To ensure no one missed his point, the apostle utilized perfect double parallelism, demonstrating that Christ’s resurrection makes the raising of those who die in Christ inevitable.
Paul employed the metaphor of first fruits to depict the similarity and difference between Adam and Jesus (Lev 23:9–14; Rom 8:29; Col 1:18). As the two people who represent humanity, we find our identity and our destiny in one or the other.
The first Adam caused death to enter the human world.
Only those of us in Christ find our identity and destiny in Jesus. We await the ultimate restoration of our resurrected bodies (John 5:28–29, 1 Thess 4:13–18). Christ’s redeeming work shall continue until he has completely destroyed the reign of sin and death (1 Cor 3:10–15).
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Read 1 Cor 15:20–23. What does it mean to be “in Adam” versus “in Christ?” How have you experienced those conditions?
[related posts include A Second Resurrection (John 5:28–29); A Return to the Ground (Gen 3:19); Christ’s Resurrected Body (Luke 24:31, 35–44); Effects of the Fall Reversed (Rom 5:12–21 and Rom 16:1–12); Co-Heirs with Christ (Rom 8:16–18); Creation’s Eager Expectation (Rom 8:19); Subjected to Futility (Rom 8:20); Set Free from the Slavery of Corruption (Rom 8:21–22); Perishable Flesh and Blood (1 Cor 15:50); We Shall Be Changed (1 Cor 15:51–52); Victory over Death (1 Cor 15:53–55); The Firstborn of All Creation (Col 1:15–18); and The Armies in Heaven (Rev 19:14)]
[Click here to go to Chapter 10: The Tree of Life (Genesis 3:22–24)]
 Ciampa and Rosner, The First Letter to the Corinthians, 763.
 Fee, The First Epistle to the Corinthians, Rev. Ed., 830.
 Ciampa and Rosner, The First Letter to the Corinthians, 762–3.
 Witherington, Conflict and Community in Corinth: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary on 1 and 2 Corinthians, 304.
 Blomberg, 1 Corinthians, 298.
 Fee, The First Epistle to the Corinthians, Rev. Ed., 832.
 Ciampa and Rosner, The First Letter to the Corinthians, 763–4.