Psalm 24:7, The Parousia, part II of III

Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.

//Yesterday, I explained that in Paul’s understanding, the parousia didn’t mean flying up to heaven forever. It meant meeting and greeting Jesus in the air, welcoming him down to earth.

Paul, when he speaks of meeting Jesus in the air, is using the language and metaphors of a royal visit. Backing up one verse from yesterday’s topic, we read this:

For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: –1 Thessalonians 4:16

Here, Jesus descends with the sound of a trumpet, just as would happen with the return of a king to his city. The trumpet is blown to alert the watchman on the wall that the king was returning. The cry goes up to “lift up your gates so that the glorious king may come in” (see today’s verse from the Psalms).

The watchman, after identifying the visitor, would open the gates to allow the welcoming party out to greet the king. This is precisely what Paul describes with his parousia.

We’ll wrap up tomorrow by examining whether this understanding of the parousia meets the description given in Revelation.

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