SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 6 (EGW)


Chapter 15

6. Sacred Facts Immortalized—After His resurrection, Christ did not show Himself to any save His followers, but testimony in regard to His resurrection was not wanting. It came from various sources, from the five hundred who assembled in Galilee to see their risen Lord. This testimony could not be quenched. The sacred facts of Christ's resurrection were immortalized (Manuscript 115, 1897). 6BC 1092.1

Countenance as the Face of God—After His resurrection, Christ met with His disciples in Galilee. At the time appointed, about five hundred disciples were assembled on the mountainside. Suddenly Jesus stood among them. No one could tell whence or how He came. Many who were present had never before seen Him; but in His hands and feet they beheld the marks of the crucifixion; His countenance was as the face of God, and when they saw Him they worshiped Him (Letter 115, 1904). 6BC 1092.2

9. See EGW on Acts 9:1-4. 6BC 1092.3

20 (Leviticus 23:10, 11). Christ the Antitypical Wave-Sheaf—It was to the glory of God that the Prince of life should be the first fruits, the antitype of the typical wavesheaf. “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.” ... 6BC 1092.4

Christ was the first fruits of them that slept. This very scene, the resurrection of Christ from the dead, was observed in type by the Jews at one of their sacred feasts.... They came up to the Temple when the first fruits had been gathered in, and held a feast of thanksgiving. The first fruits of the harvest crop were sacredly dedicated to the Lord. That crop was not to be appropriated for the benefit of man. The first ripe fruit was dedicated as a thank offering to God. He was acknowledged as the Lord of the harvest. When the first heads of grain ripened in the field, they were carefully gathered, and when the people went up to Jerusalem, they were presented to the Lord, waving the ripened sheaf before Him as a thank offering. After this ceremony the sickle could be put to the wheat, and it could be gathered into sheaves (Manuscript 115, 1897). 6BC 1092.5

20, 42-52 (ch. 13:12; Romans 8:11). A Sample of the Final Resurrection—The resurrection of Jesus was a sample of the final resurrection of all who sleep in Him. The risen body of the Saviour, His deportment, the accents of His speech, were all familiar to His followers. In like manner will those who sleep in Jesus rise again. We shall know our friends even as the disciples knew Jesus. Though they may have been deformed, diseased, or disfigured in this mortal life, yet in their resurrected and glorified body their individual identity will be perfectly preserved, and we shall recognize, in the face radiant with the light shining from the face of Jesus, the lineaments of those we love (The Spirit of Prophecy 3:219). 6BC 1092.6

22, 45 (Romans 5:12-19; see EGW on John 1:1-3, 14). Sinner Given a Second Trial—As representative of the fallen race, Christ passed over the same ground on which Adam stumbled and fell. By a life of perfect obedience to God's law, Christ redeemed man from the penalty of Adam's disgraceful fall. Man has violated God's law. Only for those who return to their allegiance to God, only for those who obey the law that they have violated, will the blood of Christ avail. Christ will never become a party to sin. Bearing the penalty of the law, He gives the sinner another chance, a second trial. He opens a way whereby the sinner can be reinstated in God's favor. Christ bears the penalty of man's past transgressions, and by imparting to man His righteousness, makes it possible for man to keep God's holy law (Manuscript 126, 1901). 6BC 1092.7

(Revelation 1:8; 22:13.) The Alpha and Omega—When the students of prophecy shall set their hearts to know the truths of Revelation, they will realize what an importance is attached to this search. Christ Jesus is the Alpha and the Omega, the Genesis of the Old Testament, and the Revelation of the New. Both meet together in Christ. Adam and God are reconciled by the obedience of the second Adam, who accomplished the work of overcoming the temptations of Satan and redeeming Adam's disgraceful failure and fall. 6BC 1092.8

The two Adams will meet in Paradise and embrace each other, while the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet, and all who have refused the opportunities and privileges given to them at such infinite cost, and have not returned to their loyalty, will be shut out of Paradise (Manuscript 33, 1897). 6BC 1093.1

42-52 (ch. 13:12). Personality Preserved in a New Body—Our personal identity is preserved in the resurrection, though not the same particles of matter or material substance as went into the grave. The wondrous works of God are a mystery to man. The spirit, the character of man, is returned to God, there to be preserved. In the resurrection every man will have his own character. God in His own time will call forth the dead, giving again the breath of life, and bidding the dry bones live. The same form will come forth, but it will be free from disease and every defect. It lives again bearing the same individuality of features, so that friend will recognize friend. There is no law of God in nature which shows that God gives back the same identical particles of matter which composed the body before death. God shall give the righteous dead a body that will please Him. 6BC 1093.2

Paul illustrates this subject by the kernel of grain sown in the field. The planted kernel decays, but there comes forth a new kernel. The natural substance in the grain that decays is never raised as before, but God giveth it a body as it hath pleased Him. A much finer material will compose the human body, for it is a new creation, a new birth. It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body (Manuscript 76, 1900). 6BC 1093.3

51-55 (Isaiah 65:17; Matthew 25:21; 1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17; Revelation 5:12; 21:4). The Finishing Touch of Immortality—We have a living, risen Saviour. He burst the fetters of the tomb after He had lain there three days, and in triumph. He proclaimed over the rent sepulcher of Joseph, “I am the resurrection and the life.” And He is coming. Are we getting ready for Him? Are we ready so that if we shall fall asleep, we can do so with hope in Jesus Christ? Are you laboring for the salvation of your brothers and sisters? The Life-giver is soon to come. The Life-giver is coming to break the fetters of the tomb. He is to bring forth the captives and proclaim, “I am the resurrection and the life.” There stands the risen host. The last thought was of death and its pangs. The last thoughts they had were of the grave and the tomb, but now they proclaim, “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” The pangs of death were the last things they felt. “O death, where is thy sting?” The last thing they acknowledged was the pangs of death. When they awake the pain is all gone.... 6BC 1093.4

Here they stand, and the finishing touch of immortality is put upon them, and they go up to meet their Lord in the air. The gates of the city of God swing back upon their hinges, and the nations that have kept the truth enter in. There are the columns of angels on either side, and the ransomed of God walk in through the cherubims and seraphims. Christ bids them welcome and puts upon them His benediction. “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: ... enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” What is that joy? He sees of the travail of His soul, and is satisfied. 6BC 1093.5

That is what we labor for. Here is one, who in the night season we pleaded with God on his behalf. There is one that we talked with on his dying bed, and he hung his helpless soul upon Jesus. Here is one who was a poor drunkard. We tried to get his eyes fixed upon Him who is mighty to save and we told him that Christ could give him the victory. There are the crowns of immortal glory upon their heads, and then the redeemed cast their glittering crowns at the feet of Jesus; and then the angelic choir strikes the note of victory, and the angels in the two columns take up the song, and the redeemed host join as though they had been singing the song on the earth, and they have been. 6BC 1093.6

Oh, what music! There is not an inharmonious note. Every voice proclaims, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain.” He sees of the travail of His soul, and is satisfied. Do you think anyone there will take time to tell of his trials and terrible difficulties? “The former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.” “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes” (Manuscript 18, 1894). 6BC 1093.7