February 21 2019
Volume 23, Number 8
Justin Koerner’s story was unbelievable – except it was true. His car ended up in a yard one recent Sunday morning, and Justin was found sleeping inside. The Newark, New Jersey police assumed he was drunk, but he passed their field sobriety tests.
Security cameras in the neighborhood confirmed the reality of what Koerner thought had been a dream. While he was sleeping in the back seat of his car, two individuals jumped in to steal it (the motor was running). They quickly realized there was a sleeping man inside, and bailed out of the car less than a minute after stealing it. That’s how he ended up in someone’s yard.
Koerner described himself in the “Newark Post” article as “a sleep anywhere kind of guy”, and thought nothing of dozing in the back seat of his running car. He may now think twice about sleeping “anywhere”.
Cars are not mentioned in the Bible, of course, but the danger of falling asleep when we should be awake are frequently discussed.
Paul had just written about the certainty of Christ’s second coming, and said that its timing would be “as a thief in the night” (1 Thessalonians 5:2). He then made this appeal: “You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober.”
Paul was not referring to actual sleep. Physical sleep is a necessity for most of us; even if we try to deny it, sleep will eventually come. He warning was about spiritual carelessness, a lack of seriousness about walking in God’s light.
Jesus took three of His most trusted followers with Him into the Garden of Gethsemane. He knew the hour was near when He would be arrested and all that would follow. He asked His friends to “stay here and watch with Me” (Matthew 26:38).
Soon Jesus returned to find Peter, James, and John all asleep. He woke them with this warning: “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matthew 26:41). But the three were soon asleep again.
Could Peter have avoided the most humiliating moments of his life – when he denied knowing the Master he had followed for three years? If only he had “stayed awake” and been more watchful he wouldn’t have been seized by Satan.
Are we also vulnerable? Could we sleep (spiritually) when we ought to be awake? “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12).
Come to the light God offers! Study His word, the Bible. Worship Him in spirit and truth (John 4:24). Get in touch with us if you’d like to discuss these ideas further.
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Copyright, 2019, Timothy D. Hall. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise noted, are from the New King James Version (Copyright, 1990, Thomas Nelson, Inc.).
“LightGrams” is produced by the Central Church of Christ, 2722 Oakland Avenue, Johnson City, Tennessee, 37601, and is written by Tim Hall, minister. It is sent free of charge every Thursday to all who request it. To subscribe or to receive more information, write to “Tim@GraceMine.org” (our E-mail address), to the U.S. mail address above, or call (423) 282-1571.
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