VERSE OF THE DAY
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 (New Living Translation)
For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.
For our Lord God will ascend with a rising of a loud voice with a voice of the archangel with the trumpet of God he will come the believers in faith who died will be brought back from beyond the grave together with all who are still alive and remain on earth will be caught up in the clouds in air to meet the lord God then we all shall remain with the lord forever and always he will then give us eternal life with him
I don’t know if you heard but currently in the news a young boy has proved that he was the past life reincarnation of Marty Martyn and it has stemmed a large study about the after life and the rising of the dead and the Bible has already had many occurrences of prophecy already happening I highly believe for some time now we have been in the end time happenings I believe that the coronavirus is a big part of it as there was to be a large plague to come in the return of Jesus second coming and the return of God himself many new species of creatures and creation have been found and locusts are in the numerous numbers many than ever before large fires have happened these are just all in the past several years but many more facts have been documented dating back decades in history as well we are not far from God himself returning but I am not in anyway God and I do not claim to know his plans for it states in the Bible that No one not even the angels or scholars know of his ascending day but these things make the thoughts present and the mind wonder we are told to be aware and ready for it could happen anytime I myself am open to welcome him back in open arms for him to take me home to be with him I am ready my hope is that through my readings you may learn things you may have never known and will be given new information to help you travel your life journey in an image of Christ even more than before so that you can deeper and more intently walk with your faith walk more
TWO WAYS TO RISE (1 THESS 4:16-18)
October 23, 2019
This series in 1 and 2 Thessalonians has been titled “With the end in mind” and as we’ve been studying, virtually every other verse in this letter is about the eschaton (the end times). But before you balk at the mention of “end times”, let’s take a look at what exactly Paul says to the Thessalonian church and why he says these things.
(A) FIRST, DEAD BELIEVERS WILL RISE IN RESURRECTION POWER. (1 THESS 4:16)
Paul feels that this issue of the end times is an important topic to address in his letter (1 Thess 4:13-15). This is of importance because their entire life, and everything they do in life is headed in that direction. Everything in life and death is defined relative to this moment. This is the second most important event of all time. The first was when Jesus was crucified.
In a sense, everything that gives their present life meaning or no meaning will be determined by that final “eschaton” moment. That moment will show if their (and our) lives has been a waste of time. This end of all things is a weight that we want to drop on our hearts that displaces everything else and makes everything else in life seem small and insignificant relative to it.
Paul proceeds to describe what the “coming of the Lord” will look and sound like (1 Thess 4:15-16a). “The Lord himself will descend from heaven” (1 Thess 4:16a), and the use of the word “himself” eliminates the possibility of someone else or a mediator to come down. In the OT, the “angel of the Lord” is often sent to the OT figures. Here, Paul is eager to dispel a notion that a representative of the Lord will come. In 1 Thess 1:1, we’ve also been told that “the Lord” will be the man Jesus Christ.
He will come with a “cry of command” and the “voice of an archangel and with the sound of the trumpet of God” (1 Thess 4:16b). It seems to be majestic and loud. Somehow, the Lord Himself will also have to be visible to all, in the sky. When Jesus comes, it will be a day of disruption (c.f. Acts 1:9-11, Matt 24:27-31). All our attention will be turned heaven-ward as we see and hear Him. We will have no time to look and indulge in petty things. The trumpet will announce the arrival of the King, but it would also be a victory trumpet. They will hear the sound of authority and victory. The King is coming and we are told to get ready for His return.
At this important event, the dead in Christ will rise first (1 Thess 4:16b). Paul was eager to stress this especially in the preceding verses in 1 Thess 4:13-15. Death is that experience that no one has come back from. We know no one who has died and come back out, except Jesus Christ. The only one who has come back from the dead never to die again is Jesus Christ.
We do not like to think of our mortality. TVs barely show funerals unless it’s necessary. We don’t like to show sickness and death on our media. The world continues to hold up eternal youth and doesn’t like to consider the reality that awaits all of us.
Why does the dead rise? It is the dead that are in Christ that will rise (c.f. 1 Thess 3:13). They are joined to the Son of God who has conquered death. Because He lives, they too. Resurrection is a moment in the past that determines the future. The same power that raised Jesus from the dead is the power that raises those who are in Christ. And it isn’t just a spiritual experience. In 1 Cor 15:50-55, Paul writes about the certainty of a bodily resurrection. The promise of restoration to get the bodies that we always wanted. In that day, those who have never ran, will run to Jesus. Those who have never seen, will stare in the face of their Saviour. Those who are death on this side of heaven, will hear the words of Him who loves them. We sing about this, but someday, it will come true:
There is a hope that stands the test of time, that lives my eyes beyond the beckoning grave
To see the glory of a day divine, when I behold His face
When sufferings cease, and sorrows die, and every longing satisfied
Then joy unspeakable will flood my soul, for I am truly home
(C) SECOND, LIVING BELIEVERS WILL BE RAISED IN VINDICATED FAITH. (1 THESS 4:17)
Paul goes on to address “those who are alive” (1 Thess 4:17a) and three things will happen to them:
1. Caught up with them in the clouds (can also be translated as snatched
2. Meet the Lord in the air
3. Always be with the Lord
“Rapture theology” draws attention to this verse in the past 200 years. There’s also an idea of a secret rapture. The traditional understanding of this verse is that Jesus returns and is visible, and all Christians go to receive this reigning King. The main point here is not that we are raptured, but that we go out to meet and greet our Lord. What kind of people will do that? Many of us don’t feel the stake of our King’s victory. We want the salvation but we don’t really want to know what He has won for us. We think of heaven as a place with gold streets and think of the friends that we miss. But what about the King of Heaven? This verse calls us to be people who celebrate the victory of the King who bought salvation for them. When He comes, they will feel vindicated. There will be no more need for faith, because there is sight.
1 Thess 4:17 is a call for us to rejoice in the eschaton. We look forward to a day when our longings will be finally satisfied! “always be with the Lord” is a phrase that provides great comfort. Those who long for Him all their lives and have never seen Him, yet love Him, will finally be vindicated. The wait will be worth it.
Are we so satisfied with this life that Jesus is at best, more goodness? Our hearts ought to say that in Him is all goodness and apart from Him, we have nothing! It is this kind of believer and follower of Jesus that takes Ps 73:25-28 as the prayer of their hearts as they look forward to this moment. The eschaton is meant to stir us up for hope.
Read the command of 1 Thess 4:18. As the people look forward to that moment when Jesus returns as a reigning triumphant King, they are to keep encouraging one another with the words that point to what is to come. This also means that good eschatology is meant to be an encouragement! Therefore, Satan would be glad for us to have bad eschatology. Good eschatology is focused on the Lord Jesus, and the joy that comes when we see Him face to face. Bad eschatology is more focused on the details and the timetable but has nothing to do for our struggles, hurt, sins etc.
There are 4 main views of the end times, as summarised in this table:
Whatever your view of the end times, let’s use Matt 24 to help us identify two principles that help us think practically about the end times.
Put these together and our stand on the end times doesn’t really matter. What matters is whether we believe Jesus will come again, and when He comes again, we need to give an account of our lives.
We can be sure of one thing that there comes a day when Jesus finally and actually returns. In that moment, everything will fade away and the only that is important is Him. Are you ready for that day? Are you looking forward to that day? Does it put everything else in its context?
Paul closes this section with a specific command — “therefore encourage one another with these words” (1 Thess 4:18). Knowing about the end times is not just for knowledge’s sake, but is for encouragement!
How then, can we encourage one another with these words? We can say to those who minister and pour out their lives to people that don’t respond, and to those who struggle with church leaders that disappoint that Jesus will come again. All our struggles will be put in their context and we will have joy. One day Jesus will be back, and when He comes back, He will make all things right. Do you have healthy eschatology? Are you anticipating His return?
What Does 1 Thessalonians 4:16 Mean? ►
For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
1 Thessalonians 4:16(NASB)
“In the midst of life we are in death,’ is a well-known saying that is very true of every member of the human race, for we are born dead in our sins and we are spiritually separated from God. Death in the Bible means separation.. and although we live in physical bodies on this terrestrial plane.. physical death is everyman’s eventual destiny, when our spirit and soul are separated from our material body. Physical death is the point where we are transferred forever into the spiritual sphere.. and the choices we made in life will be forever fixed and final.
Physical death is the inevitable end of all human-kind and the grave is the final resting place for the body. The spirit and souls of those who have died in the Lord go immediately to be with Him in heaven, whilst the soul of those who do not believe in Christ end up in hell – the place of the unsaved dead, where they will await the final judgement. But there is one generation of believers who will escape the icy fingers of physical death from claiming its prey.
There is one generation of Christians that will be alive at the the return of the Lord Jesus – for the Lord Himself will come from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise from their graves first -and THEN we who are still alive and remain on earth will be caught up together with them into the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and from that moment onwards we shall always be with the Lord Jesus. Our body will be changed into a new incorruptible body.. an eternal resurrected body, just like the Lord Jesus Himself. This is the blessed hope that all believes have – in Christ.
However difficult and problematic our life may be in this lost and fallen world we have a blessed hope and a revelation from God that our future is secure in Him. And when those we love reach the end of this mortal coil, we should not grieve like unbelievers do.. for we have a secure hope and a future inheritance that is kept for us in heaven.
When Jesus rose from the dead He ascended to heaven in a resurrected human body and today there is an immortal man, Who loves each one of us deeply.. and He is sitting on the throne of almighty God – waiting for the command from His heavenly Father to come and take us to be with Himself!
We will hear a shout. We will hear the voice of the archangel and we will hear the trump of God.. and we will all be changed from mortal men with corruptible bodies into immortal beings with an incorruptible body – and so we shall ever be with the Lord. And all this will happen in a moment.. in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet call of God. BUT the very first thing that happens at this exciting event is that all the believers who have become part of the Body of Christ.. down through the last two thousand years in this Church-age of grace.. will rise up out of their graves.
The apostles Peter and Paul, John and James.. beloved saints like Mary and Martha that are named in history.. innumerable saints whose names have been long forgotten – and precious saints of our own families whom we have been laid to rest in the dust of the earth will all be raised FIRST – and THEN….. we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.. and so we shall ever be with the Lord. What a joy, What a hope! – what an incredible comfort.. In the midst of this life we may be in death – but death for the Christian holds no fear.. for the enemy of our soul was defeated at the Cross.. and in Christ we have gained the eternal victory.
What a wonderful truth.. that sin and death and pain and sorrow will be done away with. What a privilege to know that we will bear testimony to God’s amazing grace in the eternal ages to come. What a glorious future hope – that we will be forever with the Lord in the company of all the saints of old – who by grace through faith have trusted Christ
What does 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 mean?
“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: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.
This verse is given as “proof” of a pre-tribulation rapture. Of course, it says nothing about a tribulation, but it seems to be the only verse that even vaguely supports the eschatology of those who believe this.
The sensational idea we will be “caught up into the clouds” to be rescued from a great tribulation does not explain why the “dead in Christ” need to be rescued.
So what is this verse talking about? If we are not being snatched away to heaven, what is happening?
Apantesis, the Greek word translated “meet” in 1 Thessalonians 4, is, according to the Souter Lexicon, “almost technical for the arrival of a newly arrived official.”
The idea is to meet to honour and escort. In ancient times, when a king visited, the people would go out to meet him and escort him back to town.
Those welcoming the official would change direction after the meeting and then escort him back to the town from which they had come, not back to his place of origin (see Moulton, Greek Testament Grammar, Vol.1, p.14).
Apantesis is used four times in the Bible. In Matthew 25:1,6, Acts 28:15 and in 1 Thessalonians 4.
“Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.” Matthew 25:1
“And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.” Matthew 25:6
“And from thence, when the brethren heard of us, they came to meet us as far as Appii forum, and The three taverns: whom when Paul saw, he thanked God, and took courage.” Acts 28:15
Notice in Matthew, it is revealed that the virgins had been waiting for the bridegroom to appear. When He did, they met him and escorted him to the banquet hall. They did not go back with him to the place from which he came.
“And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.” Matthew 25:10
The bridegroom did not change directions, reverse course after the waiting virgins met him. Rather, he kept on coming in the original direction from which he started.
The ones who changed direction were the virgins. In Acts, the brethren came out and escorted Paul back to Rome. After they met him they did not return to Caesarea with Paul (which was his place of beginning for this trip).
Paul did not change directions after the waiting brothers met him; rather, he maintained his course to Rome. The ones who changed direction were those who met him.
The Lord’s coming is not our going. It is His coming! We will not be caught up to escape anything. We will be meeting him in the air to honour him in his coming and escort him back to earth.
No matter one’s eschatology, nothing can be proved from this verse other than that this is the appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” Titus 2:13
It is the time of His glory and honour. “When he shall come to be glorified in his saints and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.” 2 Thessalonians 2:10
We are caught up to honour him and escort him to earth.
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 meaning written by Dennis Regling.
Dennis is an Evangelist and founder of Piedmont Christian Ministries.
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What does 1 Thessalonians 4:16 mean?
This is part of one of Scripture’s most often-quoted passages. The event referred to here is called “the rapture,” a moment when Jesus Christ will call all Christians—living and dead—away from the earth to be with Him. Paul’s description here is given as part of his reassurance to the Thessalonian Christians. Earlier verses comforted them with a reminder that believers who have already died will also be raised to life in Christ (1 Thessalonians 4:14). Unlike unbelievers, Christians have a hope of seeing loved ones again, in the presence of Jesus.
Paul assures his readers that Jesus, our Lord, will come in person for Christians. This will be accompanied by a loud command, the voice of an archangel, and a trumpet blast. Whether these are three separate incidents, or three ways of describing the same basic sign, is difficult to tell. The archangel mentioned here might be Michael (Jude 1:9), though Paul does not specify. Combined with the description given in the next verse, this event will apparently be sudden, dramatic, and extremely obvious.
At that time the bodies of departed Christians will rise in resurrection glory and become immortal (1 Corinthians 15:54). The inclusion of the words, “in Christ,” indicates that only Christians will experience resurrection at the rapture, because only Christians have been baptized by the Holy Spirit into the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:13). The phrase, “in Christ,” never occurs in the context of Old Testament believers. They will be resurrected at Christ’s second coming to establish His kingdom on earth (Daniel 12:1–3).
The “cry of command” will likely be Jesus’ command to departed Christians. When Jesus summoned Lazarus to come out of the tomb, He specifically called Lazarus by name: “Lazarus, come out” (John 11:43). A common quip suggests that if Christ had simply said, “Come out,” the bodies of all the dead would have left their burial places.
First Thessalonians 4:13–18 represents an important shift in the subject matter of Paul’s letter. Realizing the Thessalonian believers needed further teaching about Jesus’ return (the rapture) and specifically about what happens to Christians who die before Jesus returns, Paul turns to address these vital matters. He wants his readers to know that death should not cause them to grieve like unbelievers. There is a bright prospect of seeing departed believers again. When Jesus returns from heaven, He will bring deceased Christians with Him. At that time there will be a loud command, the archangel’s voice will be heard, and God’s trumpet will sound. Christians who have died will receive their resurrected bodies, and living Christians will be caught up to join them, to be with the Lord forever. Paul urged the Thessalonian believers to use what he wrote about the rapture to encourage one another.
Chapter 4 starts with an encouragement for the Thessalonian believers to continue their spiritual growth. Their conduct is exemplary, but they need to seek to do even more. Paul especially emphasizes the importance of sexual purity, as well as the need for believers to live peaceful, polite, and productive lives. Paul then begins to discuss the subject of Christ’s return. This begins with a reassurance that believers who have died prior to the return of Christ will be the first ones raised when He comes back for His people. Next will be those still living, all of whom will meet Jesus ”in the air.” Knowledge of our eternal destiny should be encouraging!