September 30 2021
Today, Thursday September 30
A Good Question
1 Corinthians 15:51-52 “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed-- in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.”
I have preached the funerals of hundreds of people over the many years of our ministry and I am often asked the question about what literally happens to our loved one when they die. At the funeral home or at the church, where we have shared a message of hope, especially if we knew that our loved one was a believer and “in Christ”, we have talked about how they immediately went to be with the Lord after they drew their last earthly breath. Then at the graveside we talk about how they will resurrect from this grave one day. And I’m sure people standing there are asking the question, “You said at the church they are in heaven and now you are saying they are in the grave, so where are they, in the grave or in heaven?
Luke 16:20-22 indicates that Lazarus, the poor beggar, was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom at the moment of his death. Jesus told the thief that was crucified with Him, “Today you will be with Me in paradise” (Luke 23:43). The Apostle Paul wrote, “We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8). So, we believe that a person’s soul and spirit goes into the presence of the Lord in heaven immediately at their physical death. Remember Jesus said, “He that believes in Me shall never die” (John 11:26). Why? Because they pass into His heavenly presence.
When our loved one dies, we are left with their earthly physical body that with great respect and sorrow, we place in a grave in a cemetery. We believe that this body is so special, (we only get one), and it was the only way we communicated with our friends and loves ones, and recognized and experienced each other, that one day it will be resurrected and reunited with the soul and spirit that has already gone to be with the Lord.
Paul deals with this event with what we call the rapture specifically in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 and 1 Corinthians 15:50-58. When Jesus comes back for His church, “…The dead in Christ shall rise first and then we who are alive will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” “And we shall all be changed, at the last trumpet, in a moment in the twinkling of an eye…”
When we see our loved on that glorious day, we will all have glorified, immortal and incorruptible bodies just like our Lord Jesus Christ had after His resurrection. We will recognized each other and spend the rest of eternity together experiencing the presence of Lord Jesus and the glories of heaven!
By the way, based on scripture, I believe this event, called the rapture could take place anytime, and any day! Maybe today!!!! Are you ready?