Many of us have read the following verses in 1 Thessalonians about the return of our dear Lord Jesus - (v16) "For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. (v17) Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. (v18) Therefore comfort one another with these words." Many of us have also read further into 1 Thessalonians chapter 5 where it speaks of the Lord coming as a thief in the night. Or does it? I'd like for you to look at these verses in chapter 5 again ~ (v1) "But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. (v2) For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. (v3) For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. (v4) BUT YOU, BRETHREN, ARE NOT IN DARKNESS, SO THAT THIS DAY SHOULD OVERTAKE YOU AS A THIEF. (v5) You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. (v6) Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober."
Wait a minute! I've heard all my life that the Lord's return will come as "a thief in the night", meaning it will creep up on us, and we will not be aware of His coming until the trumpet sounds! As I was reading this scripture several months ago, I realized that His return will only be as "a thief in the night" to the unbelievers, for they are the ones in darkness. We who are believers "are not in darkness, so that this day should overtake us as a thief". This means that we who are living in the light, will be able to discern the time of the Lord's coming, and we will live accordingly. It is true that we are not able to know the day or the hour of His return, but we can know the "times & seasons". I admonish you, saints of God, to know in what hour we are living. There is not much time before our Lord returns to take us with him, and we must "not sleep, but watch (be vigilant), and be sober"!