1 Corinthians 15:36-40
You fool, that which you sow is not quickened, except it die:…
The text may be applied to —
I. THE FACTS OF NATURE as here.
II. THE EVENTS OF HISTORY.
1. In general. Note the fate of empires. They are born, grow, decay, die or are killed, and out of their ruins, phoenix like, the new emerge: evolution succeeds revolution. So with the dynasties who rule these empires.
2. In particular rulers and statesmen die to give birth to their successors. Moses dies, but Joshua rises. John must decrease that Christ must increase. Saul holds the mantle of martyred Stephen and then wears it.
III. THE PHENOMENA OF PROVIDENCE. "The old order changeth, giving birth to new," etc. "Our little systems have their day," etc. Each age has its own mission, and having accomplished it, it dies only, however, to hand on the results of its mission which are embodied in the work of the next.
IV. THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE CHURCH. This is marked by a series of burials and resurrections, beginning with the burial and resurrection of its great Head. "The blood of the martyrs was the seed of the Church." What was more completely dead than Christendom before the reformers awoke it into life! What was deader than religion in England before the great evangelists of the last century aroused it into activity! What are revivals but resurrections of dead churches?
V. THE PROGRESS OF THE SOUL. True manhood is ever mounting on its dead self to nobler things. This is true —
1. Mentally. What intellectual revolutions a thoughtful man passes through! How dead are the dreams of childhood, the ideals of youth, the purposes of later years! How opinions, principles, beliefs change, and how necessary for the mind's growth that they should!
2. Spiritually. From the moment when a man passes from death to life to the moment the mortal puts on immortality moral growth consists of a perpetual dying to sin that righteousness may live.
(J. W. Burn.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die: