Have you heard? We’re ‘gonna be raptured! What’s that? Well…
Definition of rapture: 1) overwhelming happiness: a euphoric transcendent state in which somebody is overwhelmed by happiness or delight and unaware of anything else. 2) mystical transportation: (Christianity) a mystical experience in which somebody believes he or she is transported into the spiritual realm, sometimes applied to the second coming of Jesus Christ, when true believers are expected to rise up to join Him in heaven.
People talk about the 2nd Advent, or second coming of Christ, but did you know Jesus will come 2 more times? The first time He’ll be in the air, and we’ll get raptured up into heaven (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17), and the second time we (the saints & the angels) will come back with Him for the battle of Armageddon (at the end of the 7 year tribulation) (Revelations 19:11-21 & chapter 20). Well, at least that’s what God’s Word says in my bible. I’ll be sharing the Scriptures so you’ll get to read about it, too! This will probably be a long series so, are you up to it? All information will be taken from my King James Version bible; running references! As always, seek out your pastors for clarification. I include a lot of Scripture to try to give you the full meaning, and not take anything out of context.
1 Thessalonians chapter 4 verses 1-4 King James Version
“1Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more.
2For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus.
3For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:
4That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour;”
We are the vessel, so we should keep ourselves sanctified (holy), and not be fornicating! (Fornication is sexual relations in an unmarried state).
Verses 5-7: “5Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God:
6That no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified.
7For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.”
Concupiscence means having powerful feelings of physical desire. Paul says (in 1 Corinthians 7:7-9) that you need to get married if you’re “burning” with lust. God can take that away if you sincerely ask Him. I love the King James Version because I have to use my dictionary a lot, and therefore learn more big words!
Verses 8-12 “8He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his Holy Spirit.
9But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.
10And indeed ye do it toward all the brethren which are in all Macedonia: but we beseech you, brethren, that ye increase more and more;
11And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you;
12That ye may walk honestly toward them that are without, and that ye may have lack of nothing.”
There it is! Did you catch it? Verse 11 says “do your own business and study to be quiet!” So, ‘shut up and mind your own business’ is actually in the bible! But a nice way to say it would be to say “Hey, 1 Thessalonians 4:11; look it up!” Hahahaha!
Verses 13-14 “13But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
14For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.”
Being asleep “in Jesus” are those who have believed in Him yet have died and are in their graves.
Verses 15-18 “15For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
16For 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:
17Then 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.
18Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”
And there you have it! Verse 17 is our rapture. So, “comfort each other with these words.” If you believe in Jesus Christ, whether you have died or are alive, He will rapture us up with Him.
Next week (Lord willing) I’ll share the column reference notes on 1 Thessalonians 4:17 above, and much more!