a devotional response to I Thessalonians 4:13 – 18
One way or another God is going to get His children out of this world. This is not a threat; it is a reality.
For this reason, we have hope; Not a hope that is pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking, but a certainty and assurance grounded in the truth of God’s word. Our picture of this hope is the resurrection of Jesus.
Paul wanted to be sure that the Thessalonians understood the foundation of this hope, and he gave us some important truths in these verses.
- There is no need for us to sorrow as those who have no hope. Our hope is established in the very character of God and in His ownership of the believer’s life. We are bought with a price (I Corinthians 6:20), and we are His.
- Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection provide a picture of death for the believer, therefore resurrection is certain.
- Christ will return. He will give the shout of victory, the voice of the archangel will accompany the shout, and the trump of God will sound.
- Whether or not we experience physical death, this will be a time of victory and resurrection for believers.
- We will be with God eternally.
- We are to comfort, not threaten, each other with these truths.
Our finite minds can become so preoccupied with the how of the resurrection that we fail to focus on the glory of Christ’s return. He has given us enough information in His word so that we will not be ignorant or uninformed; this allows us to comfort each other.
In this world of confusion, we must allow the light of these truths to settle our hearts and motivate our service.
Proverbs 10:28 The hope of the righteous shall be gladness: but the expectation of the wicked shall perish.
How Great Thou Art
When Christ shall come with shout of acclamation
and take me home, what joy shall fill my heart.
Then I shall bow in humble adoration
and there proclaim “My God, how great Thou art!”
Carl Boberg, 1885