Further Study: Dead in Christ
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“Many interpret this passage [1 Thess. 4:14] to mean that the sleeping ones will be brought with Christ from heaven; but Paul meant that as Christ was raised from the dead, so God will call the sleeping saints from their graves and take them with Him to heaven.”-Ellen G. White, The Acts of the Apostles, p. 259.

“The Thessalonians had eagerly grasped the idea that Christ was coming to change the faithful who were alive, and to take them to Himself. They had carefully guarded [...]

Thursday: Comfort One Another (1 Thess. 4:13, 17, 18)
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Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

Read 1 Thessalonians 4:13, 17, 18. What is the ultimate purpose of this passage about the second coming of Jesus?

Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

As we said earlier, the purpose of prophecy is not to satisfy our curiosity about the future but to teach us how to live today. For Paul, the order of final events has practical implications for everyday Christian living. Prophecy is valuable to the degree that it impacts the way we relate to God and to each other. [...]

Wednesday: Rising in Christ (1 Thess. 4:15, 16)
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In 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11, Paul builds on the earthly teachings of Jesus. There are more than a dozen parallels between these end-time passages and the sayings of Jesus recorded in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. But when Paul talks about the “word of the Lord” in 1 Thessalonians 4:15 (NKJV), he is referring to a saying of Jesus that did not make it into the four gospels, but that Paul preserves for us (a clear example of this same thing is seen in Acts 20:35).

Read 1 Thessalonians [...]

08: The Dead in Christ – Teaching Plan
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Key Thought : Paul corrects a number of misconceptions about the state of the dead and the second coming of Christ to the Thessalonians that can help us today.

[Teaching plan for "The Dead in Christ" August 20, 2012]

1. Have a volunteer read I Thessalonians 4:13,14.

A. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the main idea of this text is.
B. What does it mean that those who sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him? Is [...]

Tuesday: Dying and Rising (1 Thess. 4:14)
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Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

Read 1 Thessalonians 4:14. What hope does Paul offer regarding those who have died?

In verse 14 Paul offers the solution to the problem of hopeless grief. In the original language he describes the believers who have died as having “fallen asleep through Jesus.” While falling asleep is a common metaphor for death in New Testament times, the normal expression for a believer’s death is “fallen asleep in Jesus” or “in Christ.” A good example of this is the “dead in Christ” of verse 16.

Image © Lars Justinen [...]

Monday: Hopeless Grief (1 Thess. 4:13)
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Image © Krieg Barrie from GoodSalt.com

According to 1 Thessalonians 4:13, what was Paul’s purpose for writing verses 13-18? Why should this text mean so much for us today?

Why were the Thessalonian believers grieving as if they had no hope? A major factor was probably the short period that Paul was with them. We know that Paul talked about the death and resurrection of Jesus (Acts 17:3). There is also evidence that he talked about final events, even if his instruction was misunderstood. But he may not have had time [...]

Sunday: The Situation in Thessalonica
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Read 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18. List the clues in this passage that point to the false beliefs in the Thessalonian church that brought unnecessary grief to those who held them.

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Within the Judaism of Paul’s day, a variety of views regarding the end time were prevalent. One of these viewpoints, in some form, crept into the Thessalonian church. Though we’re not certain exactly what it was, it seems to have been the idea that though all of [...]

Sabbath: The Dead in Christ (1 Thess. 4:13-18)
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Read for This Week’s Study: 1 Thess. 4:13-18; Acts 17:3; 1 Cor. 15:20-23, 51-58; John 5:28, 29; Rev. 20:4-6.

Memory Text: “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 4:16).

Key Thought: Paul gives the Thessalonians (and us) a powerful hope for the future, the promise of the second coming of Christ.

In the passage for this week (1 Thess. 4:13-18) Paul is reacting to a theological misunderstanding among the [...]