About the Author

Thomas Ray Floyd was born in 1953 in Simpson County, Mississippi, the son of Roy Thomas Floyd and Lina Sue Shows Floyd. Thomas Ray's mother was a member of a Primitive Baptist church, and he cut his teeth on the doctrines of distinguishing grace.

When he was a small boy, his father was converted to Christ and became a member of a Missionary Baptist Church. Thomas Ray joined the church of his father when he was 13 years old, and thought of himself as a Christian. The doctrines of grace that he had heard as a child continued to be precious to him and when he became an adult, he joined a Primitive Baptist Church. When he was 27, Thomas Ray made his first effort to preach the gospel in public and was ordained to the full functions of the ministry in 1985. In 1986 he was convinced under the preaching of Rolfe Barnard (by tapes from Mt. Olive Tape Library), the written sermons of Spurgeon, and the ministry of Elder Zack Guess that he had been a false professor and cried out in agony of soul to the Lord Jesus Christ to have mercy and truly save him. And He did! Floyd then began to preach the gospel as he had been taught of the Lord.

Floyd has pastored churches in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee and until recently was pastor of a church plant known as "Particular Baptist Fellowship." He and his wife Brenda presently attend Zion Baptist Church at Polkville, Mississippi, pastored by Elder Glen Hopkins. The pulpit ministry of Zion Baptist Church can be heard at Sermonaudio.com.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

The Resurrection of the Body

(Article for publication week of 9-3- AD 2015)

"For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body, according to the working whereby He is able even to subdue all things unto Himself " (Philippians 3:20-21).
The resurrection of the body is a cardinal doctrine of the Christian Faith, and very much unique to our religion. Many heathens have, and have had some vague notions of "life after death", but generally are and have been ignorant of the resurrection of the body. Believers in Christ have the promise of, not only the immortality of the soul, but also of the resurrection of the body.
First of all, I will make it clear that the human body is precious to the Lord, and especially the bodies of His children. There is nothing intrinsically evil about the human body as certain heathens and pseudo-Christian groups have erroneously taught. When our text speaks of our bodies as being vile, it refers to the frailties to which we are susceptible due to the Fall of Man and of our sin nature, and the difficulties of this present life. Our bodies are subject to disease and distempers, and finally to death, but there is nothing sinful about the human body per se. God made man in His Image, and although He Himself hath not "body parts, or passions," being pure Spirit (John 4:24), yet He formed man in His Image,  body and soul. Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Second Person of the holy Trinity, Who is co-equal and co-eternal with the Father, became a Man, with a real human body and soul,  that He might work out a perfect righteousness for His elect people. "The Word was made flesh" (John 1:14). The Eternal Word of God became a Real Man. He lived as a man; He was crucified as a Man; He was laid in the grave as a Man; He arose from the grave as Man; He ascended back to heaven as a Man; He sits now at the right hand of God as a Man (I Timothy 2:5); He will return in glory to judge the world as a Man. Yet, He is infinitely more than a man, for He is the God-Man. Since our Lord took upon Him a real human body we know that the human body is not evil per se, for our Lord was "holy, harmless, undefiled, [and] separate from sinners" (Hebrews 7:26). Christ died to redeem us completely, including our bodies (Romans 8:23), and His redemptive work will not be complete until we are raised in His likeness (Psalm 17:15). The God of peace is active in the children of God sanctifying us wholly, in body, soul, and spirit (I Thessalonians 5:23). And so we conclude from our creation in the Image of God, the Blessed Humanity of Christ, the redemptive work of Christ, the work of sanctification in us, and God's promise to raise our bodies, that there is nothing evil about the human body in and of itself.
However, the human body is subject to many trials, spiritually and physically. We are subject to physical pain, disease, infirmities and finally to physical death itself. Also, we are subject to many temptations and spiritual weaknesses. Every man is acquainted with physical infirmities, and believers are subject to these and many spiritual trials besides. Though our struggle with sin is primarily spiritual, yet they affect our bodies as well, for the body and soul are so connected that one greatly affects the other. In the Day of the resurrection we shall be set free from all these infirmities because Christ will give us new bodies fashioned after His Own glorified Body.
What shall we say concerning this new body? Why, we hardly know what to say, for it is higher than our human reasoning! But we do know this, we shall be like Him! Not that we shall ever become gods, but we shall be conformed to His Image (Romans 8:29). Christians shall be raised immortal and incorruptible to live with Christ, and worship Him perfectly forever and ever. Amen. (More on our subject next week, God willing.)

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