TEXT: 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18

As believers, we are comforted with the anticipated, imminent return of Christ for us. We are not looking for the undertaker, but the “Uppertaker”! We are waiting on Gabriel to call, not the grave! We have the promise that the same Jesus who ascended into Heaven is coming again to receive us unto Himself.

In 1 Thessalonians 4, Paul is instructing the Thessalonian Christians concerning what will happen to living saints when the Saviour returns in the clouds. The wonderful text tells us that the Lord Himself will descend from Heaven with a shout! Christ will not touch down upon the earth, but we will rise up to meet in the air! The graves will open, and the dead in Christ shall rise first, then all of the living born again people will be raptured up to be with Jesus.

There is an interesting mention of the “trump of God” in the text. Especially in Bible times, and even now in military settings, the trumpet played an important role in people’s lives. The trumpet’s calls would serve as a way of getting a message out to the masses in a hurry. Just by its tune, the trumpet could pass information onto an entire city or army.

There are a few standard calls of the trumpet. Here are some to consider that are especially applicable when we consider the rapture of the church:

1. The Trumpet Would Call to Rise!

When the trumpet blew in the morning, soldiers knew that it was time to rise from their slumber. When the trump of God sounds, the dead will rise from their graves, and those of us living will alike rise into the sky!

2. The Trumpet Would Call to Rally!

When the trumpet blew its certain melody, the soldier would understand it was time to gather up! It was time to assemble. Quickly, they would leave their bunks or other business and meet together at the appointed place. When God’s trumpet blasts, all Christians will assemble together for the first time! What a meeting in the clouds?!

3. The Trumpet Would Call to Remove!

When it was time to pack up camp or move onto another location, the trumpeter would play the proper notes. The army would begin to pack up and make their way to a new location. When God’s trumpet sounds, we will likewise be removing! We will be saying “goodbye” to this world and “hello” to glory!

“I hope the Lord comes back tonight and gives me a tongue as long as this tabernacle and lets me wag it at the devil all the way up to glory!” -Billy Kelly

ILLUSTRATION: A little girl had been listening while her mother’s friends had been speaking about the near return of the Lord. After some hours, she was missed. She was found looking out of a window at the top of the house. Asked what she was doing, she said, “Oh, Mother, I heard you say Jesus might come today, and I wanted to be the first to see Him!” -Sunday School Times

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