Staying Awake

Last night I had trouble falling asleep again. Grace has been sick for the past few days. I am ‘wired and tired’ from being on high alert watching her monitors and tending to her respiratory needs while also trying to maintain my regular routine. It takes a toll on my mind, body, and spirit. I needed to get some rest, but alas, it was not to be.

Getting quality, regular, and enough sleep is important. Lack of good REM sleep can even cause depression.

Are you woke or awake ? S2 E13 Blue Skies and Green Pastures with Paula Adams

A lot of people think they are woke or awake but are really still zombies . What’s the difference? How can you wake up before it’s too late ? — Send in a voice message:—S2-E13-e1f84r7

But Jesus tells us to stay awake. What does he mean? Are you awake?

A little background

When Satan tempted Eve to eat the forbidden fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and she decided to eat it because she thought it could make her ‘wise like God’, she actually caused the world to become foolish and blind, not wise and understanding. Yes, thanks to Eve, humans know good and evil, but unfortunately due to this first act of disobedience, all mankind was altered. And now all people are controlled by our selfish desires, not our good intentions, until God changes us.

Thus, sin makes us like zombies, walking around like living people, but dead inside. Acting like we are awake, but actually living in an illusion. We are like animals living by instinct. We think we are in control, but we are slaves to sin. Only by ‘waking up’ can we truly be wise.

What does the Bible say about being awake?

The apostle Paul speaking to the Gentile believers of the church at Thessalonica says:

About the times and the seasons: Brothers, you do not need anything to be written to you. For you yourselves know very well that the Day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night. When they say, “Peace and security,” then sudden destruction comes on them, like labor pains come on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you, brothers, are not in the dark, for this day to overtake you like a thief. For you are all sons of light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or the darkness. So then, we must not sleep, like the rest, but we must stay awake and be serious. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, we must be serious and put the armor of faith and love on our chests, and put on a helmet of the hope of salvation. For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep, we will live together with Him. 11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up as you are already doing.

1 Thessalonians 5

First he mentions that people will be saying ‘Peace and security!’. In other words, life will be going along as normal, maybe even extra good for some people when Jesus returns. The modern day prophets known as politicians and media will not warn the world that God’s wrath is coming, because they do not believe.

Then he compares being asleep to being drunk and being awake to being serious, having faith, love and hope. In verse 9, he uses awake or asleep in a different way, referring to being alive or dead in the physical body. This means that even if you die physically on earth, if you are a believer, you will have eternal life with Him.

In Matthew ,Jesus uses the example of the Great Flood to explain that in those days life was going on as normal until the rain started. And when Jesus returns, the world will be unaware of what is going to happen until it is too late.

37 And as were the days of Noah, so shall be the [p]coming of the Son of man. 38 For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, 39 and they knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall be the [q]coming of the Son of man. 

Matthew 24:36

In Matthew 25, Jesus tells his disciples two parables that refer to being ready for Jesus’ return: the parable of the 10 virgins, the parable of the talents/servants. In these parables, the virgins and the servants were either wisely prepared and working until the groom or master came for them, or they were foolishly unprepared and worrying about their own concerns. These parables are about being ready for Jesus.

How do we get ready for Jesus?

Being awake or ready does not mean prepping for disaster (although that’s not a bad idea), or joining a doomsday cult, or that you have to walk around in sackcloth and ashes. It does not meaning joining the Jehovah Witness cult.

It does not mean being ‘woke’ to the oppressive political structures such as racism or classism, or ‘awake’ to the lies that have been told about history, science, evolution, etc. . You don’t have to a Christian to see that the world is broken and we have been lied to.

In fact, the political drama called being ‘awake’ can actually distract people from looking for the underlying spiritual causes. But to really understand the source of all that brokenness, you need to be truly awakened by God.

There is only one way to be awake and ready, you must be born again.

There are many ways to describe this instant moment(justification) and the ongoing process (sanctification) of having your heart changed from one devoted to self to one devoted to pleasing God, and also having your eyes opened to the things of God that unbelievers cannot understand. Some people call it accepting Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Others say you ask Jesus into your heart. Others call it being regenerated. You can also call it getting saved.

Being awake means that your sins have been forgiven and moved from CONDEMNED to SAVED. When this happens, you wake up! Instead of being unaware of the coming judgment and living in a false reality or dream that everything is fine, you are awake to the truth that Jesus is coming back soon to judge the unbelievers!

But it also means that you live your life in ways that reflect that you belong to God now. So once you are saved, Jesus says to obey his commandments, which are to love God and love people in all the many ways that this can be done. If you have no desire to follow Jesus and live a life pleasing to God, you probably are not a true believer. When you have the Spirit of God inside of you, after you are born again, you will have outward evidence of this, also called fruit.

Saved from a living death

The important thing is that you BELIEVE that Jesus is who He claimed to be, the Son of God, who came to save sinners. A sinner’s heart must be changed before his life will reflect that change. You can’t be ‘awake and ready’ for Jesus until you know Him. Before you know Jesus, you are DEAD. After you are born again, your spirit is made ALIVE by God’s spirit.

Fellow blogger Derek Melanson wrote an excellent post about what it means to be born again, saved, a Christian and living in a ready state of expectance for Jesus to return and live eternally with Him.

Today is the day of salvation.

Admit that you need Jesus to forgive your sins. Believe in His life, death, and resurrection. Confess Him as your Lord and Savior. Discover God through studying the Bible.

If you do this, you will be awake when our Savior returns.

This tree in my yard does not look like this now, but it has budded. Spring is coming!

One comment

  1. […] Don’t limit your reading to the Bible, however. There is so much more you can learn! Ancient history, archaeology, doctrine, eschatology, church history, current events in Israel and geography are just some of the subjects that will enhance your knowledge about God. You can find all kinds of information for free on the internet, but be sure the source is based on a Christian worldview that believes the Bible is the inspired and infallible word of God. Beware false teachers. […]

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