1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

Jesus' return

13 Our Christian friends, we want you to understand properly about your friends who have died. Then you will not continue to be sad about them. People who do not hope for any life after death are sad when their friends die. But you should not be upset like those other people. 14 We believe that Jesus died and he rose again after death. So, we also believe that people who have died as Christians will rise again. When God brings Jesus back, he will take the Christians to go with Jesus.

4:13Timothy may have brought news that the Christians at Thessalonica were confused about Christ's return. They were sad about their Christian friends who had died already. They did not know what would happen to those people. Paul wanted them to know that they would all live with Christ for ever. It did not matter that some believers had died before Christ returned.

15 We are telling you the message that the Lord has told to us. This is what will happen when the Lord returns. Those of us who are still alive will not go to meet the Lord first. We will not go before those people who have already died. 16 On that day, the Lord himself will come down from heaven. He will shout with authority. People will hear the voice of the leader of God's angels. They will hear the sound of God's trumpet. Then those people who have died as Christians will become alive again. They will be the first people to rise up. 17 After that, those of us who are still alive will join together with them. God will suddenly take us up into the clouds. In that way, we will all meet the Lord in the sky. So we will all be with the Lord for ever. 18 Because this message is true, tell it to each other. Help one another to be strong, not sad.