I THESSALONIANS 5:6-10: “Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him.” NKJV
OBSERVATION: It is time to watch and be sober! The word translated sober from the original Greek in this verse means to be calm and collected. This is a call to all believers as we navigate these uncertain times of moral and social decline. We see the world moving further and further away from the truth. It can be unsettling but Paul reminds us,
“But let us who are of the day be sober…”
How can we be calm and collected when the world as we know it is racing to the edge of a cliff? What will become of our future, of our children’s future? Do we run and hide from the onslaught of ungodliness we see raging before us? Do we clothe ourselves in white and go to the mountaintop to await the rapture? What do we do?
“But let us who are of the day be sober…”
Paul gives us insight into how we can be calm and collected in this present age. He writes to the young church in Thessalonica with these words of exhortation.
- “But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you, yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief. You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness.” I Thessalonians 5:1-5 NKJV
Jesus called the days we are living in the “last days.” He said that the last days would be like the days of Noah. I think this is very insightful. There were three things taking place in the days of Noah.
- God was calling Noah and his family to a time of readiness and preparation for His coming judgment.
- God was strengthening Noah to complete the call He had given him – building the Ark and gathering the supplies and animals before the flood.
- The world was continuing as usual, no doubt mocking Noah, and crying “Peace and safety!”
We are in the same place today! God is calling us to be alert to His coming judgment upon the world. He is warning us that the world will continue as usual crying “Peace and safety,” even as the day approaches. And, God is calling us to fulfill the calling He has given us until that final day. For as in the days of Noah, Noah and his family were lifted from the judgment. Even so, we as believers will be lifted from the day of God’s wrath through the rapture of the Church!
So how are we to occupy our time until Christ returns? Paul gives us these instructions
- “Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night…”
We are to watch and live soberly. This means that we are to walk in the light, knowing the times we are living in, and undergirded by His peace that passes all human understanding.
- “But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation.”
We are to put on the breastplate of faith and love and as a helmet the hope of salvation. This means that we are to be engaged in the Father’s business, proclaiming the Gospel, as if this world would continue for another 1000 years. And, all the while protecting our souls with the assurance of His promised return and redemption of all things.
- “For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him.”
We are to walk in the assurance that we have not been appointed unto wrath but unto salvation. This blessed hope allows us to live boldly and confidently in this fallen and broken world.
The believer who anchors their hope in the Word of God is not taken by surprise at the day we see approaching. We are not dismayed. We do not hide from the challenges we face or the persecution we may have to suffer for proclaiming the truth of the cross of Jesus Christ. We live in the light, we serve in the light, and we look for the glorious light of His appearing. We are not disconnected from this word but are always working to bring the light of Christ to all and in every aspect of our life in this present age.
While we know the end of the story we do not allow this knowledge to slow us down. We do not throw up our hands in disgust and despair. We walk in the power of the Holy Spirit, enduring the cross, as our Lord Jesus Christ endured His, knowing the joy that awaits us!
Lord, help me to walk in the light of Your salvation! Grant me the grace to keep my hand to the plow, proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ, until I hear the voice of the Archangel and the sounding of the Trumpet!
- “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words.” I Thessalonians 4:16-18 NKJV
In Jesus’ Name!