“In Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ.” (1 Corinthians 15:22-23)
Jesus rose from the dead and returned to heaven. Believers who die, go to heaven too. But their bodies don’t. These dead bodies just seem to decay and ‘return to dust’.
However, at the end of time all believers will receive their bodies back — renewed, glorified and immortal. For just as Jesus Christ was made alive with His body, so those who belong to Him will be raised to life when He returns to earth for the final judgment. Then they will live with Him on His new earth — not as spirits, but as people with a body that is no longer subjected to disabilities, illnesses or death.
Jesus is called “the firstfruits”. He was the first to be raised immortal, never to die again. And He made it possible for all of us to receive this eternal life too, if we are “in Him”. For the resurrection life is inseparably connected to Jesus Christ. We can’t receive it apart from a relationship with Him. In John 14:6, He even says He is the Life. It is the connection to Him that makes people immortal and that makes life worth living.
Is the bodily resurrection important to you, or do you think it would be equally good to spend eternity in heaven without having our bodies resurrected?