1 Thessalonians 5:5-6
Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
The Apostle Paul was writing to the new church at Thessalonica that he had established during one of his missionary journeys. These were relatively new Christians and they were facing lots of opposition from the leaders of the organized religion of the day. The “church” of that day was so upset about Paul preaching Christ and establishing Christian churches that they had followed him to his next stop to try and prevent what he was doing there. Their persecution was also directed at the new converts in their own city to attempt to destroy the church there.
In his letter Paul had just previously warned these new believers that Christ would in fact return for them. He then begins to admonish them to remain awake, not sleep and watch because they were children of the day.
Not every human being is born during daylight hours and no can physically stay awake and never sleep. So are children born during hours of darkness and are people who have to sleep, not eligible to go with the Lord when He returns for us? Certainly not. This is an implicit passage of scripture given by Paul implying what we are to do spiritually by relating to what we know physically. It is not explicit commands of do this or you are doomed.
To sleep, as the translators of the New Testament used it here, means to yield to sloth and sin and it means to be indifferent to one’s salvation. Therefore we can’t allow the world’s way of thinking and the world’s constant pursuit of material things and riches wear us down and cause us to become indifferent to our salvation. The price of our salvation was the agonizing crucifixion and death of the Only Begotten Son of God at Calvary. What a price! What a display of unconditional love!
When the opposition of human beings and the madness of this world’s ways begin to creep in and divert our vision from Jesus Christ let us look back to the suffering and death of Jesus Christ at Calvary and our vision will be renewed and we will find fresh love, forgiveness and peace filling our immortal soul. As the Bible says in 2 Thessalonians 3:13, “But ye, brethren, be not weary in well doing.”