1Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you. 2For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3While people are saying, "There is peace and security," then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. 4But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief. 5For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. 6So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. 7For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night. 8But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. 9For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. 11Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.Hmm... A closer reading of this chapter seems to say less to me about what the coming of the Lord will be and more about how we should live as Christians.
Paul reminds his readers of what the coming of the Lord will be:
For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.But he goes to tell his readers that they are not night dwellers to be surprised by a thief, they are people of the day. They are the Children of the light.
And what are Children of the light? They are awake and sober, they are watchful, they are people who put on the breastplate of faith and love, the helmet of the hope of salvation, they are a people destined to obtain salvation through Christ! That is who they are so now all they need to do is encourage each other and build each other up as they await the return of the Lord.
I had to ask myself, what does it mean to put on a breastplate and a helmet? When I went to the e-sword commentaries, they told me they are a sign of battle. So Christians must be prepared for battle. And what is our protection? Our armour is faith, love and hope of salvation. JFB told me that:
The helmet and breastplate defend the two vital parts, the head and the heart respectively. “With head and heart right, the whole man is right” [Edmunds]. The head needs to be kept from error, the heart from sin.So then, let me protect ourselves with faith, love and the hope of salvation. Let me be alert and be ready for the Lord's return. He is coming, I can be ready, and in the meantime I can encourage my fellow believers and I can build up his church. This is what I am called to in this passage. So let me walk as a Child of the light. :)