But someone may ask, "How will the dead be raised? What kind of bodies will they have?"
What a foolish question! When you put a seed into the ground, it doesn't grow into a plant unless it dies first.
And what you put in the ground is not the plant that will grow, but only a dry little seed of wheat or whatever it is you are planting.
Then God gives it a new body -- just the kind he wants it to have. A different kind of plant grows from each kind of seed.
And just as there are different kinds of seeds and plants, so also there are different kinds of flesh -- whether of humans, animals, birds, or fish.
There are bodies in the heavens, and there are bodies on earth. The glory of the heavenly bodies is different from the beauty of the earthly bodies.
The sun has one kind of glory, while the moon and stars each have another kind. And even the stars differ from each other in their beauty and brightness.
It is the same way for the resurrection of the dead. Our earthly bodies, which die and decay, will be different when they are resurrected, for they will never die.
Our bodies now disappoint us, but when they are raised, they will be full of glory. They are weak now, but when they are raised, they will be full of power.
They are natural human bodies now, but when they are raised, they will be spiritual bodies. For just as there are natural bodies, so also there are spiritual bodies.
The Scriptures tell us, "The first man, Adam, became a living person." a But the last Adam -- that is, Christ -- is a life-giving Spirit.
What came first was the natural body, then the spiritual body comes later.
Adam, the first man, was made from the dust of the earth, while Christ, the second man, came from heaven.
Every human being has an earthly body just like Adam's, but our heavenly bodies will be just like Christ's.
Just as we are now like Adam, the man of the earth, so we will someday be like Christ, the man from heaven.
What I am saying, dear brothers and sisters, is that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. These perishable bodies of ours are not able to live forever.
But let me tell you a wonderful secret God has revealed to us. Not all of us will die, but we will all be transformed.
It will happen in a moment, in the blinking of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, the Christians who have died b will be raised with transformed bodies. And then we who are living will be transformed so that we will never die.
For our perishable earthly bodies must be transformed into heavenly bodies that will never die.
When this happens -- when our perishable earthly bodies have been transformed into heavenly bodies that will never die -- then at last the Scriptures will come true: "Death is swallowed up in victory. c55
O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?" d56
For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power.
How we thank God, who gives us victory over sin and death through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)