The Apostle Paul thanked God for the church at Thessalonica. Persecution and trials came early for them, but these young Christians were sincere in seeking God. Their faith and their love toward each other grew! That is the kind of fellowship you want to be in; where you have faith and love abounding toward one another. It’s interesting how persecution and trials can bring the church closer together in the Spirit. – A person really can’t serve and experience fellowship with Jesus Christ unless you have real commitment. There cannot be anything that is more important for a Christian. So, it cannot be “Well, if it isn’t raining I’ll be in church, or if I’m not busy I’ll go to church.” True commitment to Jesus always comes when persecution and trials hit our lives. Real depth of relationship with Jesus, and great faith comes in the middle of hard times. And with that relationship, there comes tremendous faith and great love for fellow Christians.
Someone asked: “What kind of body will we have in the resurrection?” The answer is that our present bodies are temporary and disposable. “Flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of Heaven”. There are “celestial bodies and terrestrial bodies.” Bodies designed for earth and bodies designed for heaven. The bodies we walk around in today are not designed for heaven. They are terrestrial bodies. When Christians die, our natural bodies return to dust, but we are raised in a spiritual body prepared for life in the heavens. The REAL me is Spirit. My physical body is the expression of who I am, but it isn’t the REAL me. In fact, every cell of my physical body is constantly being destroyed and replaced, every 7 years. My Spirit is what makes me who I am, When God gives me my new body, my Spirit will be at home in a body that perfectly represents who I am, and it will last forever. That is the Resurrected Body. 1 Cor. 15
Christ’ return willbe a surprise to the wicked. It will take them unaware. Just at that moment when they least expect it Christ will come. And just as a thief takes away, so will Christ take away their fleshly lives, and destroy all of their earthly hopes at His coming. (1 Thess. 5 – Rev.6:16,17 – – The Holy Spirit writes: “They shall not escape.” – They shall not escape by their own power or force or wisdom. They shall not escape even by annihilation – which they might even desire – but which shall not come to them. JesusChrist willreturn. We expect the dissolution of this present world. We cannot know the hour, but since we know that Jesus will return for His Bride, the Church,we look with joy and anticipation to His return.
The words “caught up” are translated “rapturo” in the Latin Bible (1 Thess.4). This is where we get our English word rapture. We who are alive at this time will be raptured by the force of God’s Spirit at the trumpet call of God. We will be caught up together to a meeting in the air with our Lord Jesus and the Christians who have died before us. This is not the Second Coming of Christ. This is the Rapture, when Christ comes for His Bride, before His Second Coming (John 14). The Marriage Supper is a time we will be with the Lord in heaven. At the Second Coming He returns to earth, and we will come back with Him to rule for a thousand years (Rev.19) and we will forever be with Him. Paul told us to comfort one another with these words. Set your heart & mind on eternity where we will live forever with Jesus.