Wake Up and Get a Life!

Ephesians is a companion letter to Colossians, and here we find the bracing instruction, taken perhaps from an early Christian poem or hymn: “Awake, sleeper, rise from the dead, and the Messiah will give you light!” (5:14).

In other words, it’s time to wake up! Living at the level of the nonheavenly world around you is like being asleep; worse, it’s like that for which sleep is a metaphor–being dead. Lying, stealing, sexual immorality, bad temper, and so on (Paul lists them all in a devastating short passage) are forms of death, both for the person who commits them and for all whose lives are touched by their actions. They are ways of sleeping a deadly sleep. It’s time to wake up, he says. Come alive to the real world, the world where Jesus is Lord, the world into which your baptism brings you, the world you claim to belong to when you say inthe creed that Jesus is Lord and that God raised him from the dead.

What we all need from time to time is for someone (a friend, a spiritual director, a stranger, a sermon, a verse of scripture, or simply the inner prompting of the Spirit) to say, “It’s time to wake up! You’ve been asleep long enough! The sun is shining and there’s a wonderful day out there! Wake up and get a life!”

– N.T. Wright, Surprised by Hope






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