Ye are sons of light, and sons of day … so then do not let us sleep as the rest do. (1 Thessalonians 5:5-6)


God knows exactly what we are, He knows every thought, every motive, and nothing is or can be hidden from Him. In this assurance the child of God walks; he knows God is looking into his heart, and sees all things. He does not fear the look of God, who is light—he is glad of it. All that he is in himself, his God knows, and he is aware that he can never take God by surprise by what he does, because God knows what he is, though very often he is a wonder of evil to himself. There is not the thinnest veil between him and God, nor yet a single step which he can ever take away from the eye of God. We have eternal life, the life of God; God dwells in us, and we in God; He has given us of His Spirit, so that it is ours—poor, weak, feeble, and, in our own selves, sinful creatures as we are—to be found practically walking as those who are in the light.

Scripture never tells anyone to exercise activity in that to which he does not belong. It does not bid dead men walk, or children of darkness to do the works of the sons of light; legalism is not consistent with the revelation of God that He is light, but Scripture exhorts us to act as what we are, “Ye are sons of light.”

Sleeping and walking do not naturally go together. In the reality of divine things the mechanical action of sleepwalking is unknown. We do not say that there is not sleepwalking at times among the children of God, for, alas, there is a sad amount of formalism, and performance of religious observance, which may well go by such a description; and any religious observance may be turned into formalism. Let us see to it that we are real, and, because we do not belong to the night, let us not sleep as do others.

H. F. Witherby