Q&A: Resurrection and Decay

Resurrection and Decay

How can we say we will have resurrected bodies if they have already decayed in the ground?

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Answer

Many people wonder how we can have resurrection bodies because if we die in this life, then our bodies decay into the ground. Well, the Bible has an answer that focuses on the power of God rather than giving us a technical explanation. God knows what he's going to do. In 1 Corinthians 15 there is an explanation of this, and it says that the bodies that we will have will be transfigured bodies; they won't be exactly the same, but it's kind of the difference between the seed and the plant that comes from the seed. You can illustrate this with the resurrection resurrected body of Jesus because it was identifiable as Jesus, but there was also the change – he was glorified. He was no longer subject to death. Now, that's a mystery to us because all our experience is related to this life, but it's not a mystery to God because he's the creator, so he is going to take care of it. You don't need to worry about it.

Answer by Dr. Vern S. Poythress

Dr. Vern S. Poythress is Professor of New Testament Interpretation at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, PA.