Today’s reading is a discourse between Paul and the Church in Thessalonica. He urged and encouraged them as a father would to live a life that corresponds with God’s kingdom mentality as He together with Silas and Timothy keeps thanking God that they accepted the message of the gospel. He mentioned their firm stance in God to the point of enduring persecution from their countrymen because of the word of God as their brothers in Judea who are also Christians suffered. He mentioned he had to stay away from them due to circumstances beyond His control even though He desired to see them. He went further to explain He sent Timothy to them because of His longing to see them and concern because of the persecutions they faced.
Paul found comfort knowing the people were firm and doing well in their faith in God. He expressed this by telling them how glad He is to hear of their exploits because of their continuous love and trust in God. Whilst hoping to see them soon as He prayed the Lord would strengthen their love and commitment to Him.
In the midst of serious opposition and trials; Paul, Silas and Timothy were concerned and focused on other matters. While there were ongoing conflicts and contradictions around them, they focused on encouraging other Christians in the faith. We as believers need to take a stand in Christ while trusting the Lord will grant us all round victory. Purpose prevails beyond trials. The word is the only suitable Anchor to a life of purpose.
I choose to live a life of Purpose.
Reading – 1 Thessalonians 2:12- 3:13
12 encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and glory.
13 And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is indeed at work in you who believe. 14 For you, brothers and sisters, became imitators of God’s churches in Judea, which are in Christ Jesus: You suffered from your own people the same things those churches suffered from the Jews15 who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out. They displease God and are hostile to everyone 16 in their effort to keep us from speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved. In this way they always heap up their sins to the limit. The wrath of God has come upon them at last.[a]
Paul’s Longing to See the Thessalonians
17 But, brothers and sisters, when we were orphaned by being separated from you for a short time (in person, not in thought), out of our intense longing we made every effort to see you. 18 For we wanted to come to you—certainly I, Paul, did, again and again—but Satan blocked our way. 19 For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you?20 Indeed, you are our glory and joy.
3 So when we could stand it no longer, we thought it best to be left by ourselves in Athens. 2 We sent Timothy, who is our brother and co-worker in God’s service in spreading the gospel of Christ, to strengthen and encourage you in your faith, 3 so that no one would be unsettled by these trials. For you know quite well that we are destined for them. 4 In fact, when we were with you, we kept telling you that we would be persecuted. And it turned out that way, as you well know. 5 For this reason, when I could stand it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith. I was afraid that in some way the tempter had tempted you and that our labors might have been in vain.
Timothy’s Encouraging Report
6 But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love. He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and that you long to see us, just as we also long to see you. 7 Therefore, brothers and sisters, in all our distress and persecution we were encouraged about you because of your faith. 8 For now we really live, since you are standing firm in the Lord. 9 How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you? 10 Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith.
11 Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus clear the way for us to come to you. 12 May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.13 May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones.
- 1 Thessalonians 2:16 Or them fully