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Author Topic: 1 TH 4:17  (Read 2457 times)

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1 TH 4:17
« on: September 17, 2006, 03:04:26 AM »

These are some curious verses, that many try to prove the rapture theory.

(1Th 4:15)  For we say this to you in the Word of the Lord, that we the living who remain to the coming of the Lord will not at all go before those who have fallen asleep.

(1Th 4:16)  Because the Lord Himself shall come down from Heaven with a commanding shout of an archangel's voice, and with God's trumpet. And the dead in Christ will rise again first.

(1Th 4:17)  Then we who remain alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to a meeting with the Lord in the air. And so we will always be with the Lord.

(1Th 4:18)  So, then, comfort each other with these words.

To understand we must know who are the ones who are 'alive' and 'asleep'. 

(Rom 6:11)  So also you count yourselves to be truly dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

(Eph 2:1)  and you being dead in deviations and sins,

(Eph 2:2)  in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the ruler of the authority of the air, the spirit now working in the sons of disobedience,

(Eph 2:3)  among whom we also all conducted ourselves in times past in the lusts of our flesh, doing the things willed of the flesh and of the understanding, and were by nature the children of wrath, even as the rest.

(Eph 2:4)  But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,

(Eph 2:5)  even we being dead in deviations, He made us alive together with Christ (by grace you are being saved),

(Eph 2:6)  and raised us up together and seated us together in the heavenlies in Christ Jesus,

(Eph 2:7)  that He might demonstrate in the ages coming on, the exceeding great riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.

(1Co 15:56)  Now the sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the Law;

(1Co 15:57)  but thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!

(1Co 15:58)  So that, my beloved brothers, you be firm, immovable, abounding in the work of the Lord always, knowing that your labor is not without fruit in the Lord.

(Eph 5:14)  Because of this, He says, Arise, sleeping ones and stand up out of the dead ones, and Christ will shine on you. No OT passage

One of the greatest things I see about the life of Christ is His willingness to help those in need, heal the sick, forgive the sinner, raise the dead.  His whole life was for us and to follow the Fathers will, nothing in and of Himself. 

Those above verses in 1 TH 4:15-18, are speaking to us, to not worry about those who are asleep or dead (spiritually speaking), to the truths we know.  Comfort each other that they too, will come into the knowledge of Christ, for they will go before us.  And to the ones who have Christ Spirit, these are very comforting words, because we have the love of our brother and sister.

Any thoughts?

God bless,



  • Guest
Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2006, 12:29:11 PM »

Hi Gary,
I too have heard from many who quote and try to prove 1Th4:15-17 is the rapture theory.

Your post has brought a light :o on this matter to me, because I thought that the elect who were physically dead would rise first before the elect who are still physically alive at the time of Christ's coming. In God's timing, the truth shall be revealed to me!!

I've re-read the verses and compared in E-Sword different translations, and conclude that verse 17 is in fact those who are alive (quickened), plus those who remain will be caught up after the dead (asleep)...
Verifying that yes, at the time of Christ's return, all who are spiritually dead will rise first, then the elect will rise to meet Him.

Now my questions, this must be after the great white throne judgement?
When does the 1000 yr reign fall within this scope?

Apparently lots for me to study on this, may God open my eyes and all others who have not yet had this revelation.

Thanks Gary.

Much love,



  • Guest
Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2006, 12:45:51 PM »

what about this verse, any here see a relationship to I Thes. or a totally different subject???

Mat 13:30  Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

Tares gathered first??


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Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2006, 11:13:32 PM »

The thousand year reign...I do not believe in a literal thousand year fleshly reign.† This comes from the book of Revelation, and it signifies the unveiling or revealing of Christ and His kingdom.

I will not get into the specifics, and only say that my hope is that we do not make the same mistake the people did when Jesus came over 2000 years ago.† They were looking for a literal king to come and usher in a physical, literal kingdom.

The NT is full of verses that state exactly what His kingdom is.† Seek and ye shall find are good words from our Lord.

God bless,

« Last Edit: September 18, 2006, 03:50:02 PM by bobbys43 »


  • Guest
Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2006, 03:20:13 AM »

I have put together these excerpts from Ray's articles,
this is an attempt to explaining the return of Christ and the 1000 year reign.

This is from Ray's paper on 'Exposing the Secret Rapture Theory'

It is Godís plan and purpose to bring many sons into His family. When new Jerusalem descends out of heaven, it is stated that God will dwell with them on the earth. Did we think that God will be dwelling in New Jerusalem all by Himself, alone? That would, of course, defeat His very purpose of "dwelling with them."

Matt. 24 definitely includes the Jewish saints in that assembling and the actual gathering does not take place on the Mount of Olives. If by the "air" it is speaking of the literal air in our atmosphere (rather than to the jurisdiction of power said to be in the air in Eph. 2:2, which is more likely), then there are at least three proofs that this meeting in Matt. 24 takes place in the same "air" as I Thes. 4. Read Matt. 24:31 carefully:

"And He shall be dispatching His messengers with a loud sounding trumpet, and they shall be assembling His chosen from the four WINDS ..." (Mat. 24:31). Websterís wind, moving AIR! (Emphasis mine).

"... and they shall see the Son of Mankind coming on the clouds of heaven with Power and much glory" (Mat. 24:30). Clouds are only found "in the air." Even fog is still "in the air." No clouds rise righter than "the air."

Although it doesnít actually say that Christ came from outer space to then be located on the clouds of heaven, many, nonetheless, assume such a thing. Regardless, wind is in heaven, clouds are in heaven, and air is in heaven. To come from any of them requires being "in the air." And as all astronauts know it is not possible to return to earth without going through "the air." There may be "holes" in the ozone, but there are no holes "in the air."
And absolutely Paul uses this expression in association with the day of the Lord. In I Thes. 4:16 Paul says that Christ will return "with the trumpet of God." In I Cor. 15:52 Paul tells us that Christ will return "at the last trump." And Paul associates Christ coming with "the day of the Lord" (I Thes. 5:2). "The day of the Lord" (II Thes. 2:2). The Thessalonians receive "rest and ease," along with Paul, "at the unveiling of the Lord Jesus" (II Thes. 1:7).

It is the unveiling that ushers in the day of the Lord. Likewise, the same resurrection mentioned in I Cor. 15:51-52 will take place, "in the DAY OF OUR LORD" (I Cor. 1:08). I have already conclusive proven that "the day" and "the day of the Lord:" of I Thes. Chapter 5 are one and the same day (See again argument #4).

At Christís second coming He gathers His elect and sets up His kingdom. Twice Paul tells us that the elect will be gathered at the sound of a trumpet (I Thes. 4:16), at the last trump (I Cor. 15:52), and it is then when the saints (ALL the saints, I Thes.3:13) will receive their "rest and ease" from the trials and sorrows of this life, and Paul plainly says that this will occur: "... AT the unveiling of the Lord Jesus from heaven with His powerful messengers, in flaming fire, dealing out vengeance to those who are not acquainted with God and those who are not obeying the evangel of our Lord Jesus Christ--who shall incur the justice of eonian extermination from the face of the Lord, and from the glory of His strength--whenever He may be coming to be glorified in HIS SAINTS and to be marveled at in ALL WHO BELIEVE (seeing that our testimony to you was believed) IN THAT DAY"

Now this is not hard to follow. The above is Paulís description of how Christ will return for "all who believe." He comes in power and glory and is dealing out vengeance to the ungodly and is being glorified in His saints. This same description of His second coming is found in Rev 11:15-18, "... And loud voices occurred in heaven, saying, ĎThe kingdom of this world became our Lordís and His Christís and He shall be reigning for the eons of the eons. Amen!í... Thou hast taken Thy great power and does reign.

"The heaven, even the heavens, are the Lordís; but the EARTH hath He given to the children of men" (Psalm 115:6). One more, "... for we are your glorying (even as you also are ours) in THE DAY OF OUR LORD JESUS" (II Cor. 1:14).

Not in the "rapture," but in "the day of our Lord."

I seriously doubt whether anyone could prove to us that the place where God dwells, "heaven," is actually a specific geographical location so many light years from the earth on some galactic rock in outer space. In the same way "eternity" is not "a very long time." They are both a condition or a realm. God is in us, while He is in Heaven, while He is also simultaneously, EVERYWHERE! 


"Or are you not aware that the saints shall judge THE WORLD? And if the world is being judged by you, are you unworthy of the least tribunals? Are you not aware that we shall be judging MESSENGERS(1Cor 6:3), not to mention lifeís affairs?" Notice that the same "you" and "we" are to judge the "world" AND "messengers." And the judging of messengers is linked with judging "lifeís affairs." "Lifeís affairs is not something going on in OUTER SPACE! Lifeís affairs are things on the earth, which is the same location at which we will be "judging messengers!" And these two judgments are not separated by thousands of years.

I have never gone into outer space, however, guess what? I have and still do wrestle creatures among the celestials! "... for it is not ours to wrestle with blood and flesh, but with the sovereignties, with the authorities, with the world mights of this darkness, with spiritual forces of wickedness AMONG THE CELESTIALS" (Eph. 6:12)! Now think for a moment, if we can right here and now, from the earth, wrestle with creatures among the celestials, why canít we also judge and instruct them as well, FROM THE EARTH?

When Christ returns to set up His kingdom on earth, He brings the place of authority or rulership that He has prepared for the apostles with Him so that "... where I am, YOU ALSO MAY BE" (John 14:3). During Christís reign on earth His apostles will be WITH THE LORD. Now notice I Thes. 4:17 where it is stated that when Christ returns to the Gentile saints "... thus shall we always be together WITH THE LORD ..." We also will be with the Lord on the earth, not in outer space.

There is much that could be said regarding how Christ actually comes and what He will do after He arrives. Will He literally ride out of Heaven on a flying white horse with fire shooting out of His eyes and a long sword coming out of His mouth followed by literal armies ready to do battle against the few remaining and helpless humans on earth, and all this happening while the lightning is flashing and silver trumpets are blasting? Probably NOT. But, just like the rest of Revelation, the things that these symbols, metaphors, and figurative language represent will certainly be GLORIOUS, but thatís a subject for another paper. Remember that we have Godís promise that the wise shall understand. We all need to pray for wisdom, thatís for sure. -------------------------------

What is our next reward if we "continue" overcoming?

"Öand will give him a white stone and a in the stone a new name" (Ver. 17)

Now we learned that this stone is really a pebble which is a symbol for a ballot, which acquits us of guilt and justifies us, allowing for our admission or entrance into the Kingdom, signed and signified by Jesus Himself. If we continue to overcome, this white signed, ballot stone of entrance into the Kingdom is waiting for us with OUR NAME on it. Remember "as Jesus is, SO ARE WEÖ" His name is OUR name. If we continue to overcome, we will be given another great reward.

"And he that overcomes and keeps my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations" (Ver. 26).

Say, did you notice that most important phrase, "keeps my works UNTO THE END?" Do you suppose there was a purpose for adding those words at this place in the rewards? You know there was. We must "keep on, keeping on." We cannot look back. We cannot fail to continue in Christís words and works. We must take up our cross. We must suffer persecution. We must "fight the good fight." We must "keep the faith." We must "pray without ceasing." And we must make it to the end,

"And you shall be hated of all men for my nameís sake: but he that endures TO THE END SHALL BE SAVED" (Matt. 10:22).

THEN we will be qualified to have "power over the nations." But reigning requires that we be RIGHTEOUS. We must reign the nations with spiritual power, not with military might. Our motives and our love must be PURE.

"He that overcomes, the same shall be clothed in white raiment" (Rev. 3:5).

The "white raiment" is the same "clean white, fine linen" of Rev. 19:8, "for fine linen is the righteousness of the saints" (Ver. 08). When we attain to this degree of overcoming, God makes an absolute promise to us:

"I will NOT blot out his name out of the book of life" (Ver. 5).

Just how high do the rewards of Jesus to the overcomer go?

"Him that overcomes will I make a PILLAR IN THE TEMPLE OF MY GOD" (Ver. 12).

A pillar is a main support in a temple. It speaks of a position of GREAT DISTINGUISHED RESPONSIBILITY at the Spiritual Headquarters of the entirety of the universe in Mt. Zion. But if He is going to give us ALL THAT HE HAS, He expects us to do as He DID and become what He IS.

"To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me on My throne, EVEN AS I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in His throne" (Ver. 21).

We are to overcome "even as" Jesus Christ conquered and overcame. What was it that Jesus Christ "overcame?" John 16:33,

"These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: but BE OF GOOD CHEER; I HAVE OVERCOME THE WORLD!"

Jesus Christ overcame EVERYTHING IN THE WORLD, INCLUDING THE WORLD! And here is Godís command to the believer who would become an overcomer and conqueror in Christ Jesus:

"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world, If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world [which MUST be overcome and conquered!]" (I John 2:15-16).

We are to also "overcome the world" just as Jesus did. Not by ourselves, but by Jesus "Christ IN us, the hope of GLORY." Christ lives His life IN the believer, and in the believer Christ will, "overcome the world," over and over again in each new believer. And then one day, Jesus Christ will say to YOU, "Sit with Me on My throneóWe are going to save the Universe together."

We already read in Romans 8 that the whole creation is groaning for the manifestation of Sons and Daughters (saviours) to free this world from its vanity and corruption.

And so, there is ONE church, and all overcomers from that church receive ONE reward, the SAME reward, and that reward is CHRIST and all that His many symbols and names represent, all that He IS ("as He is, so are WE in the world"), and in the Kingdom of God as well. These are the highest and most glorious honors ever to be bestowed upon a man or woman of the human race!

"He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches."


During this period of Christ's reign, Satan will be chained.
But then he is released near the end, it is to cause the nations to raise up and form an army.

Rev 20:1  Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding in his hand the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain.
Rev 20:2  And he seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years,
Rev 20:3  and threw him into the pit, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he might not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were ended. After that he must be released for a little while.

Now when they come up against the saints that is when God's fire will stop the army.

Rev 20:9  And they marched up over the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, but fire came down from heaven and consumed them, 

This is what I have gotten from Ray's articles and scripture studies,
I have tried to put it together in order, to make it easier to understand.
Of course this is open for discussion.

mercy, peace, and love
« Last Edit: July 01, 2014, 12:54:49 AM by Kat »


  • Guest
Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2006, 12:47:26 PM »

The thousand year reign...I do not believe in a literal thousand year fleshly reign.† This comes from the book of Revelation, and it signifies the unveiling or revealing of Christ and His kingdom.

I must agree with you Gary, if 'the thousand year reign' is a literal number, I suspect it's the first literal number in the book of the Revelation.† †If there is something 'literal' about the book I would say it's the fact that it is literally filled with spiritual symbolism.† ;D


  • Guest
Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2006, 01:49:46 PM »

Hi Lightseeker,

the 1000 years of Christ's reign, is no more literal than the 1000 hills.

Psa 50:10  For every beast of the forest is Mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills.
It is just used to express that it is, a definite period of time.

mercy, peace, and love


  • Guest
Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #7 on: September 19, 2006, 12:49:22 AM »

Thank you Gary and Kat for posting your comments and references.
There is much study to be had.

For over a week now, I've been reflecting on the truth God has revealed to me so far, and how clear some things are.... and then this thread pops up!

Seeking His truth is what I will now do.



  • Bible-Truths Forum Member
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Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2006, 07:04:29 AM »

Now is when the whole physical earth is destoryed, by God with fire.

mercy, peace, and love

Hi Lightseeker,

the 1000 years of Christ's reign, is no more literal than the 1000 hills.

Psa 50:10 For every beast of the forest is Mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills.
It is just used to express that it is, a definite period of time.

mercy, peace, and love

This is why I have such a hard time thinking that all of Revelation is to be fulfilled in the future...people talk about the symbolism all over Revelation, how none of the numbers are literal, etc., but they also believe that the earth will literally be destroyed, there will be a physical coming of Christ, a literal city descending from heaven, and so on. How does one decide what is literal and what is symbolic? Do people really think that literal stars, which are thousands of times larger than earth, will literally fall to the earth (Rev. 6:13)? Probably why do they pick out other things to be literal? If anything is to be considered literal, why is it not the TIME STATEMENTS? These time statements predicted Christ's return in that generation (Matt. 24:34), a judgment that was ABOUT TO come (Acts 24:15, 25), and most of all, an angel telling John NOT to seal up the prophecy, because the time was NEAR (Rev. 22:10). This is the exact opposite of what the angel told Daniel, who was to seal HIS prophecy until the time of the end. (Dan. 12:4)


  • Guest
Re: 1 TH 4:17
« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2006, 10:51:36 AM »

Hi Extol,

I do know where you are coming from.
Many of us here, have been seeking to understand these things for years.
The understanding will come, when God opens your eyes to it.
But don't be discouraged, that may be now.
Seek and you shall find, we must search the scriptures diligently.
The Bible is full of symbols and metaphors, for the same reason that Christ spoke in parables,
so that the multitudes would not understand.

Below is an excerpt from Ray's Lake of Fire series, 
that explane about the symbols of Rev.
Ray has been given incredible insight into understanding the Bible,
studying his papers will help a lot.

The first eleven verses of Chapter one in Revelation are an introduction regarding where, how, and what John is going to record for us. Much of this introduction can be taken literally, however, not all. Beginning with verse twelve, however, we are confronted with one symbol after another for the remainder of the entire twenty-two-chapter-book.

Everything written in Revelation is true, but most is not literally true.

The fact is there are many many truths in the Bible that are not literally true.

Jesus "said" that the bread He gave His disciples at the Lordís supper was His body. Yet, Jesus Himself explains in other places that this was not literally true. He gave them literal bread, and not His literal physical flesh. What that bread represented, and symbolized, was indeed, His body--but not his physical body.

Jesus said that the words that he spoke were SPIRIT (John 6:63). Jesus Christ changes not. His words are STILL spirit and they certainly were spirit when John wrote the words of Christ regarding His unveiling or revelation. Just as we physically feed on physical bread for PHYSICAL LIFE, thus also we spiritually feed on Jesus Christís spiritual body for SPIRITUAL LIFE.

Understand this! Some think that by accepting the Scriptures as they are given (in the case of Revelation that means AS SYMBOLS), that somehow this "spiritualizes away" the teaching. What? It is the "spiritual" aspect of these symbols that IS THE REAL THING; THE REAL UNDERSTANDING! Physical things "pass away" whereas spiritual things are eternal! The very FACT that this book is written in "symbols" is proof positive that the understanding of them is SPIRITUAL and not physical or literal.

Symbols, metaphors, and parables ARE NEVER LITERALLY TRUE! But they powerfully demonstrate SPIRITUAL TRUTHS!


Hope this helps.

mercy, peace, and love

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