Summary: One of Satan’s greatest lies is that men have plenty of time to get ready before Jesus comes again.
Series: Lies Satan Tells
YOU HAVE PLENTY OF TIME TO GET YOUR LIFE READY
As a child I loved to play hide and seek. I loved it no matter if I was the one hiding who was trying not to get caught, or if I was the one seeking who was trying to catch the unexpecting. Although I haven’t played in a while, I remember the seeker, or "it" as we always called him would close his eyes and count to 100 so that all the others could hide. Now sometimes the seeker would cheat a little bit as he would peep around and then you could hear him count, "One, two, three, fourteen fifteen, sixty one and so on." Then you would hear him scream out, Ready or not here I come."
Four things were always certain:
1- He was surely coming
2- He was coming when he got ready
3- He was coming whether you were ready or not
4- If you were not ready, then you would pay the consequences
Little did I realize as a child how much this fun game paralleled the the second coming of Jesus Christ. This Paul exhorted us the church of Thessalonica and us today about the importance of being ready.
I. THE NECESSITY OF WALKING IN READINESS (5:1-5)
A. Certain Return of Jesus Christ
(5:1-2a) But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. 2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh..."
The Second Coming of Jesus Christ is one of the most repeated teachings in all of Scripture
Paul was well aware of this and he explained his readers should be perfectedly aware that Jesus was coming again. As a matter of fact, he told them that he shouldn’t even have to tell them again. It should be obvious. It is kind of like the story of a tourist driving through West Texas who stopped at a gas station and observed a piece of rope dangling from a sign labeled "Weather Forecaster." "How can you possibly tell the weather with a piece of rope?" the tourist wanted to know. "It’s simple, sonny," was the droll answer. "When the rope swings back and forth, it’s windy, when it gets wet, it’s raining, when it’s frozen stiff, it’s snowing, and when it’s gone... tornado!"
There are simply some things that should be obvious without even asking. The imminent return of Jesus Christ is one of those things.
B. Uncertain Timing of His Return
(5:2b) "...as a thief in the night."
The question is not "if Jesus will return?" but "when will he return?" Paul answered this question by basically saying, "No one knows." He explained this by describing the time of Jesus return as a thief in the night. Just as a thief plans his entry at an uncertain time when least expected, so will be the coming of the Son of God. Jesus Himself said in (Matt. 24:35) "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only." And later He said in (Matt 24:44) Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not expect Him."
C. Certain Judgement upon those not Ready
(5:3-5) For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. 4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. 5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
Paul refers to the Second Coming of Christ as the "Day of the Lord." Throughout scripture the "Day of the Lord" was the designation of that latter time in history when God would pour out His wrath on the ungodly. When the Lord Jesus Christ comes to rapture His people, then soon after our Lord will begin to pour out His judgements upon then earth in a time which we refer to as the Great Tribulation.
The tragedy of this day is that so many will be unprepared. And not only will they be unprepared they will actually be deceived and actively deceiving others as they cry out "Peace and safety" while thinking there is no danger at all when in fact destruction is immediately upon them.
II. THE CONDITIONS OF WALKING IN READINESS (5:6-8)
A. We must live daily with an Attitude of Watchfulness
(5:6-7) Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. 7 For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.