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Was Jesus’ physical body raised?

If the true Christian’s physical body is not raised, but instead he is given a spiritual body, then why was Jesus’ physical body raised? 

Jesus’ physical body was NOT raised. God took away his physical body. Jesus was raised as a spirit being. After his resurrection he was able to appear as if from nowhere and then vanish. Oftentimes he was not recognizable to his disciples as was the case when Jesus came up alongside two disciples on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-34). In fact, the disciples did not recognize him until he broke bread with them at the table. Then he disappeared from their sight (Verses 30-31). 

Jesus also miraculously appeared to ten of his disciples on the eve of his resurrection day. The door was locked when Jesus came and stood among them (John 20:19-23). One week later the disciples were in the same house with the doors locked. This time Thomas was with them. Again Jesus miraculously appeared and showed “doubting” Thomas the nail marks on his hands and told Thomas to put his hand into his side (Verses 24-28). 

Because Jesus was resurrected as a spirit being he was able to change the way he looked and appear and disappear at will. The Apostle Paul summarizes some of Jesus’ miraculous appearances in 1 Corinthians 15:5-7. 

Why does Philippians 3:21 say that Jesus will transform our lowly physical bodies?

Our lowly physical bodies cannot enter the kingdom of heaven.

 “I declare to you, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.” 1 Corinthians 15:50

“But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.” Philippians 3:20-21 

Jesus was resurrected as a spiritual being and as such he ascended into heaven. (Flesh and blood cannot enter heaven.) 

Since Jesus’ ascension he now sits at the right hand of God (Hebrews 12:2; Matthew 26:64) where all power and authority has been given him (Matthew 28:18). 

“In putting everything under him, God left nothing that is not subject to him.” Hebrews 2:8 

Therefore, as each true Christian dies, he is raised an immortal spiritual being by the power of Jesus in order to be part of the elect Body of Christ in heaven. 

“Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.” (1 Corinthians 15: 51-53) 

Why will Jesus transform our lowly physical bodies? Jesus will transform our lowly physical bodies when we die so that we may have imperishable immortal bodies in order to enter heaven. God has given Jesus the power to change us. 

To learn more about what happens to the dead listen to our series, “Where Does Your Soul Go When You Die?”