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venience of men. Our future home of the soul, is called spiritual ; and Paul says our bodies there will be spiritual. This is reasonable.
A bare grain, that is, thou sowest a bare grain. It may chance of wheat or of some other kind. No matter which we take for illustration, is the meaning. Hence the apostle gives no preference, but speaks only of the seed. We sow the kernel. This is all we do ; God does the rest. He gives the new body; and Professor Hitchcock adds, that the body which God gives, though not the same, is precisely like the one that was deposited in the ground. Hence le argues, that, though the resurrection body will not be the same, which we have here, it will be exactly like it. He saw the utter folly of trying to make the apostle teach the common doctrine. He, saw, too, no doubt, some ol the difficulties in the way of this doctri:e. These are insuperable ; and they will readily suggest themselves to all minds open to conviction.* But in the affirmation, that the resurrection body is precisely like the present, he thought Paul was on his side. The ground of his mistake is in the supposition that Paul.uses the seed for argument, and not merely for illustration.
Paul reasoned from analogy ; but he knew how far he could safely reason in this way; and stopped without making any mistakes. Others reason from analogy ; but they go too far, and fall into gross error's. The apostle did not use the analogy of the seed, so far as to conclude that our future bodies will be composed of the same materials as the present because the seed produces its exact kind.
But what Paul failed to do, Prof. Hitchcock has done. Suppose, then, we take up the same reasoning from analogy, and go a little beyond the Professor. “ The seed that is produced is
composed of the same materials as the secr? that produces it,” says Prof. Hitchcock. Now we say, that the same materials, so far as they are the same, must be equally subject to decay, and equally capable of reproduction. Paul says, the wheat seed may be used to illustrate our subject. The wheat produced is as subject to decay, as that which produces it.
How then can it stand for an immortal body, that can not decay? Again, the seed produced can be sown and produce again. Nay, one seed will produce thirty, sixty or a hundred. With such analogies as these, we may find a hundred bodies in the future lisc, awaiting one soul! We may find all these bodies as subject to decay as the present one. We may find ourselves as capable of reproduction as we are now.
This is what comes from analogical reasoning, without a knowledge of the exact limits, within which it should he confined. Paul does not infer the future bodies of men from analogy, but says that this will be determined by the pleasure of God. If your future condition and surroundings were to be like the present, it would be reasonable to conclude that the pleasure of God would assign us other bodies similar to the present ; and for the reason that such would be best for us. But that the future would be like the present, Paul did not know; and so he refers the matter to the pleasure of God. In the next place, he says, God gives to each seed a body of its own. This can mean no more than a body suited to its nature. infer from this, that our iinmortal bodies will be adapted to our wants. These wants, in a spiritual and immortal state, will be different from any which we have now; and our bod. ies inust correspond. This he expresses by saying they are spiritual.
All flesh is not the same flesh ; but there is one flesh of men, and another flesh of beasts, and another flesh of birds, and another of fishes. 59.
Here again we have the argument from analogy. In supposing the bodies of men, in the future life, to be different from those they have now, Paul reasons from the analogy of God's other works. As the diverse animals of the earth are assigned different elements and spheres of action, it was necessary that their bodies should be various, and adapted to their condition and surroundings. So far, therefore, as our future life will be different from the present, we ought to ex: pect that God will give us bodies unlike those we zow occupy. He will at least consult, our comfort and convenience, as
much as he does those of the lower animals. This is only reasoning in a general way; it is not giving us any exact information concerning the “house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.” But he assures us that the future residence of the soul will be according to the pleasure of God – that it will be our own, that is, adapted to our nature that it will be suited to our condition, like the bodies of the other creatures of God; and we will add, that our condition will be as much better than theirs, as our nature is inore noble and exalted. This surely should satisfy all rational beings. But Paul las much more to say on the glorious prospect before us.
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, 40, 41.
VII. The reference to the different classes of animals (including man as an aniinal) had in view the difference between the bodies of men here, and their bodies hereafter. But the present quotation is to show that the glory of the resurrection state is greater than that of the present. Here, too, the analogical argument is employed. The apostle first makes a general reference to the heavenly or celestial bodies, as compared with the terrestrial. He then names the former, the sun, moon and stars. The general reference authorizes the belief that our future abode will be far more glorious than the present. All the heavenly bodies liere represent the future condition of mankind. When, therefore, these heavenly bodies are expressly spoken of as differing in glory, the natural inference is, that the future is diverse, as well as the present, though far more glorious. This inference can be set aside, only by showing, that the apostle did not make a proper use of his illustration. Can this be shown ?
The common opinion of the foregoing passage, shared by the writer till now, would have been abundantly sustained, if the last of the two verses had been omitted. When the apostle uses all the heavenly bodies to represent the future, he shows clearly that the future is more glorious than the present. Up to this point, he does not recognize any difference in the future life. But when he proceeds to call our attention to the fact, that the sun has one glory, the moon another, and the stars another; and adds that even the stars are not all alike, he either commits an inadvertence, or he authorizes the belief, that the glory of one soul, in the immortal world, will be greater than that of another. Some will shine as the sun ; others as the moon ; and others as the stars ; and one star will differ from another star in glory. This comes as near an infinite variety, as any possible illustration could make it. Our earthly bodies are so various that no two can be found exactly alike — no two, that do not widely differ. This answers and wise, a beneficent purpose, no doubt; and the same must be true of the future.
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. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. 42, 43, 44.
The apostie had dropped the figure of the seed, in order to introduce other illustrations, that, for the time being, answered his purpose better; but now the seed comes into play again. When he says, It is sown, he means of course, The seed is sowI. And as, when he first mentions the seed, it stands for soul and body; so it must, now. The words that introduce the above passage show the same thing. So is the resurrection of the deal. The resurrection of the dead concerns both soul and body. And the word so obliges us to apply the illustration that precedes it to the soul and body both. The glory represented by the heavenly bodies belongs to the immortal state, aiter the soul and body are united. This shows the propriety of the infinite diversity of that state ; for it is a diversity of intellect, of virtue, of disposition and taste with each soul, as well as of the spiritual body, through which the soul acts.
To the end of the 39th verse, the apostle is speaking of the body only; and is answering the question, with what manner of body do they come ? He then proceeds to the other question, How are the dead raised ? But he gives us no clear illustration of the change, till he comes to the 42d verse, and says, 80 also is the resurrection ef the dead.” How far back does the word 80 require us to go ? Evidently to the beginning of the 40th verse. Of course, in showing how the dead are raised, Paul will give us more or less information about the resurrection body. But when he says, so is the resurrection of the dead, it is evident that he is now going to answer the first of the two questions; though incidentally he may say something that has a bearing on the last.
The first thing he says in answer to the question, How are the dead raised ? is, “ It is sown in corruption ; it is raised in incorruption.” This contains nothing concerning the nature of the seed. The corruption, in which the seed is sown, belongs to the soil, and not to the seed, se far as this passage in forms us. In like manner, tlie incorruption in which the seed is raised, belongs, not to the seed but to the new life. We may readily infer, that when the seed separates in the ground; and a part of it remains; and another part rises into a new life, each“ follows its affinity ; " the first mingling wiil the surrounding corruption; the other seeking the incorruption of a new life. What we have said, on this first particular, will enable us to treat the others inore briefly.
The dishonor and glory next mentioned belong, the first to the soil, and the second to the future life of the seed. But let it be obs. rved, that the dishonor does not denoto absolute dishonor, but a lesser glory; for the apostle had said before, “ The glory of the celestial is one ; and the glory of the terrestrial is another.” There is a glory of the stars ; and is not the earth a star ? Dishonor belongs to the earth, and must therefore be a lesser glory; while the glory in which the seed is raised, is a greater glory.
The weakness and power come next. · The field is the world,” in which the seed is sown. There is no reference to