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Will We Have Bodies In Heaven?
Andy Bustanoby
(C) 2008

Some Christians do not believe that we will have bodies in heaven but 
that we will exist as body-less spirits.  There are three things that 
have directed my thinking on this.

1)  The resurrection of Jesus.  In 1 Corinthians 15:20-23, Christ's 
resurrection is called "the firstfruits" of those who have fallen asleep.
"Firstfruits" is an analogy from farming.  

If I'm making my living raising apples, I'm going to be very interested
in the "firstfruits" in springtime. By that I mean, every crop has fruit
that ripens early--the firstfruit.  It is an indicator of what the rest 
of the crop will look like.  So it is with the resurrection of Jesus, 
the firstfruit of those who have died.  The rest of us will be like Him.

After His resurrection, Jesus invited Thomas to prove He was truly back
from the dead by touching Him (John 20:27).   He met the disciples by 
the seaside, and invited them to a breakfast of bread and fish (John 
21:12-14).  The implication is that He ate with them, further showing 
the reality of a new body.

2)  Revelation chapters six and seven.  There we have the "tribulation 
saints," believers who died during the tribulation and were resurrected.  
Note several things:

  * They wear robes (Rev. 6:11).
  * They have real hands in which they hold palms (Rev. 7:9.
  * They have voices (Rev. 7:10).
  * They have faces (Rev. 7:11).

3)  The meaning of "spiritual" or "heavenly" body in 1 Corinthians 15:35-50.
This seems to suggest that it is something immaterial since it is 
"spiritual" or "heavenly."

If we believe in the resurrection of Christ and the existence of the 
material New Jerusalem waiting for us in heaven with our new home, then 
we can't think of "spiritual" or "heavenly" in immaterial terms.  Yes, 
different.  But what about the body of Christ that could be touched and 
eat food?  That was different, but material, not immaterial.

Note in 1 Corinthians 15 a very significant statement that is repeated:

	  As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the 
	  earth (place of abode); and as is the man from heaven,
  so also are those who are in heaven (place of abode).
  And just as we have borne the likeness of the earthly man,
  so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven
  (1 Cor. 15:48-49).

Of course "the man from heaven" is Jesus Christ, the firstfruit of those 
who will come after Him and be just like Him.  He was recognizable, He 
could be touched, and He could eat.

This last factor, the eating, suggests that we will be able to eat in 
heaven.  We are told in Revelation 22:1-3 that "The Tree of Life" is 
replanted in the New Jerusalem.  The twelve crops of fruit, one for each 
month, suggests that it is there to be eaten.

This takes us back to Genesis 2:9 where God had planted The Tree of Life 
along with The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil in the middle of 
the garden.  In the New Jerusalem, the second tree is gone!  Now the 
glory that God originally intended for the human race in Genesis can 
live for eternity in bodies like their Savior, "the likeness of the man 
from heaven."

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