Today’s readings.. (Nehemiah 5,6), (Joel 1), (2 Thessalonians 1,2)
In the sight of God we all have the opportunity to be his children. Paul, in completing his first letter to the Thessalonians makes the point, “you are not in darkness brothers … for you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night …” “ [ch. 5 v.4,5] There is a simple but profound lesson here. It is essential for our spiritual eyes to be wide open (recall Ephesians 1 v.18) – day after day – week after week – month after month – year after year!
Paul presses the point, “We are not of the night, nor of the darkness.” There can be no spiritual night-time for genuine committed believers. He continues, “So then let us not sleep as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night ,,,,, we belong to the day, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation” [v.6-8]”
We shudder at Paul’s words in the next verse, “For God has not destined us to wrath but to obtain salvation …” But let us not spend any time thinking of the destiny of those who are not of the day. There is no middle path, only broad and narrow ones! In a way the seemingly never ending turmoil of the nations around Israel at the moment can be seen as a foretaste of the wrath for those who have no knowledge at all of the one true God..
As those who have on – or should have on – “the breastplate of faith” we have a tremendous example to follow as we read more of the dedication of Nehemiah (ch. 5 & 6) as he pushed to one side all those who tried to hinder and stop the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem. Let us all work at building up the walls of our faith – and create secure “gates” that only allow in that which is good and profitable.