11 And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.
The word “for” shows why it is necessary to awake out of sleep. “Now” indicates the nearness of ultimate salvation for the believer, the imminent return of our Lord.
1 Th 1: 10 and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.
1 Pe 1: 13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
Salvation here is our ultimate salvation, the consummation of the period when Jesus comes back again. Paul repeated the word “now” from the previous phrase, indicating the imminence of Jesus’ coming and the arrival of a new day.
Ro 8: 23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.
He 9: 28 so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.
is nearer than when we first believed.
Our present time will not go on forever. It will come to an end one day, the day that Jesus comes again. God has a predetermined end for our time. He is in control of time and its events.
Each day brings us closer to Jesus coming to take us home. The day of our salvation is nearer than when we came to Christ. The imminent expectation of the coming of Christ is clear in this verse. Every day brings us closer to that final day when our salvation will be fulfilled in all its completeness.
Ja 5: 8 You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.
Re 1: 3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near.
Re 22: 10 And he said to me, “Do not seal the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is at hand.
God motivates the spiritual Christian through the anticipation of Christ’s coming.
Christians must make a decisive commitment to expect salvation on the near horizon. God expects us to eagerly anticipate the coming of Christ (1 Th 5:1-11, 23; He 10:24f; Ja 5:7-11; 1 Pe 4:7-11). The fullness of our salvation is yet to come. We see the present time in light of both what Jesus did for us and what He will do.