1 Now, brothers, I would have you know the gospel I once preached to you, the gospel you received, the gospel in which you have your footing, 2 the gospel by which you are saved ??provided you adhere to my statement of it ??unless indeed your faith was all haphazard. 3 First and foremost, I passed on to you what I had myself received, namely, that Christ died for our sins as the scriptures had said, 4 that he was buried, that he rose on the third day as the scriptures had said, 5 and that he was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve; 6 after that, he was seen by over five hundred brothers all at once, the majority of whom survive to this day, though some have died; 7 after that, he was seen by James, then by all the apostles, 8 and finally he was seen by myself, by this so-called 'abortion' of an apostle.
9 For I am the very least of the apostles, unfit to bear the name of apostle, since I persecuted the church of God. 10 But by God's grace I am what I am. The grace he showed me did not go for nothing; no, I have done far more work than all of them ??though it was not I but God's grace at my side. 11 At any rate, whether I or they have done most, such is what we preach, such is what you believed.
12 Now if we preach that Christ rose from the dead, how can certain individuals among you assert that 'there is no such thing as a resurrection of the dead'? 13 If 'there is no such thing as a resurrection from the dead,' then even Christ did not rise; 14 and if Christ did not rise, then our preaching has gone for nothing, and your faith has gone for nothing too. 15 Besides, we are detected bearing false witness to God by affirming of him that he raised Christ ??whom he did not raise, if after all dead men never rise. 16 For if dead men never rise, Christ did not rise either; 17 and if Christ did not rise, your faith is futile, you are still in your sins. 18 More than that: those who have slept the sleep of death in Christ have perished after all. 19 Ah, if in this life we have nothing but a mere hope in Christ, we are of all men to be pitied most!
20 But it is not so! Christ did rise from the dead, he was the first to be reaped of those who sleep in death. 21 For since death came by man, by man came also resurrection from the dead; 22 as all die in Adam, so shall all be made alive in Christ. 23 But each in his own division: ??Christ the first to be reaped; after that, all who belong to Christ, at his arrival. 24 Then comes the end, when he hands over his royal power to God the Father, after putting down all other rulers, all other authorities and powers. 25 For he must reign until all his foes are put under his feet. 26 (Death is the last foe to be put down.) 27 For God has put everything under his feet. When it is said that everything has been put under him, plainly that excludes Him who put everything under him; 28 and when everything is put under him, then the Son himself will be put under Him who put everything under him, so that God may be everything to everyone.
29 Otherwise, if there is no such thing as a resurrection, what is the meaning of people getting baptized on behalf of their dead? If dead men do not rise at all, why do people get baptized on their behalf? 30 Yes, and why am I myself in danger every hour? 31 (Not a day but I am at death's door! I swear it by my pride in you, brothers, through Christ Jesus our Lord.) 32 What would it avail me that, humanly speaking, I 'fought with wild beasts' at Ephesus? If dead men do not rise, let us eat and drink, for we will be dead to-morrow! 33 Make no mistake about this: 'bad company is the ruin of good character.' 34 Get back to your sober senses and avoid sin, for some of you ??and I say this to your shame ??some of you are insensible to God.
35 But, someone will ask, 'how do the dead rise? What kind of body have they when they come?' 36 Foolish man! What you sow never comes to life unless it dies. 37 And what you sow is not the body that is to be; it is a mere grain of wheat, for example, or some other seed. 38 God gives it a body as he pleases, gives each kind of seed a body of its own. 39 Flesh is not all the same; there is human flesh, there is flesh of beasts, flesh of birds, and flesh of fish. 40 There are heavenly bodies and also earthly bodies, but the splendour of the heavenly is one thing and the splendour of the earthly is another. 41 There is a splendour of the sun and a splendour of the moon and a splendour of the stars ??for one star differs from another in splendour. 42 So with the resurrection of the dead: what is sown is mortal, what rises is immortal; 43 sown inglorious, it rises in glory; sown in weakness, it rises in power; 44 sown an animate body, it rises a spiritual body. As there is an animate body, so there is a spiritual body. 45 Thus it is written, 'The first man, Adam, became an animate being, the last Adam a life-giving Spirit'; 46 but the animate, not the spiritual, comes first, and only then the spiritual.
47 Man the first is from the earth, material; Man the second is from heaven. 48 As Man the material is, so are the material; as Man the heavenly is, so are the heavenly. 49 Thus, as we have borne the likeness of material Man, so we are to bear the likeness of the heavenly Man.
50 I tell you this, my brothers, flesh and blood cannot inherit the Realm of God, nor can the perishing inherit the imperishable. 51 Here is a secret truth for you: not all of us are to die, but all of us are to be changed ??52 changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet-call. The trumpet will sound, the dead will rise imperishable, and we shall be changed. 53 For this perishing body must be invested with the imperishable, and this mortal body invested with immortality; 54 and when this mortal body has been invested with immortality, then the saying of Scripture will be realized, Death is swallowed up in victory. 55 O Death, where is your victory? O Death, where is your sting? 56 -- 57 The victory is ours, thank God! He makes it ours by our Lord Jesus Christ.
58 Well then, my beloved brothers, hold your ground, immovable; abound in work for the Lord at all times, for you may be sure that in the Lord your labour is never thrown away.