The Timing Of Christ’s Second Coming [2]

Wednesday 6th November 2019 Prayer Devotion

Scripture Reading:- 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

Topic:- The Timing Of Christ’s Second Coming [2]

Text:- Luke 21:7

1. Since Christ’s return will come as a surprise, Paul warns that those who are not following Christ are in danger of being caught unaware. People may become so acclimatized to the status quo that they forget that Jesus will return to judge the living and the dead. See 2 Peter 3:4.
2. Paul pictures someone who observes, “There is peace and security,” and thus assumes the signs for Jesus’ return and final judgment are still far off. Such a person fails to be prepared for Christ’s appearance. Indeed, it may be at just such a moment that “sudden destruction” brings the final judgment. Following an OT metaphor for destruction. See Isaiah 26:17; Jeremiah 4:31; 6:24; Micah 4:9-10; On the “Day of the Lord,” Isaiah 13:8,
3. Paul draws analogies to the labor pains of pregnancy, which can be agonizing and sudden. Labor pains also appear in various other eschatological metaphors from Jesus and Paul. See Matthew 24:8; Mark 13:8; John 16:21; Romans 8:22.
4. Here the emphasis, as in the OT, remains merely on the pain itself, without reference to the joy of the birth. No one will be able to flee from the sudden judgment Christ brings. See Romans 2:3.
5. In contrast to the people mentioned in 1 Thessalonians 5:3, the Thessalonian believers “are not in darkness” since they are followers of Jesus, seeking to walk according to his teaching. They already know to be prepared for Jesus’ return. The contrast makes it likely that Paul was speaking in 1 Thessalonians 5:3 about those who do not know Christ. Both “darkness” and “night” in these verses refer to those who have not yet experienced the illumination of the Gospel’s shining in their souls. In contrast, the “children of the light/day” are those who now see clearly enough to follow Jesus.
6. This darkness/light metaphor provides Paul with multiple applications, especially in combination with Jesus’ thief metaphor.
7. Since thieves steal primarily at night. Those who are children of the day/light will not be surprised by the thief. See 1 Thessalonians 5:2.
8. Their lives lived in faith, hope, and love show that they have obtained salvation in Christ as they live out their sanctification by walking in his light-filled ways. See 1 Thessalonians 5:8-9.
9. In contrast, those who remain in spiritual darkness will be surprised with sudden destruction at Christ’s return.See 1 Thessalonians 5:3.
10. In verse 5 Paul and his colleagues shift subtly from talking about “you” to speaking about “us.” They include themselves alongside the Thessalonian believers as children of light, increasing the sense of fellowship with one another.
11. Paul now introduces two additional related metaphors. When he says, “Let us not sleep,” he certainly does not mean it literally. Sleep connotes a passive, callous disregard for the need to be prepared. Drunkenness further suggests such irresponsibility.
12. Paul elsewhere commends physical sobriety and avoidance of drunkenness, but here the reference is metaphorical In context, sleep and drunkenness make one illprepared to encounter the surprise of a “thief” during the night. See Galatians 5:2; Ephesians 5:18; 1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7; 1 Corinthians 15:34.
13. Connecting these metaphors to the preceding discussion (1 Thess. 5:4–5) of darkness and light, Paul observes that those who sleep and those who get drunk both inhabit the space of night and darkness. In contrast, the children of light will be found awake and sober and thus prepared for Christ’s return . Thus the directives to “keep awake” and “be sober” refer to being watchful and ready for Christ’s appearing. See John 12:35-36; Ephesians 5:8-14.
14. Some have understood the wakefulness of the children of light here to relate to cognition, implying that such “children” have studied the Scriptures and thus know the signs well enough to predict Christ’s return. However, these images do not work in that way. The ongoing sobriety and wakefulness of the children of light has to do with how they conduct themselves as those living in the day. Paul will indicate specifically what such sobriety involves: faith, love, and hope. See 1 Thessalonians 5:8.
15. The children of light will be found awake and sober and thus prepared for Christ’s return.

Prayer Point:- Oh Lord God, help me to get prepared for Your second coming, never allowed me to miss the day, in the name of Jesus Christ.

Happy Mid-Week!

Pastor Timothy Ogundele-Jesu

Pastor Timothy Ogundele-Jesu

Pastor Tim Ogundele_Jesu is a Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and an apostle by the grace of God. He has been used by God prominently in the area of salvation, healing, blessing, and especially deliverance.

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