“Then the rest of us…will be caught up with them into the clouds to meet the Master.” 1Th 4:17 MSG
The Message paraphrases Christ’s return this way: “The Master Himself will give the command. Archangel thunder! God’s trumpet blast! He’ll come down from heaven and the dead in Christ will rise—they’ll go first. Then the rest of us who are still alive at the time will be caught up with them into the clouds to meet the Master…then there will be one huge family reunion…So reassure one another with these words” (vv. 16-18). The second coming of Christ will be inaugurated by the trumpet blast of the archangel. Cemeteries and seas will give up their dead. “Christ…will appear a second time…to save those who are eagerly waiting for him” (Heb 9:28 ESV). The event will be witnessed by all humanity. “Every eye shall see him” (Rev 1:7). From Adam to the baby born as the trumpet sounds, every one of us will witness the moment. But not everyone will welcome it. “Unready people all over the world…will raise a huge lament as they watch the Son of Man blazing out of heaven” (Mt 24:30 MSG). You don’t go to heaven by chance, you go by choice. And God will honor your choice. Those who acknowledge Christ as their Savior will arise to celebrate the greatest family reunion of all time. Are you going to heaven? If you’re not sure, don’t let this day end until you put your trust in Christ and accept Him as your Lord and Savior.