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VIII. The Idea of Jesus' Resurrection as the Beginning of the Eschatological Resurrection

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Chapter Summary

The idea that Jesus' resurrection formed the beginning of the eschatological resurrection does not appear elsewhere in Paul's letters. Paul's view that Jesus is the first-born, in the sense that he occupies the leading position in the hierarchy of the new age, has been adopted and worked out in Col. 1: 15. The designation of Jesus as the first-born from the dead is just another way of stating that Jesus is Lord over all, dead and living. He is the one through whom God saves the earth. In brief, Matthew's claim that when Jesus died many bodies of saints were raised and appeared after Jesus' resurrection is unrelated to Paul's idea that Jesus' resurrection formed the beginning of the eschatological resurrection. It is most likely that the idea that Jesus' resurrection was the beginning of the eschatological resurrection, as it is conveyed in 1 Cor. 15:20, is Paul's own invention.

Keywords: eschatological resurrection; Jesus' resurrection; Matthew; Paul

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