1 Corinthians 15:15 MEANING

1 Corinthians 15:15
(15) Yea, and we are found false witnesses.--Not mistaken witnesses, but witnesses testifying to what they know to be false. This is another result involved in a denial of the doctrine of the resurrection, that the Apostles must be regarded as false witnesses--not deceived, but deceivers. The suppressed part of the argument here is the absurdity of the Apostles being such. There was no motive for them to speak untruth.

If so be that the dead rise not.--Better, if the dead be not raised.

Verse 15. - We are found. The word means, "we are proved to be," convicted of being false witnesses. False witnesses of God; i.e. concerning God. St. Paul does not shrink from the issue. It is not one - it could not be one - between truth and mistake, but between truth and falsehood. We have testified of God that he raised up Christ; rather, the Christ. "This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses" (Acts 2:32; Acts 4:33; Acts 13:30).

15:12-19 Having shown that Christ was risen, the apostle answers those who said there would be no resurrection. There had been no justification, or salvation, if Christ had not risen. And must not faith in Christ be vain, and of no use, if he is still among the dead? The proof of the resurrection of the body is the resurrection of our Lord. Even those who died in the faith, had perished in their sins, if Christ had not risen. All who believe in Christ, have hope in him, as a Redeemer; hope for redemption and salvation by him; but if there is no resurrection, or future recompence, their hope in him can only be as to this life. And they must be in a worse condition than the rest of mankind, especially at the time, and under the circumstances, in which the apostles wrote; for then Christians were hated and persecuted by all men. But it is not so; they, of all men, enjoy solid comforts amidst all their difficulties and trials, even in the times of the sharpest persecution.Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God,.... The apostles were chosen to be witnesses of the resurrection of Christ; he appeared to them, and was seen by them for this purpose; and they were sent into all the world, to bear their testimony to this truth, which they accordingly did: now if Christ is not risen, they have bore a false testimony; and what greater scandal, or a more odious character can be fixed upon a man, than to be a false witness? but God forbid that such an imputation should be fastened upon the holy apostles of Christ, who cannot be thought to have any sinister end in publishing such a falsehood; who were sure on account of declaring it, and abiding by it, to meet with nothing but hatred, reproach, persecution, poverty, and death; but this is not all, nor the worst; for if they are false witnesses, they are false witnesses of God; they are of his suborning; he selected them as witnesses; he must put this lie into their mouths, and send them into the world under his authority to publish it; than which to say nothing can be thought of more blasphemous and execrable; and yet this must follow, upon a denial of the resurrection of Christ:

because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ, whom he raised not up, if so be the dead rise not; it may be read, "we have testified against God", as the Vulgate Latin does; for as it must be bringing a false testimony from God, so it must be bearing a false testimony against him, to say that he raised Christ from the dead, when he is not risen; which must be the case, if there is no resurrection of the dead.

Courtesy of Open Bible