1 Thessalonians 5:8 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Thessalonians 5:8, NIV: But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.

1 Thessalonians 5:8, ESV: But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation.

1 Thessalonians 5:8, KJV: But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.

1 Thessalonians 5:8, NASB: But since we are of the day, let’s be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet, the hope of salvation.

1 Thessalonians 5:8, NLT: But let us who live in the light be clearheaded, protected by the armor of faith and love, and wearing as our helmet the confidence of our salvation.

1 Thessalonians 5:8, CSB: But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled and put on the armor of faith and love, and a helmet of the hope of salvation.

What does 1 Thessalonians 5:8 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul has discussed the imminent, abrupt rapture (1 Thessalonians 4:13–18) and how Christians ought to live, given that truth. In the prior verse, Paul noted that sleep and drunkenness are typically associated with the night, and both lead a person to be careless and unaware. Since believers are "children of light, children of the day," we ought to be aware and self-controlled, instead (1 Thessalonians 5:5–7).

In view of the fact that Paul's readers belong to the day, he summons them to practice self-discipline and to act like soldiers. He calls upon them to wear the breastplate of faith and love. A soldier's breastplate offered protection for his chest. The breastplate of faith and love protects Christians. Faith and love for God and others guards our hearts. These two qualities give us courage to face the enemy and grace to share God's love with others.

Paul also appeals to his readers to wear a helmet—the hope of salvation. A firm anticipation of being completely delivered from sin's influence and presence at the rapture protects our minds. We do not succumb to the Devil's attacks on our thinking if we wear the helmet of salvation. In 2 Corinthians 11:3 Paul charges the Devil with deceiving Eve, expressing concern that Satan might distract the Corinthians' minds from "a sincere and pure devotion to Christ."