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. 1 Thessalonians 5:4-11
What a fantastic promise for all believers is found in today’s verses. Paul tells us that we will avoid God’s wrath. Some have taken this to mean that believers will escape the end time tribulation and coupled with 1 Thessalonians 4:17 this makes sense. However, even if our escape does not refer to the tribulation period we will not face the final judgment and be sent off from God’s presence.
I have often seen and been asked if God is loving how can He send good people to hell? Why doesn’t God let everyone into heaven? This reminds me of the person who is caught speeding and when he is pulled over want to know why the policeman isn’t out there catching real criminals. The when he appears before the judge argues that he was only going a little over the speed limit and everyone else was speeding and in fact he was better than the rest of them. Unable to acknowledge his guilt he seeks to put his actions as better than most. The judge finds him guilty because he broke the law. It matters little that others also broke the law and the judge does not take into account that most times this driver drives within the speed limit. He is led off to pay his fine.
The believer is like another speeder who has Jesus as his lawyer. Jesus goes before the judge and tells the judge that my client has admitted his guilt and throws himself on the mercy of the court. But Jesus goes further when he tells the judge that rather than dismiss the case Jesus will pay the fine and the speeder can go free. The judge agrees and the speeder has his guilt taken on by his lawyer.
God is ready to allow everyone into heaven. Jesus has already paid the price for the sins of everyone. All God asks is that each of us admit we have sinned and throw ourselves on the mercy of God. It is such a simple thing but some are either too stubborn to admit they need God’s mercy, they are good enough, or they refuse to admit the judge, God even exists even when confronted with evidence. Then they turn around and blame God for not letting them into heaven.
All God ever does is honor the choice each of us makes during our life. He will not force the unbeliever to spend eternity in Hid presence so God sends them away from Him. Having read numerous descriptions of hell I think the real torment that burns forever is the knowledge that the unbeliever was wrong that God does indeed exists and it is too late.
Have a blessed day,