The Message

1 Thessalonians 5

11-3 I don’t think, friends, that I need to deal with the question of when all this is going to happen. You know as well as I that the day of the Master’s coming can’t be posted on our calendars. He won’t call ahead and make an appointment any more than a burglar would. About the time everybody’s walking around complacently, congratulating each other—“We’ve sure got it made! Now we can take it easy!”—suddenly everything will fall apart. It’s going to come as suddenly and inescapably as birth pangs to a pregnant woman.

4-8 But friends, you’re not in the dark, so how could you be taken off guard by any of this? You’re sons of Light, daughters of Day. We live under wide open skies and know where we stand. So let’s not sleepwalk through life like those others. Let’s keep our eyes open and be smart. People sleep at night and get drunk at night. But not us! Since we’re creatures of Day, let’s act like it. Walk out into the daylight sober, dressed up in faith, love, and the hope of salvation.

9-11 God didn’t set us up for an angry rejection but for salvation by our Master, Jesus Christ. He died for us, a death that triggered life. Whether we’re awake with the living or asleep with the dead, we’re alive with him! So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. I know you’re already doing this; just keep on doing it.

The Way He Wants You to Live

12-13 And now, friends, we ask you to honor those leaders who work so hard for you, who have been given the responsibility of urging and guiding you along in your obedience. Overwhelm them with appreciation and love!

13-15 Get along among yourselves, each of you doing your part. Our counsel is that you warn the freeloaders to get a move on. Gently encourage the stragglers, and reach out for the exhausted, pulling them to their feet. Be patient with each person, attentive to individual needs. And be careful that when you get on each other’s nerves you don’t snap at each other. Look for the best in each other, and always do your best to bring it out.

16-18 Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live.

19-22 Don’t suppress the Spirit, and don’t stifle those who have a word from the Master. On the other hand, don’t be gullible. Check out everything, and keep only what’s good. Throw out anything tainted with evil.

23-24 May God himself, the God who makes everything holy and whole, make you holy and whole, put you together—spirit, soul, and body—and keep you fit for the coming of our Master, Jesus Christ. The One who called you is completely dependable. If he said it, he’ll do it!

25-27 Friends, keep up your prayers for us. Greet all the followers of Jesus there with a holy embrace. And make sure this letter gets read to all the brothers and sisters. Don’t leave anyone out.

28 The amazing grace of Jesus Christ be with you!

Chinese Contemporary Bible (Traditional)

帖撒羅尼迦前書 5

主來的日子

1弟兄姊妹,這件事會在什麼日期、什麼時候發生,不必我寫信告訴你們, 因為你們已經清楚知道,將來有一天,主會突然來到,像賊在夜裡忽然出現一樣。 當人們正在說一切平安穩妥的時候,災禍會像產痛臨到孕婦一樣突然臨到他們,令他們無法逃脫。

然而,弟兄姊妹,你們不是活在黑暗裡,因此那日子不會像賊一樣突然臨到你們。 你們都是光明之子,白晝之子。我們既不屬於黑夜,也不屬於黑暗。 所以不要像其他人一樣沉睡,要警醒戒備, 因為睡覺的人是在夜裡睡,醉酒的人是在夜裡醉。 我們既屬於白晝,就應當保持清醒,要把信心和愛心當作護心鏡遮胸,把得救的盼望當作頭盔戴上。 因為上帝不是預定我們受懲罰,而是預定我們靠著主耶穌基督得救。 10 主替我們死,使我們無論是醒是睡[a],都可以與祂同活。 11 所以,你們要彼此鼓勵、互相造就,正如你們一向所做的。

勸勉與問候

12 弟兄姊妹,我勸你們要敬重那些在你們當中辛勤工作、在主裡領導和勸誡你們的人。 13 因為他們的工作,你們要懷著愛心格外敬重他們。你們要彼此和睦相處。 14 此外,我勸你們要告誡懶惰的人,鼓勵灰心的人,扶持軟弱的人,耐心對待所有的人。 15 你們要小心,誰都不可冤冤相報,總要彼此善待,也要善待眾人。

16 要常常喜樂, 17 不斷地禱告, 18 凡事謝恩,因為這是上帝在基督耶穌裡給你們的旨意。

19 不要抑制聖靈的感動, 20 不要輕視先知的信息。 21 凡事都要小心察驗,持守良善的事, 22 杜絕所有的惡事。

23 願賜平安的上帝使你們完全聖潔!願祂保守你們的靈、魂、體,使你們在主耶穌基督再來的時候無可指責! 24 呼召你們的主是信實可靠的,祂必為你們成就這事。

25 弟兄姊妹,請為我們禱告。 26 要以聖潔的吻問候眾弟兄姊妹。 27 最後,我奉主的名吩咐你們把這封信讀給所有弟兄姊妹聽。

28 願我們主耶穌基督的恩典與你們同在!

Footnotes

  1. 5·10 是醒是睡」或譯「是生是死」。