This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life.
It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?”
God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are.
We know who He is, and we know who we are: Father and children.
And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance!
We go through exactly what Christ goes through.
If we go through the hard times with Him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with Him!
That’s why I don’t think there’s any comparison between the present hard times and the coming good times.
The created world itself can hardly wait for what’s coming next.
Everything in creation is being more or less held back.
God reins it in until both creation and all the creatures are ready and can be released at the same moment
into the glorious times ahead.
Meanwhile, the joyful anticipation deepens. (Romans 8:15-21)
I will send great troubles upon them—all the things they feared, for when I called them, they refused to answer,
and when I spoke to them, they would not hear. Instead, they did wrong before my eyes and chose what they knew I despised.
Hear the words of God, all you who fear Him, and tremble at His words:
Your brethren hate you and cast you out for being loyal to My name.
“Glory to God,” they scoff. “Be happy in the Lord!” But they shall be put to shame. (Isaiah 66:4-5)
Who has performed these deeds and accomplished this purpose?
Who calls each generation into being from the first on down?
It is I, the Eternal One your God.
I am the first.
And to the very last, I am the One. (Isaiah 41:4)
But for those in covenant with God, there’s nothing to fear. This is The Good News; in Christ’s ascension and Satan’s defeat, God’s covenant people have God’s answers to their prayers. Christ’s Kingdom cannot be overturned and His Word endures forever; unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain that build. The will of God is not founded upon the caprices of man but fulfilled in the obedience of the Son of God who lay down his life as the Son of Man and then arose with healing in his wings for whosoever will believe and receive His ever-lasting resurrection life. This is His story not just man’s history; it is the outworking of God’s plan to redeem and restore His scattered people. It was God who sent His disobedient covenant partners into exile; it will be God who brings them back home.
Therefore, brothers, just as you learned from us how you had to live in order to please God,
and just as you are living this way now, we ask you — indeed, united with the Lord Yeshua, we urge you —
to keep doing so more and more.
For you know what instructions we gave you on the authority of the Lord Yeshua.
What God wants is that you be holy, that you keep away from sexual immorality,
that each of you know how to manage his sexual impulses in a holy and honorable manner, without giving in to lustful desires, like the pagans who don’t know God.
No one should wrong his brother in this matter or take advantage of him, because the Lord punishes all who do such things — as we have explained to you before at length. For God did not call us to live an unclean life but a holy one.
Therefore, whoever rejects this teaching is rejecting not a man but God, indeed, the One who gives you the Ruach HaKodesh, which is His.
Concerning love for the brothers we do not need to write you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other; and you do love all the brothers throughout Macedonia. But we urge you, brothers, to do it even more.
Also, make it your ambition to live quietly, to mind your own business and to earn your living by your own efforts —
just as we told you. Then your daily life will gain the respect of outsiders, and you will not be dependent on anyone.
Now, brothers, we want you to know the truth about those who have died;
otherwise, you might become sad the way other people do who have nothing to hope for.
For since we believe that Yeshua died and rose again, we also believe that in the same way God, through Yeshua,
will take with Him those who have died.
When we say this, we base it on the Lord’s own word:
we who remain alive when the Lord comes will certainly not take precedence over those who have died.
For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven with a rousing cry, with a call from one of the ruling angels,
and with God’s shofar;
those who died united with the Messiah will be the first to rise;
then we who are left still alive will be caught up with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air;
and thus we will always be with the Lord.
So encourage each other with these words.
(1 Thessalonians 4)
And those who are wise—the people of God—shall shine as brightly as the sun’s brilliance,
and those who turn many to righteousness will glitter like stars forever. (Daniel 12:3)
And let us not get tired of doing what is right,
for after a while we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t get discouraged and give up. (Galatians 6:9)