We must be ready for Jesus to return
1 Friends, we do not need to write anything to you about the dates and times when these things will happen. 2 You know very well about how the great day of the Lord will happen. That day will surprise people very much, like when a robber comes in the night. 3 At that time, people will be saying, ‘We are safe and there is no trouble for us.’ But then, when they are not ready for it, great punishment will suddenly happen to them. It will be impossible for them to run away. Pain will suddenly come to them, like a woman who is giving birth to a baby.
4 But you, our Christian friends, know about these things. You are not like people who live in the dark. So when the great day of the Lord happens, it should not suddenly surprise you, like a robber might surprise you. 5 All of you are people who belong to the light and to the day. We who are believers do not belong to the night or to the dark. 6 So we must watch carefully. We should be like people who stay awake. We should not be like other people who are sleeping. 7 It is at night that people sleep. It is at night that people become drunk.
8 But we belong to the day, not to the night. So we should think clearly. We must prepare ourselves like a soldier who puts on his armour. We must continue to trust God and to love him. That will be like a metal shirt that keeps our body safe. We must also continue to hope that God will save us. That will be like a strong hat that keeps our head safe.
9 God did not choose us as his people so that he could be angry with us. He chose us so that he could save us because of what our Lord Jesus Christ has done. 10 Jesus died on our behalf so that we can live together with him. It does not matter whether we are alive or dead when he returns. We will all go to live with him. 11 Because of that, you should help each other to become stronger as believers. I know that you are already doing that.