Now, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness.” (Reference: 1 Thessalonians 5: 1-5)
The historic Anabaptist believer, Abraham Picolet, shares the concern common to the historic Anabaptists of those times that believers would be found negligent in their faith. He wrote, “Make great haste to fear the Lord; for we live today, but do not know whether we shall live tomorrow. Be therefore watchful to fear the Lord; take courage; lift up the hands that hang down, and the feeble knees; and take diligent heed, for we know not when the Lord will come. Heb. 12:12; Matt. 24:42. The day of the Lord draws nigh; it comes as a thief in the night, when it is not expected. 1 Thess. 5:2. Look therefore not to men, for there are few that fear the Lord. Think how many there were when the whole world perished, and yet there were but eight who feared the Lord. Also, how many were saved when Sodom and Gomorrah perished. O think how few entered into the promised land, only Joshua and Caleb; the rest all perished because of their wickedness (even as it still goes with many on account of their wickedness), and because they would not believe God’s words, but resisted, vexed and persecuted the righteous; and if these will also not repent, they shall all likewise perish, for all those are for an example to us. Luke 13:3.” And if you consider the examples that he gives – Noah and his family, Lot and his family, and Joshua and Caleb out of all of those who were lead out of Egypt – it has been challenging to many to live a good Christian life. The writer of Thessalonians is of the perspective that his listens are good Christians and followers of God. But the historic Anabaptist believer Picolet seems to express a more pessimistic perspective. This could be based on how comparatively few “true” believers that the historic Anabaptists knew.
May you beloved be a true and faithful follower of God so that you will not be surprised by the return of Christ! Selah!
It is the second day of Holy Week – Tuesday. The theme for this day is being attentive and aware of many things – from the passage in Isaiah 49:1-7 where the writer of Isaiah recognizes his identity in God to the passage from Psalms 71:1-14 that celebrates God’s rescue of us; and the passage from I Corinthians 1:18-31 that recognizes that what may be foolishness to the world but wisdom to the believer; and the culmination in John 12:20-36 where Jesus is identified for the benefit of those with Jesus. May you beloved continue to be aware this week of Jesus’ mission in the world and the Lord’s mission in your life. Selah!