As believers we have the hope of salvation.
1 Thessalonians 5 “8 But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. 9 For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Salvation is to be saved from the coming wrath of God.
This wrath is coming upon all who sin.
Romans 1:18 “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness,”
This wrath will come upon those under law (Jew) and also those not under the law (Gentile).
Romans 2 “there will be wrath and anger…12 All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law.”
Nobody can be saved by their own good works.
Romans 3:20 “no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin.”
The law was not given to save anyone but to show the world that nobody is righteous. The Jews were guilty under the law and Gentiles guilty outside the law.
This is why Jesus Christ died for our sins to forgive us.
He rose from the dead to give us His Righteousness.
Romans 4 “24 but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. 25 He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.”
Everyone who believes in Jesus is forgiven and righteous by grace and not by works!
If we believe in Jesus then we will be saved from the wrath that is coming.
Romans 5 “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,…. 9 Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! “
A believer is saved from death.
James 5 “Whoever turns a sinner from the error of their way will save them from death and cover over a multitude of sins.”
When Jesus comes again, then He will save all the believers by raising the dead and rapturing those who are alive. But unbelievers will perish in death.
1 Thessalonians 4 “13 Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. 14 For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For 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. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.”
We don’t know the day when this will happen.
But it will come at a time when the world is living in a false sense of peace, thinking that Jesus will never come and that the world will never end.
The world will falsely believe that there is no judgment.
1 Thessalonians 5 “Now, brothers and sisters, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, 2 for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3 While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.”
They will question the 2nd coming of Christ saying that nothing will ever change.
2 Peter 3 “3 Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. 4 They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.”
But God has been patient for 1000s of years because He wants people to be saved. But one day, God will see that the world is no longer interested in Jesus, and then He will bring judgment to save the believers. Christ will come to suddenly destroy the world by fire and bring a new world where righteousness dwells.
2nd Peter 3 “8 But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare. 11 Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives 12 as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. 13 But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.”
His coming will bring judgment to the unbelievers
2 Thessalonians 1 “the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. 8 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might 10 on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed.”
The believers will see Jesus and marvel in His glory and become like Him !!
The believers will not be surprised at the 2nd coming, because we will be expecting it and looking forward to His salvation.
When Jesus comes, He will bring salvation to all the believers but judgment for all unbelievers.
Hebrews 9 ” 27 Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.”
We will be saved from the destruction/wrath to come upon this world.
Salvation is to be resurrected/raptured to live in the new heaven and earth without any more pain, death, or sorrow.
Salvation is to be with Jesus forever and see Him face-face forever, the One who loves us and gave His life for us.
This is the great hope of the Gospel.