“God will bring back with [Jesus] the believers who have died.” 1Th 4:14 NLT
Dealing with death separates us into two categories: The hopeless and the hopeful. The hopeless believe they have nothing to look forward to. Their losses feel permanent—the end of life and all that’s good. But the hopeful have everything to look forward to. Their losses are temporary—the beginning of an endless life filled with God’s finest gifts. God wants you “to know what will happen to the believers who have died so [you] will not grieve like people who have no hope” (v. 13 NLT). Our hope results from knowing these truths:
(1) “We believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again” (v. 14 NLT). All hope begins here: believing in Jesus’ death for our sin and His resurrection to represent us before God. (2) “Since we believe” this, “we also believe that…Jesus returns.” Faith in Christ’s physical return to earth gives us confidence that “God will bring back with him the believers who have died.” God will raise us from our resting places and bring us back again with Jesus (See Ro 8:11). At that moment, “He will take our weak mortal bodies and change them into glorious bodies like his own” (Php 3:21 NLT). Never again will you be vulnerable to cancer, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, strokes, Lou Gehrig’s disease, paralysis, disabilities, weariness, weakness, grief, fear, depression, temptation, addictions, failure, remorse, suicidal thoughts, bipolar disorder, OCD or PTSD or any kind of ailment. You’ll be transformed into the very likeness of Christ. Isn’t that wonderful!