Radical Effects of the Resurrection

If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. . . . Why are we in danger every hour? 31 I protest, brothers, by my pride in you, which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die every day! 32 What do I gain if, humanly speaking, I fought with beasts at Ephesus? If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.” . . . But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. (1 Corinthians 15:19, 30-32, 20)

Paul ponders how he would assess his lifestyle if there were no resurrection from the dead. He says it would be ridiculous—pitiable. The resurrection guided and empowered him to do things which would be ludicrous without the hope of resurrection.

For example, Paul looks at all the dangers he willingly faces. He says they come “every hour.”

On frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers. (2 Corinthians 11:26)

Then he considers the extent of his self-denial and says, “I die every day.”

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John Piper (@JohnPiper) is founder and teacher of desiringGod.org and chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. For 33 years, he served as pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is author of more than 50 books.