For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. 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 Thessalonians 4:15-17
We have a blessed hope concerning our future. What awaits the believer in Jesus at the end of their race? For previous generations it will certainly be a resurrection of the body. But for our generation could it be a translation of the body? Our we the generation of believers that shall not experience a physical death but a translation of the body? How wild is that!
Many scoff today at the concept of a rapture or catching away of believers. One must remember that the bible is full of supernatural interventions. Enoch was raptured, Elijah was raptured, Moses more than likely was raptured (that’s another story), Jesus was raptured after His resurrection, and Phillip was translated from one location to another in the Book of Acts. How wild is that!
The promise of a rapture of believers is truly one of the most wild promises in the Bible, I think. Yet you will find it referenced in all of the Apostle Paul’s letters except Galatians. He mentioned his own experience of being caught up to the third heaven where He received an abundance of revelations concerning God’s plan for the church. He has an awesome plan for both our present and future! And He is saving the best for last, that is the redemption of our bodies. How wild is that!