printer friendly version



Can Flesh & Blood Inherit God's Kingdom?



Jehovah's Witnesses


Witnessing Tips





Other Groups


Contact Us


John: Hi, Chris. I told you last week that I had several bible verses that prove conclusively that Jesus did not rise bodily from the grave. Would you be willing to take a few minutes to see them?

Chris: Sure.

John: In 1 Corinthians 15:50, it says, “However, this I say, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit God’s kingdom....” See, Chris, how could Jesus’ body have been resurrected when the bible says that flesh and blood cannot exist in heaven?

Chris: That’s a great question, John. I certainly do believe that an ordinary mortal body cannot exist in heaven, but an immortal body can. Look at verse 53, “For this which is corruptible must put on incorruption, and this which is mortal must put on immortality”. See, the text is saying that incorruption and immortality is added, or “put on”, to our physical bodies. Nothing is being taken away, or subtracted, from our humanity; immortality is being added to it.  This is the point of what Paul is trying to convey.

John: I think you are obviously missing the point! Again, “flesh and blood cannot inherit God’s kingdom”. That’s about as clear as it gets.

Chris: John, I believe that one of the best ways to interpret Scripture is to compare it to other portions of Scripture. Would you agree?

John: Yes, that’s important. That’s why we read the whole bible, Chris, and not just a part of it.

Chris: Turn to Matthew chapter 16. Remember when Jesus asked His apostles who they thought He was, and Peter said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”?

John: Sure.

Chris: Look what Jesus said to Peter in verse 17. “Happy you are, Simon son of Jonah, because flesh and blood did not reveal [it] to you, but my Father who is in the heavens did.” Do you think Jesus meant the literal substance, flesh and blood, or do you think He used this phrase to refer to natural man?

John: Natural man, of course.

Chris: Right. Now look at Galatians 1:16. Paul said that when he was called to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, he “....did not go at once in conference with flesh and blood”. Also, in Ephesians 6:12, Paul wrote, “....because we have a wrestling, not against flesh and blood....” John, in these two verses, do you think flesh and blood refers to the actual body material, or to natural man?

John: I guess natural man.

Chris: Since this same idiom, used throughout the New Testament by both Jesus and Paul, means an ordinary, natural man, and not literally  flesh and blood, don’t you think that this is the best way to interpret it in 1 Corinthians 15:50?

John: I don’t know, Chris? I’m telling you that the bible proves that physical bodies can’t survive in heaven. Look at 1 Corinthians 15:44, “It is sown a physical body, it is raised up a spiritual body. If there is a physical body, there is also a spiritual one”. Now, that’s clear! Material bodies can’t get into heaven, they have to be raised as an invisible spirit, just like Jesus was.

Chris: I disagree, John. Paul’s usage of the term “spiritual body” really means a supernatural, physical body dominated by the power of the Holy Spirit. Look back to 1 Corinthians 10.

John: Here we go again!

Chris: In this chapter, Paul is referring to the Jewish forefathers who wandered in the wilderness for 40 years. Do you remember what they ate and drank, John?

John: Manna and water.

Chris: Right. Now read verses 3-4, “and all ate the same spiritual food and all drank the same spiritual drink”. John, does spiritual food and spiritual drink refer to immaterial, invisible food and drink, or a supernatural provision that came from heaven?

John: Well, it was real food that Jehovah God provided.

Chris: Okay. And in 1 Corinthians 2:15, Paul says, “However, the spiritual man examines indeed all things, but he himself is not examined by any man”. John, does “spiritual man” here refer to an invisible spirit person or to a physical man who is empowered by God’s Holy Spirit?

John: I see your point. Although I’m not finished yet, Chris. I still have some more verses from the Gospels that will show, without a doubt, that Jesus’ body never rose on the third day.

Chris: Then let’s make some time next week, John.

John: Sounds good.

top of page

Go to part 4

Back to part 2

printer friendly version