“For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit.”
being put to death in the flesh
The Romans put Jesus to death. Death was an experience that the Lord Jesus never knew from eternity. He constantly related to the other two members of the trinity until this point. At his death, he personally represented every member of the human race in his death. Even in his death, he brought good news.
“In the flesh” – the physical death of Christ on the cross. This defines that his death was physical death. Here Peter transports us to the foot of the cross. It was the humanity of Christ that died on the cross, not his deity.
but made alive by the Spirit
“Made alive” comes from two words: to make and alive. This does not mean that Jesus was energized with a dynamic personality. It means his human spirit returned to his body. He became alive in his human spirit and body (Mt. 27:46). At the resurrection, the Father restored Jesus to fellowship. Jesus’ resurrection conquered death by his human spirit returning to his body lying in the tomb. Christ received resurrection. Jesus was in the grave for three days then the Holy Spirit raised him from the dead.
Ac 2:24 “Whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.”
“Made alive” means to restore physical life. God restored Jesus’ physical life at the resurrection. Jesus restores our physical life for eternity when we come to him for salvation.
Ro 8:11 “But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.”
Note the contrast between “death in the flesh” and “alive by the Spirit.” We should not capitalize the word “Spirit” here. This refers to the human spirit of the Lord Jesus.
The resurrection of Christ is a major foundation fact upon which Christianity is built (1 Cor 15:17). Five different times Jesus declared that he would die and rise again (Mt. 12:39-40; 20:17-19; 26:30-32; Lk 18:31-32; Jn 2:19-22).
The resurrection is the foundation fact upon which Christianity stands.
The gospel consists in three parts: the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus.
1 Cor. 15:3 “For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ 1) died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4and that He 2) was buried, and that He 3) rose again the third day according to the Scriptures.”
Without the resurrection, there would be no gospel.
Ro 1:4 “And declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.”
Do you believe that 1) Jesus died for your sins (took your hell), 2) was buried to confirm his death, and 3) rose again to give you eternal life?