for each kind of seed its own kind of body.
Not all flesh is the same flesh: there is human flesh; animals have another kind of flesh, birds another and fish yet another.
Then there are heavenly bodies and earthly bodies; the heavenly have a splendour of their own, and the earthly a different splendour.
The sun has its own splendour, the moon another splendour, and the stars yet another splendour; and the stars differ among themselves in splendour.
It is the same too with the resurrection of the dead: what is sown is perishable, but what is raised is imperishable;
what is sown is contemptible but what is raised is glorious; what is sown is weak, but what is raised is powerful;
what is sown is a natural body, and what is raised is a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is a spiritual body too.
So the first man, Adam, as scripture says, became a living soul; and the last Adam has become a life-giving spirit.
But first came the natural body, not the spiritual one; that came only afterwards.
The first man, being made of earth, is earthly by nature; the second man is from heaven.
The earthly man is the pattern for earthly people, the heavenly man for heavenly ones.
And as we have borne the likeness of the earthly man, so we shall bear the likeness of the heavenly one.
What I am saying, brothers, is that mere human nature cannot inherit the kingdom of God: what is perishable cannot inherit what is imperishable.
Now I am going to tell you a mystery: we are not all going to fall asleep,
but we are all going to be changed, instantly, in the twinkling of an eye, when the last trumpet sounds. The trumpet is going to sound, and then the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed,
because this perishable nature of ours must put on imperishability, this mortal nature must put on immortality.
And after this perishable nature has put on imperishability and this mortal nature has put on immortality, then will the words of scripture come true: Death is swallowed up in victory.
Death, where is your victory? Death, where is your sting?
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin comes from the Law.
Thank God, then, for giving us the victory through Jesus Christ our Lord.
So, my dear brothers, keep firm and immovable, always abounding in energy for the Lord's work, being sure that in the Lord none of your labours is wasted.
The New Jerusalem Bible (NJB) is a Catholic translation of the Bible published in 1985. The New Jerusalem Bible (NJB) has become the most widely used Roman Catholic Bible outside of the United States. It has the imprimatur of Cardinal George Basil Hume.
Like its predecessor, the Jerusalem Bible, the New Jerusalem Bible (NJB) version is translated "directly from the Hebrew, Greek or Aramaic." The 1973 French translation, the Bible de Jerusalem, is followed only "where the text admits to more than one interpretation." Introductions and notes, with some modifications, are taken from the Bible de Jerusalem.
Source: The Very Reverend Dom (Joseph) Henry Wansbrough, OSB, MA (Oxon), STL (Fribourg), LSS (Rome), a monk of Ampleforth Abbey and a biblical scholar. He was General Editor of the New Jerusalem Bible. "New Jerusalem Bible, Regular Edition", pg. v.
Ten Commandments | Books of the Bible | Buy a Bible
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