This is a study of the use of the word ‘body’, as used in the N.T., in the O.T., in common language and language of law to mean a collection of doctrine, teachings or beliefs.
These beliefs become assymilated in the soul and life experience, and become part of the substance and ‘body’ of the WHOLE person. The “body” of a persons beliefs and doctrines answers the questions; “What are you made of?, what do you stand for,? what are your beliefs, principles and convictions?
Since the beliefs, law, truths and way of Christ were ‘ingested’ and eaten by believers in Jesus as God in the first century, they became a plural, corporal continuation of the doctrine, “person” and thus “body” of God/Christ. In the first century setting, the plural “body” of individuals in Christ needed publicly judged as righteous, true and favored in contrast with the natural, Adamic man under the edenic or mosaic law.
In John 6, Jesus teaches that to ingest the spirit and life of his words (vs 63) is to eat his flesh (body) and drink his blood. I believe that the blood represents the life-will even unto death.
John 6:53-63/KJV v 53. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. 54. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. v 55. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. v 56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. v 57 As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. v 58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: (John 6:28,29); not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever. v 59 These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum. v 60 Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? v 61 When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you? v 62 What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? v 63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.
Then in Matt 26 During the symbolic breaking of bread, He reinforces the point that the bread (words & truths) is his body and the wine his blood.
*Mat 26:26-29/KJV* v 26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. v 27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; v 28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. v 29 But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.
Vs 29 can be shown to refer to and be fulfilled in Luk 24:30-31; v 30, And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them. v 31 And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight.
Here it doesn’t say that Jesus actually ate the broken bread, (symbolizing his own body of doctrine) but departed that they (the apostles) might eat and ’embody’ his resurrected and verified words and truths. Jesus had taught them that the kingdom of God was (would be) within them, and (HE) was now supporting and inaugragating the kingdom indwelling by breaking the bread while physically departing from their presence. In the same timeframe, in John 20:22, Jesus had breathed on them saying recieve the (indwelling) holy Spirit. I believe the two actions by Jesus had the same, overlapping meaning, thus equating the GOOD, loving, living, indwelling truths and doctrines of God and Jesus as the holy Spirit. Jesus was eating and drinking the bread & wine with them in the fathers kingdom as the holy Spirit within them.
In the letter of first corinthians, Paul expands upon this teaching of Christ as bread, meat and “body”. Paul emphasizes that they are (should be) one body, belief and doctrine, but are many members, tools and expressions outflowing from the one good doctrine and set of beliefs. Notice that as far back as chapter 6, Paul mentions physical meats and the physical individual body in a perishing way, as he begins to allude to Jesus teaching in John 6. Paul then reminds the readers that the GOOD body and life of Christ indwelling is not to be compromised and adultered (fornication)) and can’t be purchased. (harlotry)
*[[Joh 6:27]] KJV* Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed.
*1Co 6:13/KJV* Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.
*1Co 6:19/KJV* What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
*1Co 10:16/KJV* The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion (common union) of the body (doctrine, way & ttuths) of Christ?
*1Co 10:17/KJV* For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread. (one way)
*1Co 11:24/KJV* And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
*1Co 12:12/KJV* For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.
*1Co 12:13/KJV* For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. (Intent)
*1Co 12:14/KJV* For the body is not one member, but many.
*1Co 12:18/KJV* But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.
*1Co 12:20/KJV* But now are they many members, yet but one body.
*1Co 12:25/KJV* That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.
*1Co 12:27/KJV* Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.
*1Co 15:35/KJV* But some man will say, How are the dead raised up? and with what body do they come?
*1Co 15:37/KJV* And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain:
*1Co 15:38/KJV* But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him, and to every seed his own body.
*1Co 15:44/KJV* It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.
Then in a section of Isaiah which can be easily associated with the timeframe of the growth of the nation of Christ and thus 30-70 AD events, we have the prophecy that the believers would rise along with Christ while those of the disbelieving body of Moses would not.
*[[Isa 26:12-14/KJV]]* v 12 LORD, thou wilt ordain peace for us: for thou also hast wrought all our works in us. v 13 O LORD our God, other lords beside thee have had dominion over us: but by thee [Jesus] only will we make mention of thy name. v 14 They are dead, they shall not live; they are deceased, they shall not rise: therefore hast thou visited and destroyed them, and made all their memory to perish. *Isa 26:19/KJV* Thy (God/Jesus’) dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.
Though, there had been a private vindicative, approving and ressuccitating appearance after his resurrection, (Hosea 6:2) there would be a public return in the clouds, and the public resurrectiom & victorious change of the individuals of Jesus corporal body of Peace in 66-70 .
Paul has quoted Is 28:12 in 1 cor 14:21, confirming that these Isaiah passages have been in his mind as he writes the letter and support that they have first century application weather 30 AD or 70 AD or both.,
And in a passage of Is 59, with a timed fulfillment in @ 40-68 AD we see that the persecuted adherants to Christ doctrine, truths and way were considered as dead and awaiting deliverence.
*Isa 59:10 KJV* We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noonday as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men.
I cor 15:35-41 as a continuation and extension of 12:4-14,20 & 27-31 explains that the resurrected individuals of the corporal body of Christ would retain their individuality at the time of the resurrection and victorious change.
Thus summarizing, Jesus and then Pauls use the word “body”, while acknowledging and noting the retainment of individual aspects, refers to the people who ingest and embidy his doctrine& truths and recieve his grace. The “resurrection of the body” refers to the resurrection and changing of this people group in contrast with the edenic or mosaic ‘body’ of law. This would occur coincidentally with, but not preceed those ‘firstfruits’ who had fallen asleep (died through natural or inflicted death) in Christ between 30-66 AD. We affirm a resurrection or continuation of the spirit and angel (body) of each one after death, which aspect Paul affirms in Acts 23:6-8 and talks of in 1 Thess 4:16,17, and 1 cor 15:33 &51,52.
After talking of a unified, yet individual body of Christs doctrine and truths, why would Paul change it in chapt 15 to refer to a future eternal reconstitution of the physical bones and body during an alleged restored edenic state?
To further confirm this view and meaning of the word “body”, we look to Jude’s use of it in his epistle.
Jude 1:9 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.
What is meant by the “body of Moses”? Did the angel fight with Satan about moses’ physical bones? Consider these cross references to help your contemplation.
1. Dan 10:13; But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.
2. Dan 12:1; And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
3. Zec 3:2 And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?
4. 2Pe 2:11 Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord.
5. Rev 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought with Michael.
2Co 3:7-13; 7. But if the ministration of death, [body & law of Moses] written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which glory was to be done away: 8. How shall not the ministration of the spirit be rather glorious? 9. For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory. 10. For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excelleth. 11. For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious. 12. Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech: 13. And not as Moses, which put a vail over his face, that the children of Israel could not stedfastly look to the end of that which is abolished:
John Gills commentary of Jude 1:9 recognizes that some understand this to mean the physical body of moses but then states his contrasting personal understanding;
but it is best of all to understand it of the law of Moses, which is sometimes called Moses himself, Joh 5:45; and so the body of Moses, or the body of his laws, the system of them; just as we call a system of laws, and of divinity, such an one’s body of laws, and such an one’s body of divinity: and this agrees with the language of the Jews, who say, of statutes, service, purification, that they are גופי התורה, “the bodies of the law” and so of Misnic treatises, as those which concern the offerings of turtle doves, and the purification of menstruous women, that they are גופי, “the bodies” of the traditions s, that is, the sum and substance of them: so the decalogue is said to be “the body of the Shema”, or “Hear, O Israel”, De 6:4, so Clemens of Alexandria says, that there are some who consider the body of the Scriptures, the words and names, as if they were, το σωμα του μωσεως, “the body of Moses”
Thus, the Angel Michael was not wrestling with the devil about Moses physical bones body, but I believe about the righteousness of the law and thus (like the garden law) the devils inability to accuse, torture and condemn humanity or the jews based on either garden or mosaic law , due to the new law, new creation, new words and new GOOD way of God and life being enacted by God in Christ. Paul touches on these things in 2 Cor 3 above and Eph 6 below.
*[[Eph 6:12/KJV]]* For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
Furthermore, consider these among the several definitions of the word “body” in Websters dictionary.
2. Matter, as opposed to spirit.
3. A person; a human being; sometimes alone; more generally, with some or no; as, somebody; nobody.
5. A collective mass; a number of individuals or particulars united; as the body of mankind. Christians united or the Church is called the body, of which each Christian is a member, and Christ the head.
7. A corporation; a number of men, united by a common tie, by one form of government, or by occupation; as the legislative body; the body of the clergy; body corporate; body politic.
10. A pandect; a general collection; a code; a system; as a body of laws; a body of divinity.
The letter of Romans is yet another place to see the corporal and covanental use of the word ‘body’. In chapters 4-8 & 12, Paul often refers to the body in a corporate doctrinal or covanental sense such as *[[Rom 6:6/KJV]* Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin [covenant of death made with Adam] might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. [the body of the edenic law or its enmities or effects.]
Most uses of the word body in this section refer to the corporal or covanental sense. Here is another example from Romans
*[[Rom 7:4/KJV]]* Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; [by the authority of his new words and the new law of faith, John 6:28,29; not his death] that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, [verified from heaven] that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
Ephesians and Colossians also contain several corporal or covanental uses of the word body.
Thus the “body” of Moses was the temporary inferior law and way of Moses.
The “body”of Adamic humanity under just the edenic law of “sin and “death” (without faith towards the edenic promise of Gen 3:15) would have been referred to as the body of flesh, sin, works, inadequacy (striving), fear, & insecurity and “death”. The body of Moses was a ‘corporal’, public body of conditional law, flesh, insecurities, fear, etc. BOTH would have been and are in contrast with the “body”, spirit and life of Christ continuing through indwelling.
In John 3, Jesus affirmed to the Pharisees; Marvel not that ye must be born again ( born a new way of freedom through the spirit; intent and will, of God/Jesus law). That which is flesh (striving in and against edenic or Moses law) is flesh; that which is spirit (rest, freedom and life of faith in the Good way of Jesus as God) is “spirit” (of the GOOD supernatural intent, will and life of God).
From the ISBE definition of “BODY”:
#4. The Body and Sin: From all this it is apparent that the body in itself is not necessarily evil, a doctrine which is taught in Greek philosophy, (and indirectly in Ireneousian, fundamentalist, and most ‘christian’ theology; my addition), but nowhere in the Old Testament and New Testament. The rigid and harsh dualism met with in Plato is absent from Paul’s writings, and is utterly foreign to the whole of Scripture. Here we are distinctly taught, on the one hand, that the body is subordinated to the soul, but on the other, with equal clearness, that the human body has a dignity, originally conferred upon it by the Creator, who shaped it out of earth, and glorified it by the incarnation of Christ, the sinless One, though born of a woman.
The so called “christian” doctrine that continued procreational physical lifecycles and death is evidence that the body and life is still under ‘sin’ and thus subject to and expecting a yet future eternal physical resurrection to a alledged restored eternal edenic state is thus shown to be a false and erroneous doctrine in need of confession and cleansing. (I John 1:7-9) It is similar to the doctrine of Plato and the greek philosophers. In christiandom, it stems mostly from Ireaneous and other writers, not from Creator Jesus or his apostles.
The “body” and substance (beliefs and ways of the spirit & soul) of individuals of humanity were in temporary ignorance, insecurity and fear (death) under the realm and effect of Adamic (garden) and mosaic law. The victorious fulfilling of the coming of the seed promised to humanity through the woman AND his law (John 6:28,29, Rom 3:27-31; I John 3:21-24) ) of adoption, security, divinity and experiential empowerment of the life; cancels and destroys that fear, insecurity, “death” and enmity, and enables the willing seeker to be successful in glorifying God in ones life. (rom 3:23,24) Thats why the authority of the law of faith (John 6:28,29) is stressed in context with the ‘sin’ of coming short of the glory of God in Rom 3:23-31. It is the begining axiom to remedy the previous inability to glorify God.
Thus, the first century public resurrection of the “dead” in Adam (and Moses) was partly the public approval of the adhearants of Christ, and public disapproval of the ways of moses or pagan babylon.
The “body” of truths and the authority of those truths as freeing and establishing law through faith, was resurrected (1 Cor 15:21) from having been judged as wrong, dead and ‘sin’ by the religious authorities (from both judaism and paganism) of its day.
The truths and “body” of Christ resurrected could need a similar resurrection from the religious “body” of the interpretations of Ireneous and from the oppression of insubordinate, disbekieving, dishinouring corporate “bodies” calling itself govornment.
For lately we have lived in a jungle.
Steve Miller Band; Jungle Love