1 Corinthians 15:42 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Corinthians 15:42, NIV: So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable;

1 Corinthians 15:42, ESV: So is it with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable.

1 Corinthians 15:42, KJV: So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption:

1 Corinthians 15:42, NASB: So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable body, it is raised an imperishable body;

1 Corinthians 15:42, NLT: It is the same way with the resurrection of the dead. Our earthly bodies are planted in the ground when we die, but they will be raised to live forever.

1 Corinthians 15:42, CSB: So it is with the resurrection of the dead: Sown in corruption, raised in incorruption;

What does 1 Corinthians 15:42 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

To describe the resurrection of the bodies of those who belong to Christ, Paul has noted the significant difference between the bodies of men and animals. He has pointed out the same difference between the bodies of earth and the bodies of the moon, sun, and stars. Each body created by God has its own unique glory.

Now Paul describes the transformation that takes place between the pre-death body and the body that is raised to new life in the resurrection. One objection to resurrection in Paul's day was that human bodies are decaying and even corrupted. That's why some teachers insisted that only the spirit could continue to the afterlife. The human body would not be appropriate; it would not fit in the celestial realms of "the heavens."

Paul does not entirely disagree. Our mortal bodies are dying, dishonorable, and weak. Paul shows here, though, that those are not the bodies which enter eternity. A transformation takes place, like what happens when a seed dies to give life to a new plant (1 Corinthians 15:37). The seed—our pre-death bodies—are something perishable. They are temporary. They are always wearing out on their way to an inevitable death. What is raised to life is imperishable, a body that can never die, a body that is both physical and eternal.