Scripture Passage: Romans 13: 11-14
11 And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14 Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.
What is sleep? The unconscious state of a human body, wherein we are unable to think or perform. After a day of hard work, sleep provides us with relief and purification/cleansing of our minds and body. Whereas there are some who pretend to be sleeping, alcohol, drugs, jealousy , unwanted thoughts, lust, and those who are slave to these only pretend to sleep. In fact they are unconscious or rather lost the power of thinking. The desire to be like God led to the first sin of mankind, anger and jealousy blinded Cain to kill his own brother Abel.
Sleep is a state where we are unable to pray.
Romans 13: 12, Man leads a decent life during the day, a life of discipline. We desire to be seen as a God fearing, decent and disciplined person by the world. Undisciplined life is like a cricket match without referee/umpire or a race without rules. But victory kisses the feet of those who are disciplined and follow the rules. Through Baptism we become members of parish and also members of the heavenly abode. We acquire this blessing at an age where we are unaware of the same. And when we become aware we should be leading a life of purity and discipline to be worthy to enter the kingdom of God. The Lord has provided us clear instructions to lead such a life through His words.
On this earth we are eager and willing to go to any extent to acquire worldly wealth which is as short lived as a soap bubble. There can be no games/ competition without rules. Undisciplined life leads to ruin. In Colossians 3: 9-10 we read
9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. It asks us to shed our old self , not to be kept safe in a locker/ pocket. Rather to burn it forever and obtain new identity in Christ. Jesus has said, ” I am the Light of the World“, then why don’t we automatically fill ourselves with this light. When we fill our souls with the light we are able to see everything clearly and in its true light. In Romans 13: 11 11 ” And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.” Salvation is near. Does it mean that the second coming is near? If so, what will happen to us this moment; Matthew 13: 41-43 reads 41 The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. 42 They will throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears, let them hear. So be alert and not let your soul sleep and fall prey to the Devil’s plans.
Today if we die, where do you think you will be? Heaven or Hell. Revelation 20: 12-15, we read
12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what they had done. 14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. 15 Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.
What will be our state when we stand with them? We read in 1 Thessalonians 5: 5-6, 5 You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. 6 So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober. and in Romans 13:14 , 14 Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh. This should be our response. The word of God talks about the same things, a life lacking in discipline and instructions will go down. So clean up your act and cleanse yourself.
Isaiah 38: 1, The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz went to him and said, “This is what the Lord says: Put your house in order, because you are going to die; you will not recover.” Today we do not have prophets to tell us the word of God or of His instructions. We can be called to join Him any moment. Children of God, our life does not end here, so wake up and get ready.
Like Jesus had said to His heavenly Father, “I am handing over my soul to you”. We should be able to do the same. People who are sleeping and those in deep sleep are unaware of the happenings around them. Those who are awake without much hard work are aware of their surroundings. So be conscious and awake in your soul. The Bible says, Ephesians 5: 14-17,
14 This is why it is said:
“Wake up, sleeper,
rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.”
15 Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.
These thoughts should be in our mind constantly and should be guide for your thoughts and action. Because if we are not careful we would be walking the wrong paths. The warnings are in the Bible too: Ecclesiastes 8: 11, When the sentence for a crime is not quickly carried out, people’s hearts are filled with schemes to do wrong.
Ecclesiastes 12: 14, For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.