3. The Bible most explicitly declares the doctrine of the general resurrection: this doctrine is corroborated by the fact, that Enoch and Elijah were, both soul and body, translated to heaven; that Jairus' daughter, the widow's son at Nain, and Lazarus, were raised; that many dead bodies were literally raised at Christ's crucifixion; and that Christ himself has arisen from the dead: 5. It should be added and remembered, that Christ arose as a public Person, the Representative and Forerunner of all saints. His resurrection was a pledge and assurance of theirs. (a)

Q. 3. Will the same body be raised that is deposited in the earth?

(a) Job xix. 26, 27. And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God; whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.-John v. 28, 29. Marvel not at this; for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth, they that have done good unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil unto the resurrection of damnation.-Acts xxiv. 15. And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the ust and unjust.-1 Cor. xv. 21, 22. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.Heb. xi. 5. By faith Enoch was translated, that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him; for before his translation, he had this testimony, that he pleased God.-2 Kings ii. 11. And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven Luke viii. 54, 55. And he put them all out, and took her by the hand, and called, saying, Maid, arise. And her spirit came again, and she arose straightway; and he commanded to give her meat.--Luke vii. 14, 15. And he said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise. And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak.-John xi. 43, 44. And when he had thus spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. And he that was dead came forth bound hand and foot with grave clothes; and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go.-Matt. xxvii. 52. And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose.-Matt. xxviii. 6. He is not here; for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

A. We have reason to believe that all which is essential to constitute the same body will be raised. (b)

Q. 4. Is it possible that the dead should be raised? A. Certainly it is. Infinite power can do it. There is no incapacity in a dead body to be raised. Death does not annihilate, but only reduces the body to its first principles or elements. It cannot be more difficult to raise the dead, than to create at first. (c)

Q. 5. When will the dead be raised?

A. At the end of the world-the time of general judgment. Then the bodies of all those who have deceased will be raised, and the bodies of all those who are alive will be changed, (which will be equivalent to a resurrection,) as were the bodies of Enoch and Elijah at their translation. And the raised bodies of both the righteous and the wicked will be united to the souls with which they were connected in this life. (d)

(b) 1 Cor. xv. 35-44. But some man will say, How are the dead raised up; and with what body do they come? Thou fool, that which thou sowest, is not quickened, except it die. And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain. But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him, and to every seed his own body. All flesh is not the same flesh; but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds. There are also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial; but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differeth from another star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.

(c) Acts xxvi. 8. Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead?

(d) 1 Thess. iv. 15-17. For this we say unto you, by the word of the Lord; that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we which are alive and remain, shall be caught up together with them in the clouds

Q. 6. Why will the body be raised or changed, and united to the soul in the life hereafter?

A. 1. It will be changed because the present body is unsuited to the future state. The body of every creature is fitted by God to the state in which it exists. This is a constituted law of the whole creation. (e) 2. The body will be raised, that it may be united to the soul, so that, as it was a partaker of the deeds on earth, it may be a partaker of the awards that shall be adjudged for eternity. 3. By the re-union of body and soul, the person will be prepared to enjoy or suffer more than he otherwise would. The righteous hereby will be completely redeemed from the evil effects of sin, and the wicked will be brought entirely under its dominion, and be compelled to endure its evils. In consequence of the connection of soul and body, a person is capable of virtues and vices of which the soul alone cannot be, as the denial and gratification of certain bodily appetites or animal desires. And for these the soul and body connected will be awarded in a future state; and in this way the happiness or misery of the soul will be augmented. Were it not for this consideration, it would be difficult to point out the design of the resurrection. 4. By the resurrection or change of the body and its re-union with the soul, the wisdom, goodness, and power of God will be illustriously manifested.

Q. 7. By whom will the dead be raised?

A. This supernatural and Divine work is attribut ed in Scripture to the Lord Jesus Christ in His

to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord.-1 Cor. xv. 51, 52, 53. 23. Behold, I show you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump; (for the trumpet shall sound;) and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. But every man in his own order; Christ the first fruits, afterwards they that are Christ's at his coming.

(e) 1 Cor. xv. 50. Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corrup tion inherit incorruption.

mediatorial character. It will be effected instrument ally by the archangel's trumpet, sounded by Christ's order, and attended with His all-quickening power. This will be a summons, not only for the dead bodies to arise, but for the souls to be united with them. (ƒ) Q. 8. What will be the nature of the resurrection


A. The bodies of the righteous will be raised spiritual, incorruptible, strong, active, and glorious. They will not be subject to weariness by labor, wasting by disease, or decay by age. The bodies of the wicked will be raised immortal; but in dishonor, deformity, shame, and everlasting contempt. (g)

Q. 9. What will be the feelings of mankind at the time of the resurrection?

A. The righteous will rise with joy and triumph; but the wicked will rise with fear and trembling.

Q. 10. Will persons who were acquainted with each other in this life know each other in the life to come, when clothed with the resurrection body?

A. Undoubtedly they will. The righteous who knew each other on earth will know each other in heaven. The wicked who knew each other on earth will know each other in hell. Even spirits in the separate or intermediate state know each other. Moses and Elijah knew each other, and talked with each other, in the mount of transfiguration. (h)

Q. 11. Is the doctrine of the resurrection an important and peculiar doctrine of Christianity?

A. It is; for, though it may appear non-essential to some, incredible to others, and mysterious to all, yet the whole Gospel stands or falls with the truth

(f) 1 Thess. iv. 16. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first.

(g) Philip. iii. 21. Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.-Dan. xii. 2. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to verlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.

(h) Matt. xvii. 3. And behold there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him.

of this doctrine, especially with the resurrection of Christ. (i)




Q. 1. What is meant by the general judgment? The general trial of angels and men, whether holy or unholy.

Q. 2. Is there a particular judgment passed upon all, both angels and men, at the close of their probation?

A. There is; but this judgment is individual and


Q. 3. What are the evidences that there will be a general judgment?

A. 1. The dictates of conscience and reason suggest this. 2. The justice of God implies this. 3. And the Sacred Scriptures explicitly teach this. All that is said in the Bible respecting the probation of angels and men has reference to a general judgment. (a) When will the day of judgment be?

Q. 4.


At the end of the world-when this scene of things shall close. (b)

(i) 1 Cor. xv. 12, 13, 14. Now if Christ be preached, that he rose from the dead, how say some among you, that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen. And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.

(a) Acts xvii. 31. Because he hath appointed a day in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man, whom he hath ordained, whereof he hath given assurance unto all men in that he hath raised him from the dead.-Rom. xiv. 10. 12. But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.―Jude 6. And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

(b) Matt. xxv. 31-33. When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory; and before him shall be gathered all nations; and he shall separate them one from another, as a

« ElőzőTovább »