Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Flesh is of No Avail

[50] I tell you this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. [51] Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, [52] in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. 1 Cor. 15:50-52 (ESV)

“The flesh is of no avail.” Christ tells us in John Chapter 6:63, “it is the spirit who gives life.” Flesh and blood cannon inherit the kingdom of God. Jesus is not talking of his own flesh and blood, which he gives us as true food from heaven, which has inherited the kingdom of heaven, and is free from sin. He is talking of our own flesh and blood, which is helpless to bring us to life, or come to faith. As Luther says: “I believe I cannot by my own reason or strength believe in Jesus Christ my Lord or come to Him, but the Holy Spirit has called me by the gospel….” The Spirit gives us life, gives us faith, and in that faith we receive the promises of life and salvation Christ gives to us with His body and blood in the Lord’s Supper. Yet without that faith we receive judgment from the very same Body and Blood. This is not a matter to be treated lightly.
Paul reiterates here that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God. Our Flesh and blood is sinful and perishable. Our souls our spirits will shed the flesh and blood we now inhabit, and though we will not all sleep we will all be changed. We will be given new bodies, spiritual bodies, imperishable bodies fit for heaven. And all this will happen in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet sounding the final victory of God.

1 comment:

steve martin said...

Now that's the Good News!

So many preachers twist the 'flesh is no no avail' into "now you must clean up your flesh". That is a really good joke.There's no cleaning up our flesh.

But He has done it. Is doing it. Will yet do it.

Nice job Bror!!!