1 Thessalonians 4:9–18 (NKJV)

9 But concerning brotherly love you have no need that I should write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another; 10 and indeed you do so toward all the brethren who are in all Macedonia. But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more; 11 that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, 12 that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.

I Thessalonians 4:9-12

Paul continues to instruct the Thessalonians in this passage concerning Christian living. He tells them to love one another as they have been taught by God. He says that they should even increase in their love for their fellow church members and to all who are in Macedonia. He then instructs them to lead a quiet life, to mind their own business, to work hard, to be decent to those who are outside the church. These actions will produce a life with little or no want or lack. He basically is instructing the church to be good members of the community, causing no trouble and being responsible. loving everyone with the love of Christ. This is great advice for them and for us still today.

13 But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.
15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.

I Thessalonians 4:13-18

Paul then moves into sharing an understanding of what happens to the dead in the Lord. Although death brings sorrow to those left behind, it is important to frame this event in the facts concerning the resurrection. Death may seem final on earth, but it is just a transition between the here and the eternal. God will raise the dead and bring them with Him when He comes again. He then gives an inspired explanation of the resurrection, as the dead in Christ will rise first, and then those alive who know Christ in salvation will rise to be with them in the air. Then all the saints will meet the Lord in the air and be with Him forever. All this will be accompanied by obvious and awesome signs that only the redeemed will hear: an archangel will cry out, and the trumpet of God will sound. The Lord will descend from heaven with a shout, and the resurrection will commence. What a glorious day that will be! What a powerful and awe-inspiring experience. Righteous men, saved by the blood of Jesus, will be translated from earth to heaven and live with Him forevermore. This is why we worship. This is why we serve. This is the end result of a life lived with Christ. Make that day your goal and live every day in His service until He comes.

Artwork from https://img.heartlight.org/overlazy/creations/5582.jpg

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