Our Resurrection

Our Resurrection

By: Bishop Raphael

“Even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,” (Ephesians 2:5-6 NKJV).

The expressions here, (made us alive, raised us up, made us sit), in the past tense, express what the general human nature has obtained in Christ Jesus our Lord by His death and resurrection.

This is what the Coptic Liturgy proclaims (we were buried with Him, you blessed my nature in You, You raised my first fruit to heaven...).

Saint Ambrose says:

“Through the body (which He took), which is the pledge of our salvation, He made us sit in the heavens. He is the foundation of all, and the head of the Church; in Him, our general nature according to the flesh deserved to sit on the heavenly throne. The body was honored as it found a share in Christ who is God, and indeed all human nature was honored as it found a share in the body. We sit in Him by His taking our physical nature.”

Thus, the resurrection of Christ and His sitting in the heavens as the first fruit were considered as our resurrection and sitting with Him in the heavens. On the one hand, and on the other hand, we truly enjoy this through the resurrection of the soul from the death of sin and its enjoyment of the pledge of heavenly life.

It is clear then that our resurrection with Christ is the resurrection of human nature generally and not our personal resurrection, that resurrection which we receive through baptism, repentance, and the Eucharist, and then in the general resurrection on the last day and sitting with Christ on His throne:

“Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.” (Revelation 20:6 NKJV).

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