The Thief in the Night
The Scriptures foretold of a day when the Messiah, a saviour, would be sent from heaven to save from sin all those who would believe in Him. Supernatural detail was recorded in Biblical Scripture, with over 100 prophecies foretelling how this would occur. Despite this foresight, when the appointed time arrived most people rejected Him or didn’t understand who He was. The manifest author of life was rejected by the same creation he came to restore. Now, with Christ’s return and the establishment of the Kingdom of God quickly approaching, understanding the times in which we live is therefore of paramount importance.
“I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come.”Isaiah 46:10
During the time when Jesus walked the Earth, He often taught using parables that used relatable situations to illustrate spiritual realities. These parables would typically conceal knowledge from those with an unreceptive heart while unlocking a mystery to others. In like manner, He used a parable to foretell His return to Earth as a thief in the night, which would be unexpected by most but foreseeable by those who are awake and watching.
“Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes.”Luke 12:37 (ESV)
These accounts were recorded in Scripture to serve as a warning to those who lived in the generation of His return, which will catch many off guard who are spiritually asleep. But He said that those who were awake would be watching, waiting, and expecting His return as the sequence of foretold events continued towards their fulfilment.
“But you, brothers, are not in darkness, that the Day should overtake you like a thief. You are all the sons of light and the sons of the day. We are not of the night, or of darkness.”1 Thessalonians 5:4-5
He also explained that He would be returning as a master to reward those who had served Him, and as a thief bringing sudden destruction upon those who thought they were safe in their own ways. This cautionary parable highlights how important it is that we are intentional about understanding and applying God’s Word as His return approaches.
“This also, knowing the time, that it is already time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we believed.”Romans 13:11
For those who are awake and understand the events that are yet to transpire, it is their responsibility and privilege to warn others of the inevitable events leading to the Kingdom of God, a time when our fates will be revealed.
“Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.”1 Corinthians 15:34