1 Corinthians 15:11-19
11. Therefore whether it were I or they, so we preach, and so ye believed.
11. Sire ego igitur, sive illi, ita praedicamus, et ita credidistis.
12. Now, if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?
12. Si autem Christus praedica tur excitatus a mortuis, quomodo dicunt quidam, mortuorum resurrec-tionem non esse?
13. But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:
13. Si autem mortuorum resur-rectio non est, neque Christus re-surrexit.
14. And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.
14. Quodsi Christus non resur-rexit, inanis igitur est prtaedicatio nostra, inanis et fides vestra.
15. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.
15. Invenimur etiam falsi testes Dei, quia testati sumus a Deo, quod suscitaverit Christum; quem non suscitavit, siquidem mortui non re-surgunt.
16. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised:
16.Si enim mortui non resurgunt, neque Christus resurrexit.
17. And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.
17. Si autem Christus non resur-rexit, vana est fides vestra: adhuc estis in peccatis vestris.
18. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.
18. Ergo et qui obdormierunt in Christo perierunt.
19. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.
19. Quodsi in hac vita solum spe-ramus in Christo, miserrimi sumus omnium hominum.
Observe the ground-work, on the other hand, of the former inference to be deduced from us to him; for the resurrection is not from nature, and comes from no other quarter than from Christ alone. For in Adam we die, and we recover life only in Christ; hence it follows that his resurrection is the foundation of ours, so that if that is taken away, it cannot stand3 The ground-work of the negative inference has been already stated; for as he could not have risen again but on our account, his resurrection would be null and void,4 if it were of no advantage to us.
I am at the same time well aware that there are some that give another rendering to the particle
crucified our old man, that its lusts might no longer reign in us, (Romans 6:6, 12;)
and, in fine, has
by death destroyed the power of death, and the devil himself, (Hebrews 2:14;)
yet there would have been none of all these things, if he had not, by rising again, come off victorious. Hence, if the resurrection is overthrown, the dominion of sin is set up anew.
But why does he say that we
we are reckoned as sheep appointed for slaughter.
ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.
Meanwhile, the condition of the wicked is for the most part the more desirable, because the Lord feeds them up, as hogs for the day of slaughter.
The second reason is, that believers, even though they should abound in riches and in blessings of every kind, they nevertheless do not go to excess, and do not gormandize at their ease; in fine, they do not enjoy the world, as unbelievers do, but go forward with anxiety, constantly groaning, (2 Corinthians 5:2,) partly from a consciousness of their weakness, and partly from an eager longing for the future life. Unbelievers, on the other hand, are wholly intent on intoxicating themselves with present delights.17
The third reason, which was peculiar, as I have said, to the age of the Apostle, is -- that at that time the name of Christians was so odious and abominable, that no one could then take upon himself the name of Christ without exposing his life to imminent peril. It is, therefore, not without good reason that he says that Christians would be the most miserable of all men, if their confidence were confined to this world.
1 "Perseuerance a enseigner ceste mesme chose;" -- "Perseverance in teaching this same thing."
2 "La substance et le fondement de la nostre;" -- " The substance and foundation of ours."
3 "Si ce fondement est oste, nostre resurrection ne pourra consister;" -- "If this foundation is taken away, our resurrection cannot possibly stand."
4 Billroth, when quoting the above statement of Calvin, remarks, that "Calvin seems to have deceived himself with the double meaning of the words which he uses -- 'nulla ejus resurrectio foret ;' -- these may mean either 'ejus resurrectio non est,' or ' ejus resurrectio non est vera resurrec-tio,' his resurrection is no real ressurection, and indeed only the latter suits his view of Paul's argument." It is justly observed, however, by Dr. Alexander, in his translation of Billroth, that Calvin may be considered to have "used the word nulla here in the sense of our null, void, useless," his assertion being to this effect -- that "if we rise not, then Christ's resurrection becomes null." See Biblical Cabinet, volume 23. -- .Ed.
5 "C'est a dire, sans la resurrection ;" -- "That is to say, apart from his resurrection."
6 "Et aussi il auoit desia parle du deshonneur qui en reuindroit aux hommes, c'est a dire aux Apostres et autres prescheurs ;" -- "And besides, he had spoken previously of the dishonor that resulted from it to men -- that is to say, to the Apostles and other preachers."
7 "Comme subornez ;" -- "As it were hired."
8 In accordance with this Wiclif (1380) renders the words thus -- "We haw seide witnessynge agens God." -- Ed.
9 Raphelius adduces two instances of
11 "La profession de Chrestiente;" -- "The profession of Christianity."
12 It is mentioned by Beza in his life of Calvin, that before leaving France in 1534, he "published his admirable treatise, entitled Psychopannychia, against the error of those who, reviving a doctrine which had been held in the earliest ages, taught that the soul, when separated from the body, falls asleep." -- Calvin's Tracts, volume 1 page 26. -- Ed.
13 This statement as to the resurrection is strikingly in contrast with the celebrated sentiment of Horace. (Epist. 1:16, 79.) "Mors est ultima linea rerum; -- "Death is thee ultmate limit of things." Heathen philosophers denied the possibility of a resurrection. Thus Pliny, Hist. Nat. L. 2:c. 7, says -- "Revocare defunctos ne Deus qidem potest ;" -- "To call back the dead is what God himself cannot do."
14 Pareus, in commenting on this passage, adverts in the following terms to the tenet above referred to -- "Nequaquam vero hinc sequitur, quod Psychopannychitae finxerunt: animas post mortem dormire, aut in nihilum cum corporibus redigi. Perire enim dicuntur infideles quoad animas, non physice, quod corruptae intercant; sed theologice, quod viventes felicitatern coelestem non consequantur; sed in tartara ad paenas solae vel cum corporibus tandem detrudantur;" -- "By no means, however, does it follow from this, according to the contrivance of the soul-sleepers, that souls sleep after death, or are reduced to nothing along with the body. For unbelievers are said to perish as to their souls, not physically, as though they corrupted, and died,, but theologically, because., while living they do not attain heavenly felicity, but are at length thrust down to hell for punishment, alone, or along with the body." -- Ed.
15 Described at great length by Virgil. (AEn. 6, 637-703.) -- Ed.
16 Calvin, in commenting on 1 Peter 4:17, when speaking of judgment beginning at the house of God, says: "Ideo dicit Paulus, (1 Corinthians 15:19,) Christianos sublata fide resurrectionis, omnium hominum miserrimos fore: et merito, quia dum alii absque metu sibi indulgent, assidue ingemiscunt fideles: dum aliorum peccata dissimulat Deus, et altos torpore sinit, suos sub cruets disciplina multo rigidins exercet;" -- "Hence Paul says, and justly, (1 Corinthians 15:19,) that Christians, if the hope of a resurrection were taken away, would be of all men the most miserable, because, while others indulge themselves without fear, believers incessantly groan: while God seems to let the sins of others pass unnoticed, and allows others to be in a torpid state, he exercises his own people more strictly under the discipline of the cross." -- Ed.
17 "Es voluptez et delices de ce monde;" -- "With the pleasures and delights of this world."