Reason for Joy

“We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed – in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed” 1 Corinthians 15:51-52

For two thousand years Christians have looked forward to this great and glorious day by meeting for worship on the first day of the week. This is the day of the week that Jesus rose from the dead. We worship the Lord Jesus on the first day because we look forward to that day when we will see Jesus face to face in resurrected bodies.

The Law called for a day of rest and worship on the last day of the week but because of Christ Jesus’ substituttionary death on our behalf we are free from the requirements of the Law and the penalty for sin. We now look forward to experiencing all that it means when we are called home to be with the Lord.

This past year has been a trying one for the world. People who do not know or understand God’s word grope around for solutions to the world’s problems but they do not inquire of the Lord through prayer and reading His word. The answers are there but as long as they are rejected and men place higher value on their own wisdom they will remain in darkness and never find the right answers.

Anyone who will choose to turn from sin and put their trust in the Lord Jesus Christ will receive His forgiveness and be among those mentioned in the passage above. The New Year looks rather bleak for the world but the Bible forewarns us who believe God’s word that this is what we can expect. As tragic as this future is, understanding what God has said about future events will bring comfort, peace and joy to anyone who will trust Jesus.

He promises that “the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out” and He gives the reason. “This is the will of Him who sent me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day (John 6:37, 40). Please note the emboldened words: “everyone” who sees and believes has everlasting life and it is Jesus Himself who will raise up all those who have believed – at the appointed time.

Now, this is surely reason for us to look forward to the coming year with hope, joy and expectation. The world is enshrouded in the darkness of ignorance but we who have trusted and come to know the risen Jesus live in the light. “You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord, walk as children of light” (Ephesians 5:8).

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