2 Thessalonians 1:1-4 Is your faith growing more and more each day?

 

2 Thessalonians 1:1-4 Bible Study and Commentary

Last time we finished 1 Thessalonians chapter 5 where Paul talked about Jesus taking his church out of this world before wrath and tribulation comes to this world. He talked about the fact that we can’t know when this will happen, but that we should live with the expectancy that it will happen.

 

Questions:

Is your faith growing more and more each day?

Do you know more about Jesus each day?

Have you mastered the lessons that God is trying to teach you?

 

Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:

Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth;

So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure:

 

So this is the second letter to the church at Thessalonica.  Paul writes this letter only a few months after the first letter.  If you recall, the church in Thessalonica was a model church.  Paul said that they were doing what God had asked them to do.  Paul commended them for their work of faith, their labor of love, and their patience and endurance as they anticipated the Lord’s return.  Many people think that others had wrongly instructed the church and Paul needs to correct a few things.  In this chapter, there seems to be some confusion about if they are living in the last days.  They are suffering persecution and are in difficult times, and they are wondering if they missed the Lord’s return and if  they are already in the tribulation period.

So the letter starts by saying that Paul, Silas, and Timothy are together and are sending this letter.  Paul says that the church is in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  In other words the church belongs to God, and you should remember this.

Paul hopes God will continue to show them favor or grace, and give them peace.  As we talked about in 1 Thessalonians chapter 1, there are two types of peace.  Peace with God and the peace of God.  We have peace with God because of what Christ did on the cross.  Romans 5:1 tells us that since we have been justified by faith in Jesus and what he did for us on the cross, that we have peace with God.  In other words you aren’t an enemy of God.  The peace of God is what we can have that this world doesn’t understand.  This is described in Philippians 4:7, where the peace of God passes all understanding.

In order to have peace with God, and experience the peace of God, we must have been saved by Grace.  Grace always precedes peace.

In verse 3 Paul said that he was bound to always give thanks to God for what?

He didn’t give thanks because they had the best programs, or the best music, or the most people, or the best building, or even their pastor….

But Paul gives thanks for their faith was growing exceedingly and their love for each other and others outside the church was abounding or overflowing.

He was obligated to give thanks to God, because God is the one working in them.  This is a very important part of this letter.  It is important for the church, that is being persecuted, to understand that God is working in and through them.  It is also important that the church understands that others are thankful for what the church is doing.

Would Paul be obligated to give thanks to God for your faith?

Would Paul be obligated to give thanks to God for your church?

How do you know they had a genuine faith?

They had…

 

  • Faith that kept growing under trials
  • Love that kept growing under trials
  • Endurance that kept growing under trials

 

Is your faith growing more and more each day?

Do you know more about Jesus each day?

Are you growing in your knowledge of him?

 

Paul even goes as far to say that he received glory for what the church is doing and especially for their patience or longsuffering concerning the persecutions and tribulations that they are going through.  Although God is the one who is working in the lives of each believer and is the one that should get the glory, Paul also knows that God worked through his life in order to start the church, and to continue to instruct the church.  We ultimately want to give God all the glory, but we also should realize that we should be happy that God is using us to fulfill his plans and purpose.

Paul said that they endured the persecution and tribulation.  The word endured means more than just getting through the difficult times.  It means they mastered the situation.  They meet each difficulty as a challenge knowing that it will make them stronger in the Lord.  Each step they master brings them closer to Jesus.  Sometimes the Lord allows difficult times to come into our lives.  The purpose is to make us more like Christ and to learn a lesson.  Sometimes we fail to learn the lesson and will end up having to repeat the process.  It is best to ask in difficult times, “Lord what are you trying to teach me”.    Sometimes we pray for the Lord to take care of the situation, and that is enough.  Sometimes he responds and wants us to do something.  In those moments, do what He asks.

We know that faith, hope and love are guiding principles of a Christian.  I believe these people had faith and love because of the hope they had in Christ.  The Lord’s return and the fact that we will be with him for eternity, should change the way see things and do things now on earth.

Let God teach you, obey what he says, and then you will master the lesson.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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