Firstborn Sonship of Christ



      This chapter will address the Gospel of Christ, and will emphasize the resurrection birth of Christ as the blessed hope of those who qualify by grace through faith for the firstborn sonship of Christ. This resurrection birth of the faithful covenant people will be an instantaneous meta-morphosis of the body, and spirit, into the exact likeness of the divine resurrection birth of the body of Christ, Phi 3:21; Col 2:9-10; 1Co 15:44-54.


      1 "Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the Gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand,
      2 "By which also you are being saved, if you are holding fast that word which I preached to you – unless you believed in vain,"
1Co 15:1-2.
      16 "For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God into salvation to everyone who is constantly believing, to the Jew first and also for the Greek.
      17 "For in it the righteousness of God is being revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, ‘The righteous one shall live out of faith,'"
Rom 1:16-17.
      9 "And be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the Law, but that which is by means the faith of Christ, the out of God righteousness based upon the faith," Phi 3:9.
      A definition of the Gospel includes:

1. The Fall of Man Into a State of Sin and Death.

      This state of sin and death and its eternal punishment is the occasion for the need of salvation. Adam's sin has given birth to countless numbers of every kind of sin beyond human imagination, Gen 2 & 3; Rom 1:21-32.

2. The Inability of Man to Save, Redeem, Himself.

      The sin nature is incurable. We can control our sin nature to some extent, but to eradicate the sin nature or give birth to children without the sin nature is beyond the reach of mankind, Job 14:4; Jer 10:23; 13:23.

3. The Virgin Birth of the Messiah.

      The Scriptures reveal that Christ was born without the sin nature by being born of a virgin, Isa 7:14; Mt 1:2, which God was able to do by His infinite knowledge and power. Immediately after Adam sinned, God promised that the Seed of the woman would perform the necessary work of redemption as previously planned for the purpose of demonstrating His love, compassion, mercy, forbearance, justice, etc., Gen 3:15; Rom 9:22-23.

4. The Sinless Life of the Messiah.

      To live a sinless life, Christ first had to be born of a virgin; but He still had to live a normal human life without sin, "without blemish," in order to be man's substitute in God's redemption purpose. God purposed that Christ, the Son of God: 1) be born into the human family and become "one" with mankind, Phi 2:6-11; 2) demonstrate His divine attributes of love, compassion, mercy, forbearance, justice, faithfulness, etc., toward sinful human beings, Rom 9:22-23; and 3) bring a great host of mankind into a divine "oneness" state of being with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Jn 17:21-23; Rev 7:9-17.

5. The Earthly Ministry of the Messiah.

      The Old Testament prophesied that the Messiah would have a personal ministry in which He would 1) be ordained after the pattern of Aaron's ordination, Lev 8; Isa 42:1; 61:1; Mt 3:13-17, but His priesthood would be after the order of Melchizedek's priesthood, Heb 7; 2) perform many mighty works which would aid to authenticate His Messiahship, Isa 42 thru 53; 61:1-3; Act 2:2, 3) establish the local church as an agency for grafting Gentiles into Israel as the covenant nation, Rom 11:11-32; 1Pe 2:5,9), 4) confirm the New Covenant with Israel, required by the new priesthood, Ps 110:1-4; Jer 31:31-34; Heb 5:10; 7; 9:16-17, and 5) offer Himself as the sin offering under the New Covenant, Heb 9:11-26.

6. Death, Burial, and Resurrection of the Messiah.

      This is the heart of the Gospel and includes all the Scriptures, which present the Gospel in prophetic utterances and various types. For instance, 1) circumcision, as in baptism, represented the "circumcision of Christ," Col 2:11-13; Rom 2:28-29; 2) the Passover, as in the Lord's Supper, represented the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, 1Co 5:7; 11:23-29; 3) eating the sacrifices, unleavened bread, and showbread represented the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ and His faithful covenant people; and 4) the Gospel was preached beforehand to Abraham in progressive justification, Gen 15:6; Rom 4; Ja 2:17-25, where God's divine righteousness was and is credited to the faithful covenant people to be literally received in a divine birth when Christ returns, Rom 4:22-25; 2Co 5:21; Phi 3:9-11; Rev 19:7-8; et al.

7. The Current Heavenly Ministry of the Messiah.

      Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father in heaven, interceding for the faithful covenant people. He is interceding only for the twelve tribes of Israel whose names were on the breastplate and on the two onyx stones, which are also represented by the twelve loaves of showbread, Ex 28; Lev 24:5-9. The twelve tribes include the engrafted Gentiles, Rom 2:28-29; 11:11-22; Eph 2:10-16. The unfaithful covenant people are cut off from Christ, and therefore from the covenants, and will receive no intercessions from Christ as High Priest after once being cut off, Jn 15:1-6; Gal 4:21 thru 5:5.

8. Covenant Disciplinary Training of the Covenant People.

      This covenant discipline as mentioned in Heb 12 and throughout the Scriptures is necessary in order to qualify for the "life," "Holiness," and "righteousness" of God, Heb 12:9-11. Observe that we must "seek" God's righteousness, Mt 6:33; et al, and grace must reign through righteousness into divine life, Rom 5:21; 6:22-23; 8:6,13, 23-25. If we do not overcome by grace through faith, we will not be partakers of Christ, Heb 3:14 (6-19). If we walk after the flesh, Christ will intercede for us, but if we continue and persist in walking after the flesh, we will be cut off from Christ, His intercessions, and all benefits within the covenants.

9. The Return of Christ.
      The Gospel is not only the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, but includes the life, death, burial, and resurrection of the faithful covenant people together with Christ. This is precisely what 1Co 15:1-4,29-58 teaches. We will emphasize that the Gospel also includes the virgin birth and the sinless, tested, and approved life of Christ. Furthermore, the Gospel also requires the same tested and approved (dokimos) life of the faithful covenant people – though we are all sinners, 1Co 15:1-2,29-58; Rom 1:16-17.

10. Eternal Judgment.

      The Gospel also requires eternal punishment for all the unfaithful saved as well as the unsaved. This is seen generally in many scriptures, Rom 1:16-32; 2:16 (1-29); Mt 13:25; Jn 15:1-6, but there will be "nations" of saved people on the new earth, Rev 21:24,26; 22:2. The Millennium is a day, a thousand years, of "sabbath rest" for the faithful covenant people, Gen 2:1-3; Ex 20:8-11; Isa 11:10 (1-10); Rom 8:19-22; Heb 4:1-1; however, the Millennium will be one of punishment for the nations of unfaithful saved people, Isa 66:24; Mt 5:22,29-30; 10:28; 18:8-9; 25:31-46; Mk 9:42-50; et al. This punishment will have its eternal application – see later study on Gehenna.
      1Co 15 is not only the resurrection chapter of the Bible, it is also the Gospel chapter of the Bible. It does not give all of the details of the Gospel, but emphasizes the heart and divine essence of the Gospel. The Gospel is the good news of salvation not only from hell, but also of salvation into a unique and divine state of oneness with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

11. The Gospel Provides for the Salvation of Many Nations of Servant Sons.

      21 "For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead.
      22 "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive,"
1Co 15:21-22; 1Jn 2:2; Jn 3:16; Rev 21:23-26; 22:1-2; Gal 4:21-31; 5:1-4; Heb 12:8.
      From here we reflect back to God's initial purpose in the creation of all things.
      22 "What if God, willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath prepared for destruction,
      23 "And that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory,"
Rom 9:22-23. See also Act 2:23; Eph 1:4-5,11; 1Pe 1:18-20.
      God was willing to demonstrate the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy and His wrath on the vessels of wrath. God had already prepared wrath to demonstrate His power and justice upon fallen angels obviously before He created them, Rom 9:22-23; 2Pe 2:4; Jude 6. And before He created man, God had already prepared wrath to reveal His power and justice upon the unsaved and upon the unfaithful saved with whom He is demonstrating His forbearance, Eph 1:11; 2Ti 1:9; 1Pe 1:18-20; 2Pe 2:4-10.
      Likewise, God had purposed beforehand to demonstrate His mercy upon the vessels of mercy, whom He had prepared for glory as firstborn sons together with Christ. Christ was as a Lamb slain before and from the foundation of the world, and the names of the saints were already written in the book of life, Act 2:23; Eph 1:4-5; 1Pe 1:18-20; Rev 13:8; et al.
      Attention will be called again and again to the very important allegory of Abraham, Sarah, Hagar, Ishmael, and Isaac, Gal 4:19-31, and the profound application of the allegory, Gal 5:4. See also Heb 12. We must not disregard the allegory and its direct application to the churches of Galatia; which, in turn, requires its application to all the Lord's churches everywhere throughout the church age. We hope to give ample coverage of the nations and the unfaithful saved in a later study on Gehenna.

12. The Gospel Provides for the Salvation of the Material Universe.

      17 "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved," Jn 3:17.
      19 "For the earnest expectation of the creation is eagerly waiting for the revealing of the sons of God.
      20 "For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope;
      21 "Because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the liberty of the glory of the children of God.
      22 "For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now,"
Rom 8:19-22; Mt 19:28.
      A curse was placed upon the earth and on the material universe when Adam sinned, Gen 3:17-19. The creation is personified here as eagerly waiting for the liberty of the glory of the firstborn sons of God. The birthright of the firstborn provided for not only "the dew of heaven and the fatness of the earth," Gen 27:27-28, but also for the inheritance and rulership over all creation, including the angels, Ps 8:3-6; Heb 1:2,14; 2:5-13; Rom 4:13; 8:17,32; 1Co 3:21-23. Adam had this promised to him, without the curse, before he sinned, Gen 1:26-30, which promise obviously would have been realized had he eaten the fruit of the tree of life, Gen 2.
      The Gospel provides for the faithful covenant people to share Christ's firstborn sonship and to inherit all things together with Him, Rom 4:13; 8:17,32; 1Co 3:21-23. The most important part of that inheritance, infinitely so, is the fullness of God; that is, all the attributes of the divine nature, Eph 1:22-23; 3:19; Col 1:19; 2:9-10; Jn 10:30-36; 14:8-11; 17:21-23, with the exception of infinity in any of them.

13. The Gospel Requires the Firstborn Sons to Hold Fast to the End in Order to Qualify for the Firstborn Sonship.

      1 "Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the Gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand,
      2 "By which also you are being saved, IF you are holding fast that word which I preached to you – unless you believed in vain.
      3 "For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
      4 "And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures,"
1Co 15:1-4.
      The briefest statement of the Gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ; which, however, requires the whole Bible to provide the whys and wherefores concerning the virgin birth, sinless life, personal ministry, death, burial, and resurrection birth of Christ. This chapter, 1Co 15, deals primarily with three major factors within the Gospel: a) the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ and of all mankind, b) the requirement of holding fast to the end to qualify for the firstborn sonship, and c) the specific divine nature of the new birth resurrection of Christ.
      The first half of the chapter, 1Cor 15, concerns the necessity of the resurrection of Christ, and that there will be a resurrection of all mankind in the future.

14. The Gospel Provides for a New Earth in Which Righteousness Is Dwelling.

      13 "Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells," 2Pe 3:13.
      The new heavens and new earth are also mentioned in Isa 65:17; 66:22; and Rev 21:1. The curse God placed on the earth in Gen 3:17-19 will be removed during the Millennial reign of Christ, Isa 11:1-10; 65:25; Rom 8:18-22. Christ will give the earth "rest," "and His rest will be glorious," Isa 65:10; Rom 8:18-22. If the new earth after the Millennium should be a lake of fire, with sin, death, hell, the devil, fallen angelic demons, and all the defiant, idolatrous, and unrepentant sinners of all ages surrounding the New Jerusalem and populating the new earth, that would be terrible regression rather than a progressive renovation or creation into a new, better, peaceful, and righteous state of existence for the new earth. More on this in a later study on Gehenna.


      1 "Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the Gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you have stood,
      2 "By which (Gospel) also you are being saved, IF you are holding fast that word which I preached to you – unless you believed in vain,"
1Co 15:1-2.
      These words were written to the church in Corinth – to saved and properly baptized church members. For the past few centuries we have heard the security of the believer preached in such a way that the saved person has no need for working out his salvation with fear and trembling. However, Paul boldly states that the Gospel, the salvation of this chapter, 1Co 15, is a lifetime process of holding fast by grace through faith, 1Co 15:10. This Gospel salvation is a divine birth of this flesh body into a divine, heavenly, spirit body, 1Co 15:44-54, which birth is for the faithful covenant people only.
      Paul pleaded with the Corinthians and firmly warned them that they must continue holding fast to the doctrine of Christ,the Gospel, specifically, the resurrection in this case, 1Co 15:1-2. See also 2Jn 9-11, in order to qualify for the new birth when Christ returns, 1Co 15:1-2,29-58; Phi 3:7-14,21; 1Pe 1:3-9.


      1 "Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the Gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand,
      2 "By which also you are being saved, IF you are holding fast that word which I preached to you - unless you believed in vain,"
1Co 15:2.
      11 "Therefore, whether it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed," 1Co 15:11.
      Verse 1 says the Corinthians had received the Gospel and had stood fast in the Gospel. And verse 11 says the Corinthians had believed. Paul had initially preached to them, they had believed, were properly baptized, and had stood fast in the Gospel, though they were now in great danger. And if they should make shipwreck of faith, 1Ti 1:18-20, then their believing and standing fast in the Lord so far would be in vain. All their "by grace through faith" righteous works would be wiped out and would not be remembered before God, Eze 3:20; 18:24; 33:12-13; 2Jn 8; Rev 3:11.


      29 "Otherwise, what will they do who are baptized for the dead, if the dead do not rise at all? Why then are they baptized for the dead?
      30 "And why do we stand in jeopardy every hour?
      31 "I affirm, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.
      32 "If, in the manner of men, I have fought with beasts at Ephesus, what advantage is it to me? If the dead do not rise, ‘Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!'
      33 "Do not be deceived: ‘Evil company corrupts good habits.'
      34 "Awake to righteousness, and do not sin; for some do not have the knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame,"
1Co 15:29-34.
      Baptism pictures, therefore, preaches, the resurrection of the dead – in Adam all of mankind die, in Christ, by means of Christ's death and resurrection, all mankind will be raised and judged, 1Co 15:22. In baptism we accepted God's covenant, the New Covenant, and vowed to live according to the doctrine of Christ. We will thereby endeavor to daily bear about in our bodies the dying of Christ that the life of Christ may be manifest in our daily lives. This is done in order to be raised in His likeness of His resurrection, Rom 6:5; 2Co 3:18; 4:7-12; Phi 3:7-14,21.
      One's faithfulness is determined by His "faith works" while he is alive in this life. Our prayers, our sacrificial service, our example, and our working on behalf of someone else will be used by the Holy Spirit to convince and inspire others only as long as they are alive. Once they die, their destiny is settled, and there is nothing we can do to help them. Only while they still live, our prayers, example, etc., will be used by the Holy Spirit to aid them toward repentance, faithful service, and greater faithfulness all around. Furthermore, no prayers or efforts by those who are already dead will help those who are still alive, Lk 16:19-31. Our destiny and eternal state of being is determined by what we do in this life only.
      Therefore, this whole context, 1Co 15, goes together with "baptizing for the dead," and obviously has its application to the new birth resurrection of our bodies into a divine state of being when Christ returns; that is, if we are fervent and faithful within the Gospel in this life. Standing in jeopardy every hour, dying daily to our old man, fighting a good fight of faith, evil company corrupts good habits, awake to righteousness and do not sin, some do not have proper knowledge of the Gospel – these expressions, of course, must be associated with being "baptized for the dead." All these are done in view of the hope and assurance of the resurrection of the dead and the divine benefits promised to those who believe and obey, Heb 11.
      The expression "all in all," 1Co 15:28, appears to be the immediate cause for the "baptized for the dead" context that follows, 1Co 15:29-34. Observe that the expressions, "all in all," "the firstborn from the dead," "the fullness of God," and "the fullness of deity" are associated with the head or authority over all of God's creation, Eph 1:20-23; Col 1:15-19; 2:9-10; Rev 1:5, as we see in the previous verses of 1Co 15:24-28.
      The heart of 1Co 15 is both the resurrection birth of Christ and our standing fast in the Gospel in order to qualify for the resurrection birth into the likeness of Christ's deified human body, 1Co 15; Phi 3:7-14,21; 2Co 3:17-18; 4:7-12,17; Col 2:9 thru 3:10. We will continue to show that this is obviously the theme of 1Co 15, of the Gospel, of the New Testament, and also of the Old Testament. The resurrection birth of Christ's human body is the grand finale of all the sacred Scriptures – this is the Gospel of the Son of God, who is still also the Son of Man, Dan 7:13-14; Mt 16:27-28; 19:28; 26:64; Mk 14:62; et al.
      This should aid to introduce the subject of baptism which symbolically and metaphorically puts the believer into the church, into the body of Christ, into the crucified, dead, buried, raised, and deified state of Christ's glorified body, Rom 6:2-13; 1Co 12:12-13; Gal 3:27; Col 2:9-21; 3:1-10. This puts the faithful covenant people into the position of qualifying for the firstborn sonship of Christ to rule all of God's creation jointly with Christ. This is all a part of the Gospel.
      The Gospel begins with God's righteous will and desire to demonstrate His holy state of being – His knowledge, power, presence, and infinite diversity; His immeasurable love, compassion, mercy, and forbearance; His justice, judgment, and faithfulness, Rom 9:18-23; 11:28-36.
      So God placed a garden in Eden and gave Adam a choice to obey or disobey. God also gave Satan authority to tempt Adam through his beautiful wife, and Adam sinned by choosing his wife above God's word. Eve was deceived, but Adam was well aware of what he was doing, 1Ti 2:14. God knew this would happen and had already prepared a Lamb slain from and before the foundation of the world, 1Pe 1:18-20; Eph 1:4-5. God arranged this that He may demonstrate His divine attributes of love, compassion, mercy, justice, etc., in giving His Son, Jn 1:1-3,14,18; 3:16-17; 1Jn 4:9, and in preparing a special people who, by His grace, choose to suffer with Christ, Rom 8:17; 2Co 4:7-12,17; Phi 3:7-14,21.
      Suffering with Christ, in turn, is in order to be conformed to the divine image of Christ and thereby be able to show forth God's praises, His divine attributes, Isa 43:21; 1Pe 2:9, in all the ages to come. God's "praises" refer first to His attributes of deity, and then of course to His many mighty works in creation and through the ages.


      44 "It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.
      45 "And so it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living being.' The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.
      46 However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual.
      47 "The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven.
      48 "As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly.
      49 "And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.
      50 "Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption,"
1Co 15:44-50. See also Col 1:15,18; Rev 1:5; Act 13:29-33; Heb 1:5-6; 5:5.
      Christ received a mere flesh body from Mary through the virgin birth. Christ's flesh body could become hungry and thirsty, become tired and weak, required rest and sleep, could bleed, be made sin, and die. The life of that body was in the blood, as in all the descendants of the first Adam. However, the Scriptures say there are two bodies: a natural or mere flesh body and a spiritual or divine spirit body. In His resurrection, Christ became the second Adam by creating the new spirit, divine, heavenly body. The life of the new body is in the divine nature, divine life, of God, so that Christ now possesses a body that is both human and divine: it is still a flesh and bone body, Lk 24:39, but it is predominantly a divine, heavenly, spirit body, governed entirely by the divine nature, Col 2:9.
      This instant metamorphosis change from a mere human body into a divine body with all the divine attributes of deity in it, Col 2:9, was precisely a divine birth of Christ's human body into a new divine spirit body, Jn 3:1-8; 1Co 15:44-50; 1Pe 1:3-5; et al. This new birth is symbolized in the ordinance of proper water baptism , Jn 3:5; 13:8-10; 1Co 6:11; Eph 5:26; Titus 3:5; Heb 10:22.
      It is on the basis of this metaphor, by which the church is called the deified, glorified, body of Christ, that the church received the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, Jn 7:39; Gal 4:1-7; Rom 8:23. Observe first in Rom 8:23 that "adoption" is called "redemption of the body." Observe also in these passages, Jn 7:39; Gal 4:4-5; Rom 8:23, that the church, the disciples, could not receive the Holy Spirit until Christ was "glorified."
      After Christ's body was glorified, the church, therefore the members of the church, could and did receive the Spirit because the bodies of the church members were then and are now counted as crucified, dead, buried, and raised in glory, defied, together with and as members of the deified body of Christ. The church therefore being counted as the glorified body of Christ, could receive the indwelling ministry of the Holy Spirit. This is true because the Holy Spirit dwells only with deity, only in those who are deified – analyze the three passages carefully.


      51 "Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
      52 "In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
      53 "For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
      54 "So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory,'"
1Co 15:51-54.
      21 "Who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself," Phi 3:21.
      The flesh, human body of Christ was born again when it was raised out of the grave. This is a fact established by the Scriptures, Col 1:18; Rev 1:5; Act 13:29-33; Heb 1:5-6; 5:5. This birth was accomplished by Christ's human, flesh body being thoroughly imbued with the fullness of deity, the full essence of the divine nature, in His resurrection, 1Co 15:44-50; Col 2:9. When Christ returns, the bodies of all the faithful covenant people will undergo a metamorphosis from a mere human flesh body into a body fashioned into the same fullness of deity that Christ's human, now divine, body possesses, Phi 3:7-14, 20-21; Col 2:9 thru 3:10; 2Co 3:18; 4:7-12,17; 5:1-5,16-17; Eph 2:10-16; 4:22-24; 1:22-24; 3:19; Jn 10:30-36; 14:8-11; 17:21-23.
      The bodies of all the faithful covenant people will undergo the same divine metamorphosis in the resurrection that Christ's body underwent in His resurrection. God is able to change our vile bodies into the same divine image of glory that Christ's body now possesses, Phi 3:21. Paul counted all things as loss by grace through faith in order to gain Christ and be found in His likeness in the better resurrection, Phi 3:7-14,21.
      35 "Women received their dead raised to life again: and others (men and women) were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection," Heb 11:35.


      57 "But thanks be to God, who is constantly giving us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
      58 "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord,"
1Co 15:57-58.
      God is constantly giving us the victory as we are holding fast to the words of the Gospel. The Scriptures inform us over and over dozens of times that we are in a training status. God through His Word, through the covenants, is meticulously training us every moment of the day in everything that happens to us. The training qualifies us for the firstborn sonship of Christ, that we may inherit all creation, even the fullness of God, jointly with Christ.
      This inheritance is the birthright of Christ who is the firstborn of God from the dead. The resurrection birth of Christ is the heart of the Gospel. The resurrection birth of the faithful covenant people when Christ returns is also the heart of the Gospel. That the angels, in all their glory and power, will be ministers of those who inherit this resurrection new birth salvation, is a part of the Gospel good news for God's glory and for the faithful covenant people. The redemption of the world and many nations of servant sons, who will not possess the divine nature, is also a part of the Gospel of Christ.


1. Give a summary definition of the Gospel, as indicated in the 10 major factors in the beginning of this chapter. 1Co 15:1-4.

2. The Gospel applies to the entire Christian life. Explain how this is true. 1Co 15:1-4,10,29-58; Phi 1:27; 2:19-22; 4:3.

3. The righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith in the Gospel. Describe how this is done. Rom 1:16-17.

4. Define the expression, "The just shall life by faith," Rom 1:16-17; etc.

5. Summarize how the Gospel provides for the redemption of creation from the curse, Ps 2:8-12; 8:3-6; Rom 8:19-22; Heb 2:5-8.

6. Summarize God's purpose in creating the nations, Deu 26:16-19; Ps 2:7-12; Rev 2:26-27; 21:24.

7. Paul warned saved and properly baptized church members of believing in vain, 1Co 15:1-2. What does it mean to "believe into Christ in vain?"

8. What is the destiny, God's predestination, of those who truly believe into the body of Christ, but then fall from their own steadfastness? 1Co 15:1-2,29-33; 2Pe 3:15-17; Gal 4:21 thru 5:5; 2Jn 8-11.

9. What does "baptized for the dead" mean? 1Co 15:29.

10. When a flesh body is born of flesh it is still a flesh body. But when a flesh body is born of the Holy Spirit, it is a spirit body, Jn 3:6-8. Explain the change from the natural body to the Divine body, 1Co 15:44-54; Phi 3:21; Jn 3:5-8.