April 11 reading
1 Thessalonians 1-5
|Bible Study Aids and
1 Thessalonians Commentary
* 1 Thessalonians, Google
* 1 Thess, TextWeek|
1 Thessalonians Commentary 1 and 2, Chuck Smith
|PROMISE: "For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever." (4:16-17)|
|Thought for today: Who is chosen? Those who have heard the gospel with words, seen the gospel with power, with the Holy Spirit, and with deep conviction, and those who imitate the Lord through suffering with joy from the Holy Spirit, modeling the gospel message yourselves. (from 1:4-7)|
This letter to encourage the church at Thessalonica, Greece, is by Paul, Silas, and Timothy. Paul founded the church there during his second missionary journey (Acts 17:1-9).
How did Paul know these Thessalonians were chosen by God? From reading Genesis, Exodus, Ezekiel, and Revelation, we know that God uses marks on people similarly to how the Hebrews marked their doorposts at the Passover. Ezekiel 9:4 says that the LORD had an angel mark people grieving over the detestable things done in Jerusalem. The angels coming to destroy evil people watched for the mark, not trusting their own eyes. Similarly, believers are marked as they hear the gospel and respond to it positively, not only with repeating the words, but with power, with the Holy Spirit, and with deep conviction. Suffering comes with faith in the Lord's gospel, and joy comes from the Holy Spirit. The suffering comes from opposition - from those who reject God's plan for man - not from God's wrath. The joy comes from knowing you've changed and turned away from idols to the living and true God, to serve and please Him, not other men. You hear and enter into the gospel, see how Paul lived, and realize that God's word is at work in you also. You realize that people who oppose the gospel and don't want to let you hear and learn it, are heaping sins upon themselves. You realize that people who love the gospel encourage you, and need encouraging themselves as they also go through trials from unbelievers. Persecution comes with faith. We are destined for trials. So encouraging each other is vital.
How shall we pray? May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as Paul's did for the Thessalonians. May the Lord 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.
How shall we live? Keep living to please God, more and more. Keep learning what God's will is. (4:3-8; 5:16-18) Actively practice brotherly love, and learn to control your own body over immorality. Lead a quiet life - mind your own business - work with your hands. In this way of earning your own living, you'll also earn the respect of outsiders.
How shall we encourage each other? Death is not going to defeat you. The Lord Jesus Christ is coming for the dead in Christ and for any believers still alive. People will lie about peace and safety, but you will know when the secret time is near - you just will. Be alert and self-controlled, with faith, love, and hope at the forefront of your life. What we suffer is not God's wrath. Jesus died for us so that awake or asleep we may live together with him. Respect those over you in the Lord, even their admonitions. Our response to being wronged is not revenge but kindness, patience, joy, prayer, giving thanks, testing everything, holding on to good, avoiding evil. (5:12-22) These responses don't come naturally. Practice them. Learn them.
May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful - He will do it!
|Tomorrow's reading: Ruth 1-4 with Commentary|
|1 THESS. | Ruth | 1 Samuel | 2 THESSALONIANS | 2 Samuel | 1 Timothy|
|Date||Scriptures||Daily devotional commentary|
April 13-21: 1 Samuel|
|April 22:||2 Thessalonians 1-3 and 2 Samuel 1-3|| Why God's People Suffer &
Fighting For The Promise|
Apr 22-30: 2 Samuel |
Today's Bible commentaries, mostly by Don and Nancy Sween, were first posted daily on the Today's Bible Commentary Blog from November 2003