Christ Jesus, who abolishes death

1 Corinthians 15 is by far the most comprehensive explanation of resurrection in Scripture. It is wonderful how Paul powerfully explains here that the gospel is universal and actually includes all people: “for just as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive” (:22). That is only the case when the last enemy, death, has been abolished (:26).

new life
The life that Paul talks about in verse 22 is not what we call life here, because that has death before it and is therefore actually a slow death. No, it is the life of the Firstfruit Christ (:20). He has left death (Rom.6:9) and is the First to receive this imperishable life. The rest follows, but in a certain order (:23-24). In another passage Paul also speaks of abolishing death and there too it is absolutely clear how God does this.

2 Timothy 1
10 (…) our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolishes death and brings life and incorruption to light through the gospel.

death destroyed!
The word translated here as abolishes, also means: to nullify, to destroy. Christ Jesus abolishes death. That is the case when death is destroyed, death is no longer there. If every mortal who has ever entered into death has been made alive in incorruption, death has been destroyed. Hence it says: “who abolishtes death and brings to light life and incorruption.”

imperishable LIFE
Paul uses a well-known figure of speech here, called a hendiadys. This indicates a concept by using two nouns, instead of an adjective with a noun. Life and incorruption is the same as: incorruptible life. When death is abolished, every creature receives imperishable life. Life triumphs over death and the victory of Christ Jesus will be complete!

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