Much of my thinking in this area has been shaped by Richard Rohr and a remark in one of his devotionals really struck home. His history teacher sent Rohr and his classmates out into the world with this remark, “Just remember, on the practical level, the Christian Church was much more influenced by Plato than it was by Jesus.”¹ As a recovering neo-Platonist I have been interested in this kind of thing for a long time.
There are some extraordinary implications to be drawn from Christ’s bodily resurrection and they begin with question, “Why a bodily resurrection?” It isn’t out of the question that there could have been a spiritual resurrection but Christ came back with a body; a body that could be touched and that could eat. Jesus coming back in a corporeal sense adds weight to the value of the creation itself. If we have forgotten that God called everything, EVERYTHING, created good or very good then Jesus’ return should help us remember.
¹For the full devotional, which I highly recommend, click here https://cac.org/body-and-soul-2018-04-08/ . You can also sign up to get his devotionals regularly if you wish.