Summary: The Rapture is coming (Power Point is available upon request)
1 THESS. 4:13-18 “WHEN JESUS COMES DOWN AND THE SAINTS GO UP”
A) The coming of the Lord is the principle theme of both Thessalonian epistles!
* In these verses, Paul assures the believers that their dead loved ones are safe with Jesus, and
will come with Him in the clouds in the air.
* He explains that those who have died in the Lord will be raised first. (Why?)
* And then we which are alive and remain … we’ll all be changed.
B) To the Christian, death is sleep! * No, the believer doesn’t become unconscious in spirit.
* The body goes back to dust and the soul goes to God. (The beggar Lazarus)
* Jesus said to the thief on the cross, “Today shalt thou be with …”
* The word “sleep” simply means “the death of the body.”
C) In Luke 8:52, Jairus’ daughter … Jesus said of her, “She’s not dead, but sleepeth!”
* He said the same thing concerning Lazarus, the brother of Mary and Martha – John 11.
* So I understand why death is referred to as sleep … Sleep is a temporary state.
* The early Christians called their burial grounds “cemetery,” which the Greek word means
D) The Bible nowhere teaches “soul sleep!” * The soul of man will never cease to be conscious.
* Fifty billion years from now, you and I will either be with Jesus or roasting in hell.
* v.14 closes with, “Even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him.”
* When He comes, He will bring those that’s already in heaven with Him.
E) There are four things I want us to see, “When Jesus Comes Down And The Saints Go Up!”
(1) THE SAINTS WILL ALL BE TOGETHER! * Notice v.17 …….
A) First, the statement “in the clouds,” in the Greek signifies “amid clouds …….”
* And it means that the saints will be surrounded by clouds which will act as a giant chariot and
we will be carried away on their downy softness.
* In Acts 1:9-11, the angels at Christ’s ascension promised He’s come again as He went away.
* In Matt. 17:1-8, on the Mount of Transfiguration, “a bright cloud” overshadowed them, and a
voice from the cloud said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am …; hear ye Him.”
B) There’s something wonderful and majestic about clouds!
* Nahum tells us in Nahum 1:3 that “clouds are the dust of His feet.”
* The glorious event of the rapture will be surrounded by clouds and the curtains of the atmosphere
will hover about us as we are raised into the air to be with our blessed Lord.
C) Now I want to focus on the word “together!”
* The word means: “With each other; in company; into one gathering.”
* The Greek word in v.17 means: “At the same time.”
* One day, all the saints of God will be together … No more parting again!
D) But I want to look at it in a different aspect … “To be together now!”
* Acts 2:44 “And all that believed were together, and had all things common;”
* Acts 4:32 “And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither
said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things
E) That’s the desire of every pastor … Things happen when Christians are “together!”
* In Acts 2:1-4, “And when the day of Pentecost was … they were all with one accord in one
place. They were all filled with the Holy Ghost and souls were saved,” when they were together!
F) But people are not like that today! * Turn to 1 Cor. 3:1-4 and look at the average church …
* “Carnal” means “fleshly, unregenerate.” * Bunch of burping church members.
* Carnal Christians are under the control of the fleshly nature, not the Spirit of God.
* Paul said they were spiritual babies … BUT BABIES GROW UP IN TIME!
G) Acts 18:11 tells us that Paul stayed in Corinth 1½ years teaching the Word!
* You would think after 1½ years, they’d grow up, but they didn’t.
* 1 Cor. 13:11 “When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a
child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”
H) Paul says, “There is among you envying, and strife, and divisions!”
* You cannot be together by dividing.
I) “Envy,” means “desires to deprive another person of what he possesses,” while “jealousy”
means, “desires to have the same sort of thing the other has!”
* If God sent another epistle to the churches of today, He’d say the same warning.