Just as everyone dies because we all belong to Adam, everyone who belongs to Christ will be given new life.

1 Corinthians 15:22

“…everyone who belongs to Christ will be given new life.” (1 Corinthians 15:22)

Max Lucado shares his story of visiting a cemetery in the city where he lived and of one tombstone’s epitaph that especially caught his attention. Erected to the memory of Grace Llewellen Smith, it read:

“Sleeps, but rests not.

Loved, but was loved not.

Tried to please but pleased not.

Died as she lived – alone.”

As Lucado goes on to recount, her tombstone also lists the name of her two husbands in life, only serving to underscore the sadness of her epitaph.

We saw yesterday how death and suffering came into the world through Adam’s sin, condemning us to relational brokenness with each other and especially God, as well as sickness, disease, pain, and death. All “…through a man (Adam).”

Grace Smith’s tombstone is not just a summary of her experience of life – it is an accurate portrayal of what much of humanity also feels. If this were the end of the story, then there truly is no hope for us – life remains a futile, pointless existence and our death is just as futile.

God did not leave us there, however. Paul draws a distinction between two men in 1 Corinthians 15:22. As we have seen, the first man, Adam, brought death into the world. But the second man, Jesus, through His own death and resurrection, brought life!

Jesus told us that He came so that we might “have life and have it to the full.” (John 10:10). When a person puts their faith in Jesus their experience of life is deeply transformed. Instead of futility they are given purpose, broken relationships are restored, and they begin to experience the joy that comes from being in close fellowship with the God Who made them.

This is real life!

And there is also life ahead. When Paul says Christians “will be given new life”, he is looking forward to the day when those who have trusted in Him will be raised from the dead, just as He was, to never die again.

This is the unrivalled hope of the Christian: that our life can be transformed now, by trusting in Jesus, and it will also be transformed in the future, when He raises our bodies from the dust of the earth, never to die again.

This promise and hope is for “everyone who belongs to Christ!”

For further reflection: How has your life changed since you came to know Jesus?

Max Lucado shares his story of visiting a cemetery in the city where he lived and of one tombstone’s epitaph that especially caught his attention. Erected to the memory of Grace Llewellen Smith, it read:

“Sleeps, but rests not.

Loved, but was loved not.

Tried to please but pleased not.

Died as she lived – alone.”

As Lucado goes on to recount, her tombstone also lists the name of her two husbands in life, only serving to underscore the sadness of her epitaph.

We saw yesterday how death and suffering came into the world through Adam’s sin, condemning us to relational brokenness with each other and especially God, as well as sickness, disease, pain, and death. All “…through a man (Adam).”

Grace Smith’s tombstone is not just a summary of her experience of life – it is an accurate portrayal of what much of humanity also feels. If this were the end of the story, then there truly is no hope for us – life remains a futile, pointless existence and our death is just as futile.

God did not leave us there, however. Paul draws a distinction between two men in 1 Corinthians 15:22. As we have seen, the first man, Adam, brought death into the world. But the second man, Jesus, through His own death and resurrection, brought life!

Jesus told us that He came so that we might “have life and have it to the full.” (John 10:10). When a person puts their faith in Jesus their experience of life is deeply transformed. Instead of futility they are given purpose, broken relationships are restored, and they begin to experience the joy that comes from being in close fellowship with the God Who made them.

This is real life!

And there is also life ahead. When Paul says Christians “will be given new life”, he is looking forward to the day when those who have trusted in Him will be raised from the dead, just as He was, to never die again.

This is the unrivalled hope of the Christian: that our life can be transformed now, by trusting in Jesus, and it will also be transformed in the future, when He raises our bodies from the dust of the earth, never to die again.

This promise and hope is for “everyone who belongs to Christ!”

For further reflection: How has your life changed since you came to know Jesus?