The Nature Of Our Lord’s Resurrection-Body -- By: Edward Robinson

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 002:6 (May 1845)
Article: The Nature Of Our Lord’s Resurrection-Body
Author: Edward Robinson

The Nature Of Our Lord’s Resurrection-Body

E. Robinson

The inquiry respecting the nature of our Lord’s resurrection-body has at the present day an interest, not only in itself considered, but also from its near relation to several other questions just now before the public mind. The raising up of Jesus is every where spoken of as the “first fruits” of the resurrection from the dead,—as the earnest and pledge and pattern of the future resurrection of the saints.1 If then we can ascertain the character and circumstances of this great fact in our Lord’s history, it may be expected to afford us some aid in obtaining a more clear and defi-

nite apprehension of the great Scripture doctrine of the general resurrection of the dead.

The inquiry before us as to the nature of the body in which our Lord rose, is very closely connected with the history of his resurrection itself. The answer to our inquiry must depend entirely upon the interpretation we give to those passages of Scripture, which narrate the circumstances under which our Lord rose, was seen for forty days, and then ascended to heaven. The witnesses to these great facts in the history of Jesus, witnesses ordained of God, were his apostles and disciples. Their testimony has been made sure unto us; having been recorded by the pen of inspiration in the sacred books of the New Testament; and being confirmed to us also by the institution and continued existence of the Christian church, which is built upon these same “apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner-stone.”2 It is, however, only to this recorded testimony, that we can appeal for all our knowledge of the manner of our Lord’s resurrection and its attendant circumstances. It is only to this testimony,—to the views and opinions and feelings of the apostles and disciples, as made known to us in this record,—that we can go for an answer to the question before us. Neither fanciful speculation nor philosophical theory can here have any place. The simple inquiry is, and can be only, What do the Scriptures teach us as to the views and belief of the apostles and disciples, those witnesses chosen before of God, respecting our Lord’s body, as he showed himself to them during forty days after his resurrection?

On this subject three different opinions have prevailed more or less at various times in the church. Some have held that the body of Christ was changed at the resurrection as to its substance; so that it was in its substance a different and spiritual body. Others have regarded the Lord as having had after the resurrectio...

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