Faithlife Sermons

Judgment Day

CCA Chapel  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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God's message about future events must shape how we live in the present



Most people, by nature are notoriously lazy
Anyone want to disagree with me on that?
If you had nothing to do over the weekend, wouldn’t most people choose to stay in their bed or on their couch bing-watching shows or scrolling through social media for hours on end?
I mean, it use to be if you had to go out, you’d at least fix yourself up a bit - run a comb through your hair at least
Now, just throw a hoodie on, go out in your pajamas and slip on your crocs - do your shopping while we all get to look at ya.
We’re lazy by nature - we need motivation and accountability to keep us from slipping into complete and total lethargy and slothfulness.
Why do we have scales in our bathrooms? - the older you get, the less you want that number to creep up
Why do teachers administer quizzes and tests? - they serve as a motivation to actually study and learn
If you’re an athlete, game day motivates you to get off the couch and put in the work
I grew up in the Michael Jordan era. I was in high school in the 90’s when the Chicago Bull’s were just dominating in the NBA.
So, I was just recently re-watching that docuseries that came out called “The Last Dance” which chronicled the Michael Jordan era of the Bulls rising to create the dynasty that they became.
Jordan was just built different than most people. He was motivated by a single-minded pursuit to win the NBA finals. He wanted that trophy and he didn’t want anyone else to have it.
In 1990 they lost to the Detroit Pistons who just walked all over the Bulls. They were just a bigger team, a more physical team and they just beat them up on the court.
Typically, after a season ends for a team, the team takes a break before getting back into the gym. That year, Jordan, the very next day was in the weight room prepping for next year.
He’s like, I got to put on muscle. I’m not getting pushed around anymore by the Pistons. And every other Bull followed his lead. Nobody took a break because they all become motivated to win that championship. And they did the very next year. They won the finals in 1991, 92, and 93. And then again in 96, 97, and 98.
The certainty of a coming evaluation or finality always serves as the best means for a present motivation.


The apostle Paul speaks here to these loved brothers and sisters in the church in Thessalonica reminding them of God’s judgment, which is coming.
He loved this church. His desire for them was that they would continue to grow in grace and that their lives would reflect that which they say they believe.
And so, he’s coming now to the end of this first letter with the motivation they need to hear.
He’s saying, remember, your life will be exposed before a Holy God. No one escapes that.
Have you ever been caught “red-handed?”
Like, usually, we try to deny wrong-doing, but have you ever been caught doing wrong and they’re are no words to give in defense?
The time I got caught stealing a toy from a kid we babysat
The author of Hebrews says,
Hebrews 4:13
And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
God sees everything. I’ll say it again. God sees everything. And nothing will ever go unpunished.
Some of you in your lives have been hurt and wounded by people who have seemingly “gotten away” with it.
God sees everything. And all wrong, all wickedness, all evil in this world will be dealt with
It’s dealt with in one of two ways
God’s judgment on sinners in an eternal Hell
The wrath-absorbing cross of Christ
Paul says, the judgment of God is coming. And the only way to survive God’s judgment is to avoid it altogether, and the only way to avoid it is by the deliverance that only Jesus can bring.
That’s what chapter 5 is about.
It’s a warning to those who are outside of Christ that judgment is coming
It’s an encouragement to the church to remain alert and self-controlled as we await the return of Jesus

Big Idea

God’s message about future events must shape how we live in the present.


1 Thessalonians 5:1–11
Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief. For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

God’s Judgment is Declared

Vs. 1-3 - “You are fully aware.” “Sudden destruction will come” “There will be no escape.”
This is what the “Day of the Lord is”
God has made his existence perfectly clear.
Psalm 19:1
The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Romans 1:19–20 (ESV)
For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
Yet, human beings naturally refuse to submit to God, to see him. In fact, we naturally reject him and find security in the things of this world (vs. 3)
And because of this rejection, judgment is coming
The story of sliding on ice on the way to Nashville - ignoring the signs and clear warnings (do not mention the police car - save it)
God has made himself perfectly clear, yet if we ignore him - judgment is coming
That’s the warning to those who do not believe
Gospel proclamation

God’s People Respond

This is a text to believers on how to respond and to be encouraged (vs. 4-8)
We are a new people living in a new kingdom with a new mindset
Vs. 5 - “Children of the light” “children of the day”
We are not children of God’s wrath, we’re children of God himself.
The book of Thessalonians is about God’s sanctifying work in our lives was empowering them to live confidently in the present and to look hopefully at the future.
Christians should never be caught off guard with anything but that God is moving human history toward a final consummation
This world is messed up and deeply broken
Earthquake in Turkey & Syria (over 50,000 dead)
We’re not caught off guard by this, instead:
We walk in the light (vs. 4-5)
live with purpose (6-8)
Walk in the light
It means to not live in a state of confusion
When we stop worrying about tomorrow, we are truly liberated to live for today.
Watching a recorded game knowing what the outcome will be (setbacks are only temporary)
Live with purpose
We must move past the why of salvation to the what of salvation
We don’t “sleep” - live in a state of ignorance
We’re watchful
We take our faith seriously
We recognize we’re in a battle (vs. 8)
Breastplate of faith and love
faith reflects confidence
love declares loyalty
Helmet - the hope of salvation
hope provides security
Two great dangers - the heart and the head
Believe what God says by faith; do what God requires out of love; and trust what God promises because of hope.

God’s Deliverance Comes

After I had slid on the ice with only headlights coming toward me - it was a police car that was first there to turn his lights on and stop traffic so I wouldn’t be hit.
As soon as I saw the lights I felt an overwhelming sense of hope
God has delivered us from the wrath to come (vs. 9a)
God has delivered us from the power of sin (vs. 9b-10)
God has delivered us from discouragement (vs 11)
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