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Sermon #5541

... if Christ be not Risen

A Sermon on 1 Corinthians 15:12


1 Corinthians 15:12 ESV KJV
Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? (ESV)

Sermon Description

Why does the resurrection matter? According to Paul, the resurrection matters because it is the only hope for humanity. If Jesus did not rise from the dead, then all who believe in Him will not either. Christians only have hope if there is a resurrection and an afterlife. But if there is no resurrection, then there is no soul and morality. In this sermon on 1 Corinthians 15:12 titled “…if Christ be not Risen,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones says that all of Christianity depends on the fact of Jesus’s empty tomb and of the future hope of the resurrection to life of all believers. Jesus did not simply live a perfect life and die upon the cross to atone for sins; He also rose from the dead to overcome death. Likewise, all those that believe in Jesus not only receive His righteousness, but they will rise from the dead on the last day just as Jesus has. In a world that sees people as nothing more than mere animals who are destined to die and decompose, the message that believers will live forever with Jesus Christ if they believe in Him is a message of great hope. All who flee sin and come to Jesus are promised to live with Him forever in the new heaven and new earth.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The apostle Paul is addressing the church in Corinth. Some in the church are denying the resurrection of the dead.
  2. Paul argues that if there is no resurrection, then Christ has not been raised.
  3. If Christ has not been raised, then the apostles are false witnesses.
  4. If Christ has not been raised, then faith is in vain and people are still in their sins.
  5. Paul delivered the gospel message that Christ died for sins, was buried, and rose again. The Corinthians received and believed this message.
  6. Paul argues that without the resurrection, there is no point in moral living or striving. People might as well indulge in pleasure and "eat and drink, for tomorrow we die."
  7. The resurrection proves that Jesus is the Son of God. Jesus is the "second man" and "last Adam" who came to remedy the consequences of the first Adam's sin.
  8. Through Adam, sin and death entered the world. Through Christ comes resurrection from the dead.
  9. Christ died for sins, satisfied the law, conquered the devil, and overcame death. Believers will be raised in glory.
  10. This life is preparation for eternal life. Believers purify themselves in hope of seeing Christ in glory.
  11. Paul warns the Corinthians not to be deceived. Wrong doctrine leads to wrong living. Some do not know God.
  12. Paul declares the gospel: Christ died for sins, was buried, and rose again. The Corinthians received this message and are saved if they continue to believe it.
  13. If Christ is not raised, faith is in vain and people remain in their sins. But through belief in Christ, sins are forgiven and eternal life is gained.

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Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.