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1 Thessalonians 5:5

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Ye are all the children of light - Ye are children of God, and enjoy both his light and life. Ye are Christians - ye belong to him who has brought life and immortality to light by his Gospel. This dispensation, under which ye are, has illustrated all the preceding dispensations; in its light all is become luminous; and ye, who walked formerly in heathen ignorance, or in the darkness of Jewish prejudices, are now light in the Lord, because ye have believed in him who is the light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory and splendor of his people Israel.

We are not of the night, nor of darkness - Our actions are such as we are not afraid to expose to the fullest and clearest light. Sinners hate the light; they are enemies to knowledge; they love darkness; they will not receive instructions; and their deeds are such as cannot bear the light.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Ye are all the children of light - All who are Christians. The phrase” children of light” is a Hebraism, meaning that they were the enlightened children of God.

And the children of the day - Who live as if light always shone round about them. The meaning is, that in reference to the coming of the Lord they are as people would be in reference to the coming of a thief, if there were no night and no necessity of slumber. They would always be wakeful and active, and it would be impossible to come upon them by surprise. Christians are always to be wakeful and vigilant; they are so to expect the coming of the Redeemer, that he will not find them off their guard, and will not come upon them by surprise.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
It is needless or useless to ask about the particular time of Christ's coming. Christ did not reveal this to the apostles. There are times and seasons for us to work in, and these are our duty and interest to know and observe; but as to the time when we must give up our account, we know it not, nor is it needful that we should. The coming of Christ will be a great surprise to men. Our Lord himself said so. As the hour of death is the same to each person that the judgment will be to mankind in general, so the same remarks answer for both. Christ's coming will be terrible to the ungodly. Their destruction will overtake them while they dream of happiness, and please themselves with vain amusements. There will be no means to escape the terror or the punishment of that day. This day will be a happy day to the righteous. They are not in darkness; they are the children of the light. It is the happy condition of all true Christians. But how many are speaking peace and safety to themselves, over whose heads utter destruction is hovering! Let us endeavour to awaken ourselves and each other, and guard against our spiritual enemies.
Ellen G. White
Lift Him Up, 266.3

It is by carrying out in our lives the pure principles of the gospel of Christ that we honor and glorify our Father, who is in heaven. When we are doing this, we are reflecting Heaven-given light upon the dark world around us. Sinners will be constrained to confess that we are not the children of darkness, but the children of light. How shall they know this? By the fruits we bear. Men may have their names upon the church book; but that does not make them children of light. They may hold honorable positions and receive the praise of men; but that does not make them children of light.... There must be a deep work of grace—the love of God in the heart, and this love is expressed by obedience. LHU 266.3

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Ellen G. White
Our High Calling, 296.4

True Christians are a savor of life unto life, because Christ abides in their hearts. Reflecting His image, they are children of the light. OHC 296.4

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Ellen G. White
Selected Messages Book 3, 150.1

Some seem to feel that they must be on probation and must prove to the Lord that they are reformed before they can claim his blessing. But these dear souls may claim the blessing of God even now. They must have his grace, the spirit of Christ to help their infirmities, or they cannot form Christian characters. Jesus loves to have us come to Him just as we are—sinful, helpless, dependent. We claim to be children of the light, not of the night nor of darkness; what right have we to be unbelieving?—The Review and Herald, April 22, 1884. 3SM 150.1

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Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 1, 404

A profession of Christianity without corresponding faith and works will avail nothing. No man can serve two masters. The children of the wicked one are their own master's servants; to whom they yield themselves servants to obey, his servants they are, and they cannot be the servants of God until they renounce the devil and all his works. It cannot be harmless for servants of the heavenly King to engage in the pleasures and amusements which Satan's servants engage in, even though they often repeat that such amusements are harmless. God has revealed sacred and holy truths to separate His people from the ungodly and purify them unto Himself. Seventh-day Adventists should live out their faith. Those who obey the Ten Commandments view the state of the world and religious things from a standpoint altogether different from that of professors who are lovers of pleasure, who shun the cross, and live in violation of the fourth commandment. In the present state of things in society it is no easy task for parents to restrain their children and instruct them according to the Bible rule of right. Professors of religion have so departed from the word of God that when His people return to His sacred word, and would train their children according to its precepts, and like Abraham of old command their households after them, the poor children with such an influence around them think their parents unnecessarily exacting and overcareful in regard to their associates. They naturally desire to follow the example of worldly, pleasure-loving professors. 1T 404.1

In these days, persecution and reproach for Christ's sake are scarcely known. Very little self-denial and sacrifice is necessary in order to put on a form of godliness and have the name upon the church book; but to live in such a manner that our ways will be pleasing to God, and our names registered in the book of life, will require watchfulness and prayer, self-denial and sacrifice on our part. Professed Christians are no example for the youth, only as far as they follow Christ. Right actions are unmistakable fruits of true godliness. The Judge of all the earth will give everyone according to his works. Children who follow Christ have a warfare before them; they have a daily cross to bear in coming out from the world and being separate, and imitating the life of Christ. 1T 405.1

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