1 Thess 5:1-3 Now 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.
For the last week or so I have been discussing end times. Last week I looked at the rapture and some reasons for a Pre-Trib Rapture. Today I want to look at God’s judgment which is referred to in the Bible as the Day of the Lord. Joel 2 clues us into the fact that this isn’t going to be a nice event and Revelation 6-19 shows us how this plays out on a large scale. As Paul is writing the Thessalonians he isn’t trying to be academic but instead encourage a church which is afraid that it missed the rapture and is living in the Day of the Lord.
The Day of the Lord is a period of time of God pouring out his wrath on earth for the judgment of sin. While a lot of people would argue that a loving God would never do anything like this the reality of the matter is that for God to send His Son Jesus Christ He must first deal with man’s sin. He dealt with it first through the Cross. Jesus made salvation from the judgment of sin obtainable through His death (1 Thess 5:9-10). The second way he is going to deal with sin is through the Tribulation and most pointedly through the Day of the Lord.
While many debate when the actual Day of the Lord will start we can be assured that it will happen. It will be a sudden thing that will catch many by surprise, hence the metaphor of “Thief in the Night.” It will be a horrifying period of time of cataclysmic proportions. Fortunately for Christians we will not be a part of it. 1 Thess 5:9 says “For God has not destined us for wrath.” Wrath is another term for the Day of the Lord. As part of God’s family we will be spared from this. Essentially it is not our destiny. Our destiny is to be in the presence of the Lord which is what will happen when the Rapture takes us off of earth.
Don’t worry about when this will happen. Watching the clock is useless because even Jesus said it is only for His Father to know the day and time (Acts 1:7). Instead look forward to Christ coming back with anticipation and be motivated by it to reach out to those who have not obtained salvation. Church lets act now to reach those that are lost and hurting.