“Now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light”
When describing inward spiritual realities and their resulting outward conduct, the Bible speaks of people being dead or alive, active or sleeping. The unregenerate are said to be “dead in sins and trespasses” while those who have received Christ for salvation and have experienced the new birth are said to be alive (Ephesians 2:1, 5-6). On outward inspection, a sleeping person and a dead person often look indistinguishable. It is only under closer examination that we are able to discern the sleeping from the dead. The New Testament would have all Christians everywhere to conduct themselves consistently as people who are spiritually alive and awake. Too often Christians lapse into complacency and self reliance. Before they know it they are inactive in terms of real, kingdom building work. On outward inspection these sleeping Christians look no different than their spiritually dead counterparts. On one occasion the Lord saw a large crowd gathered to receive ministry. Matthew tells us that Jesus “was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd. Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest” (Matthew 9:36-38 cf John 4:35). People who are primed to receive the Gospel are like a crop ready to be harvested. It is our Lord’s desire that His ambassadors go out into the “field” preaching the Gospel in order that there might be a tremendous “harvest” of saved souls. Those who do what they can to bring in this great harvest are considered good and faithful. On the other hand, “he that sleepeth in harvest is a son that causeth shame” (Proverbs 10:5). Christians ought to be awake and functioning, not sleeping like Jonah who was oblivious to the need of others (Jonah 1:5-6). Let us also be found awake in our eager anticipation of the Lord’s return (Matthew 25:1-13; Mark 13:32-37). “Let us not sleep, as do others” wrote the great apostle Paul, “but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation” (1 Thessalonians 5:6-8). Let us labor in the Lord while we can (John 9:4), knowing that “there remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God” (Hebrews 4:9 cf 2 Thessalonians 1:7). Maranatha! Our Lord, come!
God bless you dear saints,