The Christian life should be one of great joy for many reasons. First of all, the knowledge that one has been forgiven of every sin by God, and that no appeasement need be made, gives a joyful release from the fear of coming judgment. Then there is the deep gratitude that Christ would suffer the eternal judgment we deserved in order to have us in His presence in heaven forever. There is also the joy of love awakened by the Holy Spirit in response to His great love—a love that is beyond anything earth can offer. This love gives the believer a consuming desire to please the One who said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John:14:15).
Perhaps the greatest joy of all is the discovery that we can indeed please the One who loves us so—that our hearts have been changed so that we now hate sin and love righteousness. Words fail to express the joy that comes from knowing that Christ himself is living within us and empowers us by His Holy Spirit to live a new life that honors and glorifies Him. Instead of fearing to meet God, we long to be in the presence of our heavenly Father when at last, as part of the church, which is Christ’s bride, we will see the Bridegroom and be united with Him forever.
To be caught up at the Rapture to meet Christ in the air and to be taken to heaven without experiencing physical death is the great hope of the Christian. By comparison, any earthly ambition fades into insignificance. Paul reminded the Philippians, “Our conversation [citizenship] is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ” (3:20). To Titus he wrote: “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ” (2:13). Hebrews:9:28 declares, “Unto them that look for him [Christ] shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.