A New Day Dawning: Romans 13:11-14
“11) Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. 12) The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13) Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy. 14) But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts. Romans 13:11-14
This text takes some serious pondering. As noted in the previous post, the times were changing. Difficult times were mounting. Nevertheless, Paul was using language of a new day dawning.
Verse 12 says; “The night is almost gone, and the day is at hand.” This seems like a reference to the return of Christ. Paul believed in the eminence of the return of Jesus. He sincerely thought that Jesus might return in his days.
In the midst of dark times of persecution, he saw the dawn on the horizon. “Salvation was nearer to them than when they believed.” Why did he see the dawn of a new day on the horizon? I believe it was because God was at work in extraordinary ways.
Therefore, he called them to godly and holy living in keeping with 1 John 2:28. Like John, he did not want believers to shrink away from Jesus in shame at His sudden return. Paul did not focus on the rise of the anti-Christ even though Rome matched the description, instead he focused on the return of Christ. What a radically different perspective from the modern church.
This brings up some crucial points for our serious consideration. Contrary to all of the gloom and doom talk of the end times, the early church was having a very different conversation that carried them through hard times. They were not fixated on the end, they were focused on the new day that would accompany the return of Christ. Let that sink in!
The modern church has adopted erroneous theology from many pagan religions that talk about a cataclysmic end of planet earth. Stop! The Bible paints a radically different picture. Though the anti-Christ will bring difficult times, Jesus is about to overthrow his malicious plans with His glorious return and millennial reign on earth. (See Revelation 20:1-20)
In the meanwhile, nothing will hinder the work of God in and through the true church. In fact, I believe times of great revival and awakening will come upon the bride preparing her to meet her Groom. According to Ephesians 5:26-27, Jesus is going to sanctify, cleanse and wash the church with His Word, “27) That He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she should be holy and blameless.”
This view is in keeping with Paul’s appeal in Romans 13:12-14. Paul was imploring the church to put aside the deeds of darkness in preparation of the new day. He wanted them to “behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy.” (Vs 13) Rather, he wanted them to “put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.” (Vs 14)
This should be the conversation and focus of the church today! Rather than promoting fear, we should be embracing the blessed hope of the return of Christ.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global
A New Day Dawning: Romans 13:11-14