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1 Thessalonians

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©Kris Gerbrandt

Chapter 5:5-11 (ESV)

Posted on May 02, 2024  - By Chris LaBelle  

Chapter 5:5-11 (ESV) - For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

Question to consider: What does Paul mean that we live with Christ whether awake or asleep? 

In today’s passage, Paul addressed what the life of a Christian should look like while we anticipate the Lord’s return. The Thessalonians experienced ongoing tribulation with joy and showed Christ-like love to those in the church, but they were so focused on Christ’s return that some were in danger of falling back into sin or being unwise in how they used their time.

Since Christ could come back at any moment without warning, Paul was saying that they should be sober minded and alert to the fact that there was work to be done. We have been given the assurance that someone who is absent from the body is present with the Lord (2 Corinthians 5:8). However, Paul also points out that even while we are still awake in the body, we live with Christ.

Since his next statement is to encourage one another and build one another up, I believe that our life with Christ here on earth is a reference to His church. When we are gathered as a church, we are in Christ’s kingdom here on earth. When we leave the gathering and go into the world, we are Christ’s ambassadors living on foreign soil. So many churches seem to be weak and anemic because about 20% of the congregation does 80% of the work. If everyone in the church used their gifts and talents to serve one another like we were serving Christ Himself, I think we would look a lot more like Thessalonica.

Even if Christ returns tomorrow, we should be focused on whatever task God has in front of us today. When we take our focus off of Christ, it is really easy to get caught up in the injustices of the day and see our efforts as futile. Imagine what the world will look like in twenty years if the church focuses on encouraging one another, dedicating our families to Christ, working hard in our vocations and doing all things to the glory of God? The current culture may protest loudly against everything that God has said is good, but they are like the grass of the field. The grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of the Lord stands forever.


Dear Lord, please show us ways we can serve in Your kingdom here on earth and encourage and build one another up in love. Thank You for the hope of salvation and the assurance that we are not destined for wrath. Amen.