Understanding the Scriptures
|Vain (vv. 2, 14, 17)||Without reason, empty|
|Fallen asleep (v. 6)||Dead|
|Firstfruits (vv. 20, 23)||First to be resurrected|
|Subdued (v. 28)||Made subject|
|Quickened (v. 36)||Given life|
|Quickening spirit (v. 45)||Immortal person with a glorified, perfected body|
1 Corinthians 15:29—Baptism for the Dead
Paul explained that there would have been no reason for the Saints to do baptisms for the dead if there were no resurrection. He then testified that the Resurrection is a reality and that ordinance work in behalf of the dead provides great blessings for them as well as for those who perform the ordinances.
The Prophet Joseph Smith taught: “The Saints have the privilege of being baptized for those of their relatives who are dead, … and who have received the Gospel in the spirit, through the instrumentality of those who have been commissioned to preach to them” (History of the Church, 4:231). He also taught that “those Saints who neglect it in behalf of their deceased relatives, do it at the peril of their own salvation” (History of the Church, 4:426; see also D&C 128:15–18).
1 Corinthians 15:40–42—Celestial, Terrestrial, and Telestial Bodies
Everyone will be resurrected, but we will not all rise from the dead at the same moment or with the same glory. The most righteous will be resurrected first and will serve with Jesus Christ during His millennial reign. The least righteous will be resurrected last. The following chart will help you better understand the order of the Resurrection (see also D&C 88:98–102):
1 Corinthians 15:42–54—“Corruption … Incorruption”
Several times Paul used the word corruption to refer to death and the word incorruption to refer to immortality (see 1 Corinthians 15:42–54). Even though we will receive our same bodies in the Resurrection, they will not be subject to disease, decay, and imperfection, but will instead be glorified, perfected, and immortal (see Alma 11:42–45).
Studying the Scriptures
Do two of the following activities (A–C) as you study 1 Corinthians 15.
Scripture Mastery—1 Corinthians 15:20–22
List a scripture chain that starts at 1 Corinthians 15:20–22. Use your Bible Dictionary, Topical Guide, and the index in your triple combination to find at least five additional scriptures that explain that everyone will be resurrected. You may want to write these cross references in the margin of your scriptures.
Scripture Mastery—1 Corinthians 15:29
Interview someone who has been to the temple to do baptisms for the dead. (If you have had this opportunity you can write about your own experience.) Write answers to the following questions:
What did you enjoy the most about doing baptisms for the dead?
How will your service benefit the dead?
Why do you think baptism for the dead is such an important doctrine?