One thing that always encourages me is the consistency of the scriptures. What you find in the New Testament is frequently found in the Old Testament as well. Multiple authors wrote over thousands of years, yet they had the same message. For instance, in his very first epistle, 1 Thessalonians, the Apostle Paul laid out Jesus’ triumphant return and our gathering together to Him in these famous words: “For the Lord, Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus, we shall always be with the Lord (1 Thess 4:16-17).” And thus, we shall always be with the Lord – I love that part.
But did you know that the Psalm writers, the Sons of Korah, wrote about this event a thousand years before Paul? They did – in Psalm 47. Listen to how similar this sounds to Paul’s account, “God has gone up with a shout, The Lord with the sound of a trumpet. (Psalm 47:5)” The Lord is there, the shout is there, and the trumpet is there. The only difference is this is the second half of the event. Jesus and the saints are going UP. Paul gave us the first half of the event when the Lord was coming DOWN with His angels.
Some might ask, “How did Paul know we would be gathered together into the clouds?” Well, certainly the Holy Spirit might have told him, but look at what else Psalm 47 has to say: “He will subdue the peoples under us, and the nations under our feet. (Psalm 47:3).” How is Jesus subduing nations under our feet unless we are physically in the air? Just like Noah’s Ark, we will be lifted above the Wrath of God being poured out upon the earth beneath us.
“Oh, clap your hands, all you peoples! Shout to God with the voice of triumph! For the Lord Most High is awesome; He is a great King over all the earth (Psalm 47:1-2).” And this is the takeaway. No matter how grim things seem, in the midst of the Ukraine war, rumors of nuclear war, Covid pestilence, Turkish earthquakes, and economic collapse, our God reigns. And our blessed hope is that He is coming for us, and He is coming soon. Nothing can be taken away from us that He will not restore.