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Revelation 3:3





3 Remember [mnemoneuo] therefore [oun] how [pos] thou hast received [lambano] and [kai] heard, [akouo] and [kai] hold fast, [tereo] and [kai] repent. [metanoeo] If [ean me] therefore [oun] thou shalt [gregoreuo] not [ean me] watch, [gregoreuo] I will come [heko] on [epi] thee [se] as [hos] a thief, [kleptes] and [kai] thou shalt [ginosko] not [ou me] know [ginosko] what [poios] hour [hora] I will come [heko] upon [epi] thee. [se]    KJV-Interlinear



3 'Remember therefore what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. If therefore you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come upon you.    NASB



The warning.  Remember, and keep and repent.  Recall what you have learned in doctrine.  Remember that your life is determined around your attitude toward God and Bible doctrine.  If you are positive then there is great spiritual growth potential for you resulting in a great life on this earth and an even greater life awaiting you in eternity.If you go negative, don't care, begin to think that this Bible stuff is not that big a deal, then the shock will come to you, too late most likely.


Christ will come as a thief, and you will not know what hit you.Many think that this is a rapture passage, and of course when the rapture occurs we will not be surprised at that instant.  Christ will descend into the clouds (He does not come down to touch the ground), and with a shout, a blast of the trumpet, all will rise.  The dead in Christ first, then we who are alive will arise into the clouds and so forth.


But in this passage there is a surprise.  A thief comes and goes.  A thief comes and takes what you have and you discover it later.This is discipline for being negative.Before you know it the roof comes down around your ears and you are in a world of hurt.  Wickedness sown, harvests wickedness many times over.


Christ can come with judgment on you in many forms.In most forms you remain alive and have an opportunity to recover and get back with your Bible study program.In some cases, if your time is up, then death overtakes you and there is no opportunity to recover.  Your suffering and misery will be finished on this earth, but you will have lost your opportunity to advance in your spiritual life and be qualified for those additional rewards in heaven in eternity.


Waking up, is getting back to the study of truth and restarting your spiritual life.The people of the Sardis church have gone negative.  They got away from their daily studies, and they got away from their Christian heritage and principles.


Their daily spiritual life had closed down and they were on the verge of losing all of their spiritual rewards, that they once had possession of.


So, John uses these expressions to get back on track, to wake up, become alert again, in your spiritual life as you once were.


Otherwise, when does a thief come?  At a time when you least expect it.  If the thief always came when you expected it, he would be caught every time.But good thieves, come when you do not expect it, when you are unaware, when you are not prepared. 


And for those who ignore their spiritual growth, they risk being unprepared, when Christ calls them home.  That could be in death or in the Rapture.Whichever it is, is irrelevant.If you are unprepared and caught off guard, then you lose it all, all of your extra future blessings that you could have had, if only you were more conscientious about growing up in your spiritual life by means of a daily study.


None of us know when God will call us home, therefore, we are to make certain that we study daily and learn and grow up, so that when that day comes, we will be prepared and we will confidently secure in our future reward, as Christ has promised.


So long as you are alive here on this earth, you always have the opportunity to continue or recover your spiritual advance.  It is only after you leave this world that recovery is no longer available.



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Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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