The Return of Christ for the Church

1st Thessalonians 4:13-18

1st Thessalonians 4:13-18: But 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. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15 For 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. 16 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: 17 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. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

  • The theme of this book is the coming of Christ for His church.
  • All five chapters end with a reference to the soon coming of Christ.
    • Paul relates Christ’s return to salvation.

1st Thessalonians 1:9-10: For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; 10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

  • Paul relates Christ’s return to service.

1st Thessalonians 2:19-20: For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming? 20 For ye are our glory and joy.

  • Paul relates Christ’s return to stability.

1st Thessalonians 3:12-13: And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you: 13 To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.

  • Paul relates Christ’s return to sorrow.

1st Thessalonians 4:13-18: But 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. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15 For 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. 16 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: 17 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. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

  • Paul relates Christ’s return to sanctification

1st Thessalonians 5:23- And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

How do we know for sure that Christ will return for the Church?

First, because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

  • Let’s look at the logic that Paul uses.
    • First, he states that Jesus died. VS 14
    • Secondly, he states that Jesus rose from the dead. VS 14
  • If Jesus wasn’t alive He wouldn’t be able to come back for us.
  • He will return for the church just as He promised to.

John 14:3- And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

Secondly, because of the revelation of Jesus Christ.

1st Thessalonians 4:15- For 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.

  • Do you put your faith in the Word of God? We exhibit faith on a daily basis.
  • If we are always putting our faith in man, why can’t we put our faith in God?

1st John 5:9a- If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son.

Hebrews 6:18b- in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us:

Titus 1:2- In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

  • We can believe with 100 percent certainty that the return of Christ will happen.
  • Why hasn’t Jesus come back yet?

2nd Peter 3:3-8: Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, 4 And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: 6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: 7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. 8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

  • People will mock us for believing in the return of Christ.
  • Why has the Lord tarried his return?

2nd Peter 3:9- The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

  • So people can repent from their sins and accept Him as their Savior.
  • Are you ready for Christ’s return?

Do you know Christ as your Savior?  Do you know for sure you are going to heaven when you die?  You can know for sure you are going to heaven and that your sins are forgiven!

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