1 Thessalonians 1:10, “And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.”
The grandest fact of the past is that Jesus Christ, the Lord of Glory, made in the likeness of men and became obedient unto death in order that all men might be born again. Jesus is now seated at the Father’s right hand making intercession for us. The hope for a fallen world is that Jesus promised to come again and receive His church unto Himself.
If the number of times a doctrine is mentioned shows the importance of it, then we understand that this is very important. John 14 gives us a glimpse of this doctrine. Acts 1:11 also reveals the plan of God. Our hope is not in the Rapture of the church, but the Lord Jesus Christ. I Thessalonians speaks of the Rapture of the people of God. II Thessalonians speaks of the revelation of Jesus Christ. First, He is coming for His saints. Then, He will come with His saints.
There are many things taking place in our world that men cannot explain. The Word of God is clear on how things will become. Paul spoke of perilous times. Men will become worse and worse as time goes on. People will not seek after the God of the Bible, but a god of their own imagination who is the antichrist. People’s hearts are prepared for the next great leader who will appear to a world without God.
The people are commended for waiting in our text. In chapter two, Paul admonishes the people as his glory at the Lord’s coming. In chapter three, Paul speaks of living right at the coming of our Lord. Chapter four gives us the detailed plan of the coming of our Lord.
First, we are told of the return of Jesus Christ. I Thessalonians 4:16 says, “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:” This is the sudden and unexpected coming to “catch away” the children of God who have been born again. There will be a shout, a voice and the trump of God, but they are only heard by those who are in Christ.
Next, Paul speaks of a resurrection of the dead. This is the first resurrection who are called blessed. Every saved person will be raised from the grave. The unsaved will be in the second resurrection of Revelation 20.
The final thought is the rapture or catching up. There is a uniting of body and spirit. This is one of the greatest passages of Scripture giving hope to the child of God. We will receive a new body. I look forward to the day when I will never disappoint my Lord again. I will never sin again. I will be with the One who sought me, bought me, cleansed me, and loves me more than anyone else forever.
Paul leaves the church with three great words of encouragement for the weary heart. First, he said to watch, for the day of the Lord cometh as a thief in the night. Second, he said to wake up. “Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober (alert).” Lastly, he tells us to work and live for Christ. The person who is looking for Jesus will guard his life very carefully. In chapter 5, verses 16-23, Paul gives the secret of a prepared heart for the coming of our Lord.
Friends, are you ready? Do you have a relationship with Jesus Christ? Are you ready to give an account to Him? Are you ready for the Bible to judge you? I pray that you are ready. Because ready or not, He is coming!