STAY AWAKE AND KEEP WATCH

Kathy Overshiner


When I was growing up as a child, my father’s life time career was a night watchman for a big furniture factory. He guarded furniture and nights he would make his routine rounds to check on the place to see that it was all locked up, there weren’t any break- in, any fires and everything was normal. He not only did night watchman nights, but he also did watchman days on weekends .When he was younger, he had been a police officer. One night at the age of six, I was sleeping too close to the edge of the bed, and suddenly, I fell off the bed and landed hard on the floor. This immediately woke me up and I started crying. My father who out of habit being a night watchman came to see what the commotion was. He checked the upstairs out, because I was just a child, I told him something was after me. Of course my father found nothing after me. As an adult now, I see the world’s commotion and the end time signs all about us, I cannot help but think that we shouldn’t be sleeping, but wake up and be watching for our redemption.

Jesus saw the absence of the inner reality of himself in the hearts of the people in the churches (which definitely includes today’s churches). He saw religion, but not spiritual life. They were spiritually dead and only a few true faithful. Rev 3:3

“Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard: Obey it, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.”

1Thess 5:6

“So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert, and self- controlled.”

Be alert means to “stay awake and keep watch.” The apostle Paul is not urging us to be alert for the day of the Lord, but we are to be spiritually prepared in order to escape the wrath of that day.

Luke 12: 37-38

“It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. I tell you the truth, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the second or third watch of the night. But understand this: if the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.”

Jesus tells us there is a special blessing and care of his presence reserved for those who in full readiness and faithfulness “wait” and “watch” for their Lord’s return during the interval between His ascension and His second coming.

No one knows the day, hour or year our Lord will return

Mark 13: 32-37

“No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the son, but only the father. Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come. It’s like a man going away: he leaves his house and puts his servants in charge, each with his assigned task, and tells the one at the door to keep watch. Therefore keep watch because you do not know when the owner of the house will come back-whether in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or at dawn. If he comes suddenly, do not let him find you sleeping. What I say to you, I say to everyone: “Watch!”

Because Jesus declared that his return for his church (the faithful believers) could occur at four possible times during the night or early morning hours, this indicates that his coming for them could be at any time and emphasizes the unexpectedness and secret-ness of his coming in the rapture. Because it is unexpected and imminent, all believers must be faithful and spiritually alert.

Rev: 3: 10

“Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of the trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test those who live on the earth”

Those of the earth are the ungodly people. This promise Jesus said extends throughout the ages as it did during Paul’s day. It extends to all God’s faithful that they would be rescued from the “coming wrath” This hour includes the divinely appointed time of trial, wrath and distress that will come upon the whole world in the last days of this age, just prior to Jesus’ establishment of his kingdom on the earth. This trial “hour” involves God’s wrath on the ungodly. (Rev Ch 6-19, MT 24:9, I Thess 5:2). Satan during this time will also have his wrath on Christ’s tribulation saints. For them, they will suffer loss of home, hunger, war, famines and death. For those of us who have kept God’s word before that day, “hour of trial,” God will keep us from it most likely through the rapture; “the catching up” of the faithful to meet the Lord in the air, just before he pours out His wrath. This deliverance is our reward for keeping God’s word through true faith.

I Thess 4: 16-18

“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the arch angel, and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words. “

John 6: 28-29

Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?” Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

We know the hour is getting late, and it is time for us to repent of our sins, Jesus died for us at the cross, took our sins upon him and rose up (ascension) and is at the right hand of God making intercession for us. Accept Jesus as your Lord and savior and his blood will cleanse you of all your sins. Jesus will forgive you. Come Jesus, AMEN