The Saints Will Follow Him

A Study Outline for teachers and students.

We Shall Follow Him
We Shall Follow Him
So you’ve recently come to faith in Jesus Christ and you’ve experienced the new birth. That’s great! The following study outline is intended to clue you in on a few of the really great things that will be part of your blessed experience in Christ.
Apply yourself to this study with your Bible open, your heart open and the Holy Spirit’s guidance. Most of the supplied Bible references should be considered within their larger context so take your time. Remember, it is not how much of God’s Word you consume but rather how well you digest what you do consume. I heard one teacher say that believers who study God’s Word should be like a cow chewing the cud. Enjoy your time in the Word.

In This Life

Explanation: The Blessedness of God’s saints is initiated in this Life through the Holy Spirit

In this life God’s saints are blessed with all spiritual blessings in Christ

Ephesians 1:3-4
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him

In this life they experience God’s presence, his favor and love

John 14:23
Jesus answered him, If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him

In this life they experience joy full of glory

1 Peter 1:8
Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory

In this life they are already fellow-citizens with the saints from throughout the ages

Ephesians 2:19
So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God

In this life angels minister to them

Hebrews 1:14
Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation

In this life they are sealed while they await the day of their redemption

Ephesians 4:30
And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption

In this life they are being changed from glory to glory

2 Corinthians 3:18
And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit


At Death

Explanation: God delivers his saints through Death

Through Death they are securely kept safe through Jesus Christ 

1 Corinthians 15:55-57
O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ

They are more than conquerors

Romans 8:37-39
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord

Though they die in the Lord they are blessed

Revelation 14:13
And I heard a voice from heaven saying, Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on. Blessed indeed, says the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow them

At death they go before Jesus Christ

Philippians 1:23
I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better

The souls of His saints become altogether holy

Hebrews 12:23-24
and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, 24 and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel

At death the saints of God enter in glory

2 Corinthians 5:6-8
So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight. 8 Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord.

The bodies of those in Christ rest in peace

Isaiah 57:1-2
The righteous man perishes, and no one lays it to heart; devout men are taken away, while no one understands. For the righteous man is taken away from calamity; 2 he enters into peace; they rest in their beds who walk in their uprightness

1 Thessalonians 4:14
For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep

The body of the saint awaits redemption.

Romans 8:23-25
And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience


In the Resurrection

Explanation: The Blessedness of God’s saints will be in full bloom in the Resurrection
In the resurrection the body sown in dishonor shall be raised in glory

Philippians 3:20b-21
We await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself

1 Corinthians 15:42-44
So is it with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable. 43 It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power. 44 It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. 

The body and soul will be reunited

1 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. 16 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. 17 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. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words

1 Corinthians 15:51-54a
Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. 53 For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality

The dead in Christ will rise first

1 Thessalonians 4:16
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.

The redeemed will appear with Jesus in glory

Colossians 3:4
For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory

All of the redeemed shall appear with Jesus in glory

1 John 3:2
Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is

Psalm 17:15
As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness

They will be glorified with Messiah

Romans 8:16-18
The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. 18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us

2 Timothy 2:12a
If we endure, we will also reign with him

They will see all things clearly, even face to face

1 Corinthians 13:12
For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known

In our Lord’s presence they will experience fulness of joy

Psalm 16:11
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore

They will serve God day and night

Revelation 7:15
Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence

And they will be eternally forever with their Lord

1 Thessalonians 4:17
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

About Moe Bergeron

A Changed Heart


A change of mind or a change of heart?

Usually when someone says “I’ve changed my mind” we can take the shift as a passing matter.  It depends on context, of course, but changes of mind are common.  I might say, for instance, “I know I said I can meet for coffee at ten but I’ve changed my mind because of a deadline I’m facing . . . would tomorrow work for you, same time?”
If, on the other hand, someone says to me, “Umm, you know, I’ve had a change of heart about meeting with you over coffee . . .” well, that would catch my attention!  It might signal something much deeper—possibly a value-shift or realignment of motives in the relationship.
So, using that loose distinction, here’s my question.
When Christ began his ministry with calls for repentance, was he calling for a change of mind or a change of heart?  With one more abstract and the other more fundamental?
We can, of course, hear his call for repentance as an invitation to change our minds if we notice the underlying Greek word can be strictly translated as “a changed mind”.  Given this etymology the essence of repentance might be summarized like this: “In repentance we take up a new way of viewing things by changing how we think about God and his ways.”
Treating repentance as a change-of-heart, on the other hand, looks back to the Old Testament prophet, Ezekiel, who (in 36:26) spoke of the need for our hearts “of stone” to be changed to heart “of flesh”—that is, to move from a dead state to one of new life.
But isn’t this an artificial distinction? 
I believe it is, at least in this sense: our bond with Christ is one of both knowing and loving him.  It is only by insisting that the mind has some sort of self-guiding capacity that we can separate the two.  As Jesus made clear more than once, however, it is out of the heart that we speak and choose—with the heart treated as the affective center of the soul.  And affective in the sense that the heart is ever and always responding to outside invitations to embrace and follow various attractions.  So, as Luther understood in launching his part in the Protestant Reformation, the battle is always one of “affection versus affection”.
Jesus, we know, prayed to the Father just before he was crucified of a proper faith in which believers “know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent” (John 17:3).  While this might sound like a call to a rational affirmation of faith—of simply affirming certain things to be true of the Father and the Son—the finale of the chapter offers an affective summation of the real point: “I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known that the love with which you have loved me may be in them and I in them” (John 17:26).
Knowing God
A real knowledge of God, he is saying, is only engaged as we enter into the heart of the Father-Son relationship—by joining “the love with which you have loved me”.  That means, in turn, that for any of us who have a religion that stops short of a whole-hearted response to God as expressed in his love for us in Christ, there is still room for repentance.   And I, for one, am still repenting as I learn how deeply my self-absorbed rationalizations allow me to maintain an abstract and disaffected view of Christ.  It’s time to open my heart to his attractiveness with a full devotion.
Any thoughts or comments from others on this distinction?
You are invited to comment on Ron’s article at Cor Deo
~ Ron
Dr. Ron Frost
Ron served on faculty for more than 20 years at Multnomah Bible College and Biblical Seminary. At the seminary, from 1995-2007, he was professor of historical theology and ethics. He earned his PhD at King’s College of the University of London. His research featured Richard Sibbes (1577-1635). He now teaches internationally while serving as a pastoral care consultant to missionaries with Barnabas International. Ron authored Discover the Power of the Bible and writes on [See “Resources”].
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