July 7, 2008 • By Ed Wrather
(Update of a devotional from 1998)
Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart. But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness nor handling the word of God deceitfully, but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. - 2 Corinthians 4:1-4 NKJV.
But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes. - 1 John 2:11 NKJV.
One morning about ten years ago I woke up with a ruptured disc in my back with severe pain down my left leg (A few weeks later the pain was gone and my back was much better.). Two weeks after that morning I woke up with a brown recluse spider bite on my left leg (It slowly healed and it is hard to even see the scar now. I am very thankful for all who prayed for me and to the Lord for answering those prayers!) I can only conclude after those two incidents that sleeping can sometimes be dangerous!!
Of course Samson could confirm that sleeping is dangerous (Judges 16:19). Sisera could also confirm that sleeping is dangerous (Judges 4:21) and there are several others that could as well in the Bible. Eutychus could confirm that it is dangerous to sleep in church (Acts 20:9). But the most dangerous sleep of all is the spiritual sleep of those who have been blinded by the god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4). Those blinded by the god of this world (satan) appear to be unconcerned about death. They appear to have little concern for anything other than the material world. Spiritually you can only describe them as being asleep to the reality of eternity. There seems to be so many of them and they think they know where they are going, but “the darkness has blinded” their eyes.
It may be that the reason so many are blinded by satan is that there is another category of sleepers. That category is the sleeping Christian. The apostle Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 5:6-8, “Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation.”
Time is rocketing forward as we move closer and closer to the time when our Lord Jesus returns. The time that we have to reach those blinded by satan is running out. Let us wake up and reach out to those around us who are so close to entering eternity without Christ and without hope. As the apostle Paul writes to the Thessalonians, “For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Is it not even you in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His coming? For you are our glory and joy (1 Thessalonians 2:19).”