Scripture Reference: St. Luke 12:35-40
You sometimes hear someone make a casual remark such as, “I hope I don’t die suddenly. I want to have time to straighten out some things in my life.” The question is, “If there are things that need to be done, why don’t you do them now. “ We shouldn’t wait until the doctor tells us that we have three weeks to live to straighten out our lives. The truth is that none of us knows we have another three weeks to live.
You must be ready to move when Christ returns. Jesus spoke often of his return. He told his disciples in John 14:3, “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”
In Luke’s gospel (12:35) we find the first extended teaching on the Second Coming of Jesus and here he warns his followers to be ready. The relationship between Jesus’ prior words about treasure in heaven and watchfulness is obvious. The one who has his treasure in heaven will be ready and watching for the Lord’s return; the one who has his heart set on the treasures of this world will be caught completely unaware at His coming. In the verses of today’s text we are given three distinct characteristics of a “good waiter.” Waiting is not the absence of doing anything constructive. Waiting is not a static state, it is a time when God is working behind the scenes and his primary focus is on us. We try to wait patiently. The hardest part of waiting is just that waiting. Waiting involves time and we don’t know when our waiting will be over.
The first characteristic of a “Good Waiter” is Preparation. (35-36).What do we say to someone today that we want to be prepared to accompany us some place? –We say “be dressed and ready”
Jesus said in verse35, “Let your waist be girded and your lamps burning; (36) and you yourselves be like men who wait on their master, when he will return from the wedding, that when he comes and knocks they may open to him immediately.”
These servants were truly remarkable. They did not give in to fatigue, they displayed no irritation, they did not sport an “attitude.” Rather they kept the light burning and them-selves in a constant state of readiness to spring up at a moment’s notice to joyous welcome their master home. In 2 Thess. 3:13, Paul urges Christians “…. Do not grow weary in well doing.” We cannot give up and stop, or even tire and slow down, there is too much at stake. Whenever we as Christians take our eyes off of Jesus, we will begin to slack off, the church will begin to decline. We cannot stop because we are having a spiritual dry moment, we need to be faithful.
The second characteristic of a “Good Waiter” is Expectancy (v. 38) “And if he should come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants:” Though it was late at night these servants were still dressed and ready for service. That is, they were not only fully clothed they had their “waist girded,” which means they had their long robes tucked into their belts, making it possible for them to move quickly to the door. They had done everything in their power to be ready.
This verse reveals that the time of the Lord’s return should not be the Christians major concern. What is important is being prepared and living a life of expectancy. Paul describes the way that he tried to live his life in his letter to the Philippians (1:20) when he says “my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but will all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.
The third characteristic of a “Good Waiter” is Faithfulness. “Blessed are those servants whom the master, when he comes, will find watching. Assuredly, I say to you that he will gird himself and have them sit down to eat and come and serve them.” The master was so moved by the faithfulness of his servants that instead of sitting down at the table to be served, he dressed himself to wait on them ( in fact the same word is used in the original language to describe how they were dressed ready for service (v. 35). He made them to recline at the table and he served them! In a few short weeks Jesus wrapped a towel around his waist and washed the feet of the twelve as they sat in the upper room (John 13:1-17).
St. Luke 12:39, “But know this that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. (40) Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” So when will the Lord return? “The Lord is not slow about his promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.” (2 Peter 3:3-11.)
In the midst of our service to the Lord we are called to remain faithful to our Lord by being dressed in readiness, keeping alert in the midst of our ministry, knowing that the Lord will return, and then he will bring blessing to those servants who are faithful and judgment to those servants who are unfaithful.
Jesus is coming again. The first time he came with the offer of salvation; the second time the world will see him rule and reign on this earth as the righteous Judge. If we reject his wonderful offer of salvation now, we will have to meet him as our Judge at the time of our death or in his glorious second coming. Since now is the day of salvation, I beg you, don’t put off his offer of salvation today. You may not have another day on this earth to make your decision. Do it now!
Posted by Fay-Ann Swearing
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