August 11, 2010
Building Strong Friendships in Christ
Expecting Jesus Today
“For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night.”
1 Thessalonians 5:2, Page 1850
Thieves often try to come when you least expect it. They do not want you to get ready for them, and often look for unlocked and unattended valuables. Jesus taught His disciples to be ready for the coming of the Son of Man, because He would come in an hour they do not expect (Luke 12:39-40, page 1625). Throughout the New Testament, God emphasizes the need to live ready to meet the Savior.
In 1 Thessalonians 5:2, Paul reminds the Thessalonians that they already know about the “day of the Lord.” The Old Testament prophets used this term “day of the Lord” to describe a period of time when Jesus would come to earth. In Acts 2:16-21, page 1701, Peter was preaching at Pentecost. He explained and applied the prophecy of Joel to the supernatural events taking place in Jerusalem after Jesus had ascended to heaven. During “the last days,” a series of events will precede the coming of the “great and glorious day of the Lord” (Acts 2:20, page 1701).
Paul emphasizes that Jesus will come suddenly and unexpectedly. After focusing upon the details of the order of resurrection at the end of 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, Paul now focuses upon the manner of the coming of Christ. Because no one can predict the time of His coming, everyone should live expecting it at any moment. The Rapture will come like a thief in the night. So often today we hear about some preacher, prophet, or teacher setting the exact date that Jesus will come. Be sure to mark down that person as untrustworthy because they ignore the Bible, the Word of God. Sure, they may claim some angel told them new revelation from God, but do not believe them. God wrote that we will not know when to expect the coming of Jesus, and it will be sudden. He will appear when no one expects Him. He intends that we live now as if He were coming right now.
So, we learn some more about building strong friendships in Christ.
● Strong bonds of friendship form when we expect Jesus to come at any moment.
● Strong bonds of friendship grow when we encourage each other to live today as if it were our last day on earth. Who would you share the Gospel with today if you knew the tribulation starts later today? Who would you repair the friendship with if you knew you were meeting Christ in the air later this hour?
● We harm our bonds of friendship when we do not live today as if Christ were coming right now.
Application for Today
Today, I want to live as if Jesus were coming right now. I want to expect Him today, and live with friends and neighbors all day as if it were my last day on earth. Are you expecting Jesus to come today?