April 5th, 2007
Thieves rely on surprise to maximise their returns. According to Paul, it’s going to be like that with the day of the Lord. It will come unexpectedly like a thief in the night, and very many people are going to be completely unprepared for it. For them it will be a major disaster. But followers of Jesus should be aware that the day of the Lord might come at any time, and they should remain constantly on the alert. As Paul said in today’s reading, “We should be sober, wearing faith and love as our armour and the hope of salvation as our helmet.”
Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians — Chapter 5
5:1 You do not need to have anything written to you about the times and the seasons, friends. 5:2 You are well aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 5:3 When people are saying, “Peace and safety,” sudden destruction will overtake them, like the birth pains of a pregnant woman, and there is no way that they will escape. 5:4 But friends, you are not in darkness, so the day will not catch you unawares like a thief. 5:5 You are all children of light, and of the day. We do not belong to the night, or to darkness. 5:6 So we should not sleep as others do. We should stay alert and sober. 5:7 People who sleep, sleep at night time, and people who are drunk are drunk at night time. 5:8 But we belong to the day, so we should be sober, wearing faith and love as our armour and the hope of salvation as our helmet.
5:9 God did not doom us to wrath. His plan was for us to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 5:10 who died for us, so that we can live together with him, whether we are alive or dead when he returns. 5:11 Encourage and strengthen each other, as you are already doing. 5:12 Friends, please take notice of those who work amongst you and lead you in the Lord and teach you. 5:13 Show them your greatest respect in love on account of their work. Be at peace amongst yourselves.
5:14 We urge you, friends, to warn those people who are lazy, encourage the fainthearted, support the weak, be patient towards all. 5:15 See that no one returns evil for evil to anyone. Always try to do what is best for each other and for everyone. 5:16 Rejoice always. 5:17 Pray without ceasing. 5:18 Be grateful for everything, because this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 5:19 Do not quench the Spirit. 5:20 Do not despise prophecies. 5:21 Test everything, and keep the things which are good. 5:22 Stay away from every form of evil.
5:23 May the God of peace himself make you completely holy. May your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept innocent in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ. 5:24 The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do this. 5:25 Friends, pray for us. 5:26 Greet all the believers with a holy kiss. 5:27 I ask you in the name of the Lord to arrange for this letter to be read to all the believers. 5:28 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
Entry Filed under: Hope