Our Bodies and the Resurrection

Mothers as Co-Creators with God

By Fr. Gregory, May 08, 2021

John 20:19-31

On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them: “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you." And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them: “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” … Eight days later, his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. The doors were shut, but Jesus came and stood among them, and said: "Peace be with you." Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing.” Thomas answered him, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.”

1Cor. 15 20 But the fact is, Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep. 35 But someone will say, “How are the dead raised? And with what kind of body do they come?” 36 You fool! That which you sow does not come to life unless it dies;37 and what you sow is not the body which is to be, but a bare grain, perhaps of wheat or of something else. 38 But God gives it a body as He pleases, and to each seed its own body. 42 So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable/corruptible body, it is raised an imperishable/incorruptible body; 43 it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power;44 it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.

DISORDER AND ORDER. GREGORY OF NYSSA: In the same way, when our nature becomes subject to the disequilibrium and paroxysm of disordered passions, it encounters those conditions that necessarily follow the life of the passions. But when it returns again to the blessedness of an ordered emotive life, it will no longer encounter the consequences of evil. Since whatever was added to human nature from the irrational life was not in us before humanity fell into passion, we shall also leave behind all the conditions that appear along with passion. ON THE SOUL AND THE RESURRECTION.

THE SAME BODY WILL RISE. ORIGEN: In regard to our bodily nature we must understand that there is not one body which we now use in lowliness and corruption and weakness and a different one which we are to use hereafter in incorruption and power and glory. Rather this same body, having cast off the weaknesses of its present existence, will be transformed into a thing of glory and made spiritual, with the result that what was a vessel of dishonor shall itself be purified and become a vessel of honor and a habitation of blessedness. ON FIRST PRINCIPLES 3.6.6.

Adam and Eve received bodies in the image of God. After the Fall, they received mortality symbolized by garments of skin (Gen. 3:21) that are added to them. Their bodies change but re still the same body.

In reverse fashion, Jesus is the first fruits of the dead (1Cor. 15:20). He reveals to us today a glimpse into the mystery of the end. His body is still material – it can be seen and touched and he can eat – but it is spiritualized such that it can pass through walls and move through space like the angels.

This is what awaits us, but first must come death. The bodies we receive back are the same bodies, just transformed. The Fathers speculate that we will know and be known to each other, and that we will most likely take the form of our prime, but include all our scars and wounds, even though they are healed.