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How legitimate is the apostle Pauls argument?

1 Corinthians 15:14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.

20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. 23 But each in turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him. 

 

Basically if Christ just died and didn't rise again, Christians are screwed. However if he did rise again, all others have something to think about.

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1 point

1 Corinthians 15:14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile;

So this is basically a literary device. I'm not sure what a better translation would be from the original, I suspect more straight forward. But it is as said above, if Jesus was raised from the dead Christianity is legit, if not it's not legit. The purpose of the phrasing is to lull the reader so that they are only partially aware during the next section and thus more susceptible to believing without question.

17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.

The premise here is that if Jesus was not raised from the dead, you, me, everyone is evil. You can live your life for charity, never commit a sin ever, yet by virtue of you being alive you are a "sinner"--which is bullshit. None of us have a choice in being born, and none have control over whether Jesus was raised or not raised or was crucified or ever even existed. It's nothing to do with us alive now. Yet the writer wants you to believe that you are bad if this person was not raised from the dead. We don't want to be damned, so "you better believe this fantastic story!"

The hope is that you will accept being judged by something out of your control, that is the entire point. Its a setup to get you to that point mentally. Whether Christ was raised or not is now the determining factor, instead of being judged by your actions, and the phrasing prior to this part lets that odd and counter-intuitive thought slip into a part of your conscious.

20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep.

This is just telling you, it's okay, since this thing you now want to believe is definitely true, because I say it's true, you can get that warm fuzzy feeling in your tummy the religious crave like crack.

21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

There is nothing inherent about any single statement here, but it is strung together as if 1+1=2 therefore 2-1=1. If resurrection were possible, it would not necessarily have to "come through man," Adam dying is a Red Herring, and in turn "so in Christ all will be made alive" is a deductive fallacy or false conclusion.

23 But each in turn: Christ, the first fruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him.

This could be interpreted as just the conclusion, but as you see there is more to the preceding sections than just this. I believe the real point of the reiteration and putting an order to the madness -- Jesus first, then the first fruits, then the believers -- it distracts readers from any critical thinking about the preceding sentence, which is essential because as we see the preceding sentence is seriously flawed in terms of logic, even for one who truly believes the story of Jesus.

Basically if Christ just died and didn't rise again, Christians are screwed. However if he did rise again, all others have something to think about.

This is the conclusion ideally the masses would come to, since most do not want to wade through the complexity of the actual wording. The prior wording, and indoctrination, is what makes such a far-fetched myth palatable to so many however. There is quite a bit more to it than that simple conclusion.

More nefarious in my opinion.

Side: No
trumpet_guy(502) Clarified
1 point

I should have clarified what I meant. I meant is it coherent within itself. The verses weren't a religious "ra-ra" session to rile up the believers. It was the opposite, Paul was writing to the Corinthians because they had gotten more "religious" than Christ-like and had forgotten why they were Christians in the first place. The verses are Chrisitnaity in a nutshell. It doesn't matter if you think its unfair or not, how good of a person you think you really are, or how much bullshit, as you called it, you think it is. It rests the Christian faith and all its ideals on Christ's resurrection because that's what it was meant to do.

Side: Yes
iamdavidh(4856) Disputed
1 point

Well yeah, it's not a "ra-ra" for Christians, its a manipulation of Christians, which is what I'm pointing out.

He gives no directions there as to how a Christian should or should not act, nothing at all pertaining to any differences there may or may not be between being "religious" vs. "Christ-like" as you put it, just a perpetuation of current beliefs and a reminder that if they do not continue to believe hell or whatever awaits.

If you were "christ-like" or "zen" or something I suppose you might interpret that passage as meaning that Christians should quit caring what non-christians believe because, really in the end how you act is more important. But that would be ignoring contradictions in the passage itself and would be quite a stretch. Plus it would not be Christianity, so had it ever said that it would have been changed upon translation.

but I'd rather talk about the bullshit remark really, because that's by far the most important part, and what follows in your reply.

Do you deny that if a hell and a heaven existed, and that if there were an all powerful being, that should that all powerful being judge us mere pathetic mortals based on whether we believe this or that story which we have no proof of, over say, how you treat your neighbor, that it would not be bullshit?

What if you had a co-worker who was lazy, stole from the company, didn't flush the toilet after use, and treated other customers and co-workers like crap. And you have been working for the company for as decade, perfect attendance, never late, almost always give 100%, nice to everyone, and are frankly better at the job. But it's time for a promotion and the lazy, rude, mean bastard gets promoted and the boss says it's because he believes in Big Foot and you don't and the boss happens to be one of those Big Foot enthusiasts?

That is the exact god described by Christians.

You'd not worship that boss. You'd say "this is bullshit."

Side: Yes