A Glorious & Joyful Ending, I Thessalonians 4:15-18

A Glorious & Joyful Ending, I Thessalonians 4:15-18

For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. Therefore encourage one another with these words.

I Thessalonians 4:15-18

Dear HLPC family,

I read these words this morning during my daily Bible reading.  It struck me how little attention I give to the teaching of this passage.  There is an end to our story and all stories.  For the believer in Jesus Christ, it’s a glorious and joyful ending.  It’s meant to encourage us and to fill our hearts with hope.   C.S. Lewis had it right when he wrote at the end of The Last Battle and described eternity, “All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.”

We should be encouraged by these words of Scripture. Not that we simply “check out” of day-to-day life and wait for the end, but that we persevere knowing a glorious end awaits.  We encourage each other to remain faithful. Hope always remains!

While away this past weekend, I joined in for Lord’s Day worship with HLPC through our livestream.  I was so encouraged by Clif Wilcox’s message.  I think it was very timely and very encouraging.  If you somehow missed it, you should use the “Media” link on the church web page and watch it yourself.  You’ll be helped and encouraged during these challenging times.

I hope you can join us tonight, either at HLPC or online through Facebook Live for our study, “Consider Jesus.”  We will look tonight at the Hypostatic Union.  That’s the way we understand how Jesus can have two natures, the divine and the human, and be united in one person.  Please join us at 7PM and look for an email later with a handout for those who will be joining us online.

Your Pastor,


Paul Bankson

Paul was born and raised in Birmingham, AL and graduated from Auburn University in 1986 with a degree in Business Administration. It was at Auburn that he met his wife, Connie. They were married in Ft. Lauderdale, FL and moved to Jackson, MS where he attended Reformed Theological Seminary graduating with a Master of Divinity in 1991. Upon graduation, Paul served as a Campus Minister with RUF, the campus ministry of the PCA, at Tennessee-Martin where the Banksons lived for 5 years. They moved to Macon, GA in 1996 to work with RUF at Mercer University and then Paul joined the pastoral staff at First Presbyterian Church of Macon as an Assistant Pastor in 1999. In 2004, Paul and his family moved to Warner Robins where he served as a church planter and then organizing Pastor of Houston Lake Presbyterian Church. In December 2014 Paul completed a Doctor of Ministry degree through Reformed Theological Seminary of Orlando. Paul and Connie have three sons, Andrew (23), Stephen (20), and Matthew (15). Paul enjoys grilling, camping with his family, and Auburn sports (War Eagle!).