“Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light.” Romans 13:11-12 ESV
Yesterday we did a nice study about getting some physical rest. Good solid stuff. It is important to rest when we live in such a time as this – because spiritually it is time to wake up!! Let’s read the above verse again in the Amplified Bible:
“Do this, knowing that this is a critical time. It is already the hour for you to awaken from your sleep [of spiritual complacency]; for our salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed [in Christ].” Romans 13:11 AMP
I suppose the first question I should ask myself is: am I asleep in deep slumber? Maybe just a nap? In some lucid state somewhere between asleep and awake? Am I nodding off occasionally? Am I in that groggy state of morning awake before I am even able to make coffee? Am I awake? How awake?
This is an important. Especially now. Our salvation, the rapture (when Jesus comes to take His church home) is closer than when we first believed. If in the first century it was closer – it is all the more now – right now – in such a time as this. The amplified calls the time “a critical time”. Well, if a pandemic that locks all the people around the world in their homes is not surreal enough to be called critical, then I do not know what is!
But I do know the night is far gone. In the end times (as it gets closer to the rapture) lots of signs must happen and are happening. One sign is a time of spiritual complacency, the night, followed by an awakening. Look around – are your eyes open to see it? Do you see the prodigals coming? They are on their way – I know, because God brought me back and I know the road and I see them coming!
Do you see the new names showing up in the church’s feed on social media? Do you see more images of verses and “God” stuff on social media in general?
Do you feel it in the air – the air feels like its harvest time? Time to bring in the harvest!
The night is far gone – the day is at hand!!! The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand!
“Cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light”
Let’s start making a few very important connections in scripture. The Apostle Paul wrote Romans and Ephesians and this reference to armor shows up in both books. It’s important because as we wake up we should get dressed properly – and we are in a spiritual battle. Do you think the enemy (satan and demons) are going to just let us harvest all these hungry souls? The world has been in hibernation and wakes up hungry for God; and as the equivalent to the first century church wakes up there will be a fight for our unsaved love-ones and friends. So as Paul says in Ephesians…
“10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” Galatians 6:10-18 NIV
How do we know that the church that is waking up and being called in the harvest is equivalent to the first century church? When Isaiah is prophesying Jesus coming in Isaiah 35 – there have been theological debates about which verses prophesy which time periods of Christ’s return. Some say verses 1-7 are His first coming and 8-10 the second coming – after the rapture when Earth shall be made new. Is it possible the whole timeline is in there? Jesus comes in verse one and completes the work of the cross and maybe 3-6 are about a time period before the second coming mentioned in 8-10? A time period of strengthening, harvest and the signs and miracles all over again like seen in the time of Jesus and the first century church.
“Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees. Say to those who have an anxious heart, “Be strong; fear not! Behold, your God will come with vengeance, with the recompense of God. He will come and save you.” Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped; then shall the lame man leap like a deer, and the tongue of the mute sing for joy. For waters break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert” Isaiah 35:3-6 ESV
Strengthening – stretching as we wake up. And those who are anxious, and other versions say fearful! Sound a lot like the times in which we live. I long to see the eyes of the blind opened, ears of the deaf unstopped, lame men leap, mutes singing!!! This will be so much more than ‘spring up a well’! This shall be waters breaking forth in the wilderness and desert! Expect a great wave!
Jesus warns that we may miss it – we may not wake up in time. God forbid!
“34 “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap. 35 For it will come on all those who live on the face of the whole earth. 36 Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:34-36 NIV
Come Lord Jesus, come! And bring in the harvest!
“The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9 NKJV
Not willing that any should perish!!! Bring in the harvest!
“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the Lord will arise upon you, and his glory will be seen upon you.” Isaiah 60:1-2 ESV
In this case we can say the thick darkness is slumber and sleep – but it’s high time to wake up! The Lord will shine His light upon us and we can spread the light around the world.
“And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.” Romans 13:11 KJV
I, personally, fear saying I am awake – or that I am on fire for God. I have not seen the fullness of the signs and wonders of God’s promise. I have seen my own transformation and that alone is a testimony great enough to overcome satan and bring others in to Christ. But what if I have a reputation of being alive, but I am not. You see – that is a warning written in Revelations. A warning in relation to waking up!
“I know your works. You have the reputation of being alive, but you are dead. 2 Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. 3 Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you” Revelations 3:1b-3
Wake up and strengthen what remains – this sounds a lot like that passage in Isaiah about strengthening the hands and knees, right?
For I have not found your work complete – No, my work, what I am called to is not complete. I have only just begun.
Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent – and repent – repentance in a life style. Sinning less and less – growing more and more. Always remember to ask forgiveness for your sins and turn away from them. I think that last verse says Hell is our alternative – So let’s do this!!!
SOMEONE SOUND THE MORNING ALARM CLOCK!!! IT IS HIGH TIME TO WAKE UP!
“Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” 1 Corinthians 15:51-54 ESV
Maranatha ~ Come Lord Jesus!
~Grace be with you ~
~Thank you for reading ~ Be healthy and blessed ~
~ Pray for our nation ~ Pray Psalm 91 ~