Main point summary
Dear friends, we should not be concerned with what happens to those who have died before us because the Lord has told us that when He returns, we will all be taken up to heaven with Him.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, g that you may not grieve as others do h who have no hope.
Dear friends, the questions continues to be raised about what happens to those who have died and are buried. As believers we should not be saddened when a person you know passes on before us.
For i since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him j those who have fallen asleep.
We already know that it was Christ who died first for us and it was Him who was resurrected in order that all believers will be with be brought back to life and be with Him always.
For this we declare to you k by a word from the Lord, 1 that l we who are alive, who are left until m the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep.
This being true, we can say with utter and complete confidence, according to what the Lord, Himself, has told us, those who have gone before will not go to heaven before those who are alive today,
For n the Lord himself will descend o from heaven p with a cry of command, with the voice of q an archangel, and r with the sound of the trumpet of God. And s the dead in Christ will rise first.
but rather they will be called with us and we will rise to heaven as one when Christ returns from heaven to gather us home. His voice will be heard through the archangel and His call will be the sound of the trumpet and then those who have gone before will rise first to be followed by those who are alive today.
Then we who are alive, who are left, will be t caught up together with them u in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so v we will always be with the Lord.
We will all be carried up, to walk in the clouds with our Lord, to be with Him forever.
Therefore encourage one another with these words.
Knowing this we should always embolden each other with these words, reminding each other of the promises our Lord has made.
vs 13 Paul continues with his theme of encouragement, instruction and exhortation to the Thessalonians by reassuring them of Christ's word for the Christian. vs 14 Paul reminds them of their core belief, that Christ died for us, was resurrected and sits at the right hand of God the Father and vs 15-16 He will return to raise up all to be with Him in heaven, not only believers of today but all believers who have gone before. vs 17-1 8 This fact should be a source of hope for them and they should continually remind each other of this to prevent any backsliding.
1 Thessalonians Outline I. Greetings 1:1 A. Greetings and blessings to the Thessalonians. 1:1 II. Main Body 1:2-5:22 A. Encouraging the faith of the Thessalonians 1:2-10 1. Thank God for their faithfulness and labor 1:2 2. Recognize their dedication comes from true understanding. 1:3-7 3. Reports from others concerning their love and acceptance of Paul 1:8-10 B. Reciprocal ministry between Paul and the Thessalonians 2:1-16 1. Paul's ministry to them. 2:1-11 2. Their ministry to Paul. 2:12-16 C. Paul's disappointment 2:17-3:5 1. Satan interfered with his visit. 2. Paul sends an emissary (Timothy). D. Timothy's report 3:6--13 1. Paul receives comfort from Timothy's report 3:6-10 2. He blesses them for the steadfastness. 3:11-13 E. Paul's instruction to the Thessalonians. 4:1-12 1. Continue in their walk with the Lord and stay pure. 4:1-8 2. Remember their brotherly love and to live a life pleasing to God. 4:9-12 F. Paul's exhortation to remain committed to the Lord. 4:13-5:11 1. Stay alert and hopeful for the Lord's return. 4:13 2. Be steadfast in their belief that He is coming. 4:13-18 3. They do not need to know the day or time. 5:1-2 4. Stand firm, be prepared and do not falter in their belief 5:3-10 5. Always encourage and lift up one another. 5:11 G. Final instructions from Paul 5:12-22 1. Respect their leaders for their work and live in peace with others 5:12-13 2. Work for the Lord, rejoice always. 5:14-18 3. Pray without ceasing and give thanks in all circumstances. 5:19-22 III. Benediction and closing 5:23-28 A. Blessings and peace to them all. B. Request for their prayers and spread the word of this letter.
Through this course, I have learned that there is much more to simply reading and understanding the words written in the Bible. We must listen to the Holy Spirit to be able to accurately interpret and explain the Lord's Words to others. Also I have been reminded to be careful of my interpretation of verses so as not to interject my own reasoning of what the words actually say. I will be able to use what I have learned in my exegesis of scripture. I think I will continue with the studies in arc and bracketing.