Key Theme: Believers are to be stewards of the mysteries of God.
Good morning everyone. We will continue our study on the “Mysteries of God” this morning.
We have learned that
- God was manifest in the flesh [1 Timothy 3:16].
- If you are saved, you have Christ in you, the hope of glory [Colossians 1:26-27].
Last week we learned about Christ and the church [Ephesians 5: 25-32].
As believers, the Lord expects us to be stewards of His mysteries that He has revealed to us in the Bible.
Before we begin the class, let us go to [1 Corinthians 4:1-2] and read it all together.
1 Corinthians 4:1 Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.
1 Corinthians 4:2 Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.
All right. Today we will study the next mystery.
If you have been here with us for a while, you will hear this biblical term mentioned quite often.
It is one of the doctrines in the Bible that need to be well understood.
If you are saved, this is the prophetic event that you should be looking forward to it.
Let us go to [1 Corinthians 15: 51-55].
1 Corinthians 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
1 Corinthians 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
1 Corinthians 15:53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
1 Corinthians 15:54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
1 Corinthians 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
We see the word “mystery” appears again here.
The Rapture is a future event when the Lord Jesus Christ Himself would come and take His church back with Him in the air.
The following event is the Judgment Seat of Christ for saved believers where their works will be judged.
While down here on the earth, the world will experience the Great Tribulation. It is an apocalyptic time that the world has never seen before!
There are two kinds of saved believers involved at the Rapture.
- First is those who died, and their bodies were in the graveyard.
- Second is those who are still alive while the Rapture takes place.
What will happen to saved believers?
For saved believers, who were already dead when the Rapture occurs, they will be brought back to life and will be put on incorruption.
…this corruptible must put on incorruption…
If you are saved, though you die, the grave cannot contain you forever.
… O grave, where is thy victory?…
Your physical body buried in the ground will decay. It will turn to bones.
When the Rapture of the church happens, all dead bodies of saved believers will be resurrected!
For saved believers, who are still alive while the Rapture takes place, they will be caught up without dying and put on immortality.
… this mortal shall have put on immortality…
These people will not experience death.
All of these will happen at a super-fast speed.
… in the twinkling of an eye…
Another passage concerning the Rapture of the church is found in [1 Thessalonians 4:16-17].
1 Thessalonians 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
1 Thessalonians 4:17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
We can see that the Lord Jesus Christ will
…descend from heaven…
He will not send someone to pick up the church!
He will come and take saved believers Himself.
These Scriptures also speak in support of [1 Corinthians 15:54] that we just read.
…the dead in Christ shall rise first… [1 Thessalonians 4:16]
… this corruptible shall have put on incorruption… [1 Corinthians 15:54]
…we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air… [1 Thessalonians 4:17]
…this mortal shall have put on immortality… [1 Corinthians 15:54]
Let us also go to [Philippians 3:20-21].
Philippians 3:20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:
Philippians 3:21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
Again, we can see that the Lord will change our sinful and physical body to be a “glorious” body.
It is the body that is untouched by sin and corruption.
We learned that Christian life is no exception to troubles, heartache, and pain.
Right now, our physical and sinful body is not yet redeemed.
This body is still corrupt. This also explains why saved believers are still capable of doing any sins!
Let us read [Romans 8:23].
Romans 8:23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
Again, this verse speaks in support of the Rapture of the church.
When the Lord Jesus Christ comes back to take His church with Him, then our physical body will be redeemed.
Right now, all saved believers have a deposit of the Holy Spirit.
To simply say, it means that if you are already saved, you belong to the Lord Jesus Christ. You are His.
That is why we are commanded to comfort one another with these words [1 Thessalonians 4:18].
1 Thessalonians 4:18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
When the Rapture of the church happens, our life troubles will soon be over.
For saved believers, this is our incredible hope.
In summary, the Rapture of the church
- is an instantaneous event.
- concerns both dead and alive Christians.
- will have the Lord Jesus Christ Himself come to gather saved believers to meet Him in the air.
- will have all saved believers (both alive and dead) received a glorified resurrection body.