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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"The Great Awakening"

June 6, 2005

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The Lord Himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 1 Thessalonians 4:16

An English hunting song says that the baying hounds and the horn of the morning hunter, John Peel, bring the foxes from their hiding places, rouse people from their beds, and are loud enough to “awaken the dead.”

A trumpet to awaken the dead – is there such a thing? Yes says Saint Paul. He writes, concerning the order of Christ’s action on the Last Day: "The Lord Himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first." Again, when referring to the glorified resurrection bodies, he states “The trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed” (1 Corinthians 15:52).

We can’t imagine what that will be like – what kind of trumpet sound will be heard around the world, how those who have died so long ago and with their bodies now turned to dust can hear that call. And what is the nature of the changed, glorified, and imperishable bodies? But we can catch a glimpse of that future scene – how a tree or shrub, barren in the winter, blooms in spring; how a caterpillar becomes a beautiful butterfly; how an eagle or other bird molts and then renews itself; how a patient, near death’s door, overcomes his ailments and again achieves glowing health. If such changes occur in our natural world, should it be impossible for God to do the greater miracle of awakening the dead to a new life?

In a sense we are already raised from the dead – from being spiritually dead in trespasses and sins. Jesus Christ, having died for our sins and conquered death, rose again from the dead. Believing in Him and baptized into His name, we live in Him and have even now a foretaste of eternal life to come.

Yes, Christ’s trumpet call will be heard! Are we ready for it?

PRAYER: O Holy Spirit, deepen my faith in Jesus’ promise to come again and raise me from the dead. Amen.

(Devotions from "With Jesus Every Day" copyright 1997, CPH. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be printed, reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission of Concordia Publishing House. Permission is granted for one-time emailing of this link to a friend. For information on other devotional material, please contact CPH at 800-325-3040 or visit CPH at

Today's Bible Readings: Psalms 109-110,138    John 16

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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