Who’s Afraid of the Dark?

Rob Matthews

READ : 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

For you are all children of light, children of the day. (v. 5)

One of the most important sets of lights in a theater are the emergency lights. While these are legally required to be in good working order, an experienced stage manager will have them checked regularly, just for peace of mind. After all, should the electricity fail during a show, hundreds of people would be stuck in the dark; in that darkness lives a stage manager’s worst fear—panic.

Groups of people panic in the dark because they fear the unknown. In a strange place, surrounded by unfamiliar people, we fear the worst will happen, and that it will catch us by surprise.

This is what Paul is getting at in this passage. He describes Christ’s second coming and God’s just judgment as being something that will catch the unbeliever off guard. It will come unexpectedly, “like a thief in the night.” For the Christian, however, there is no surprise. While we do not know when judgment day will come, we rest easy knowing that Christ took our punishment on the cross so that we could be declared “not guilty” before God. It is the radiance of this truth that makes us “children of light, children of the day” who have nothing to panic about.


Father God, thank you for the gift of your Son Jesus Christ, whose death paid the penalty for our sins and whose resurrection gives us the hope of a world reconciled to you. Amen.