1 Thessalonians

God’s Grace for God’s People

1 Thessalonians 5:25-28
Paul wraps up his letter to the church at Thessalonica with three particular instructions and a very important prayer. While the three instructions are specific to the situation in which they were given, they nevertheless tell God’s people today some important things about prayer, fellowship, and scripture. and the closing touches on the very heart, not only of this letter, but also of the whole Biblical storyline itself.

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A Vertical Reorientation

1 Thessalonians 5:16-24
Paul’s instructions turn now from our relationships between each other, to focus on our relationship to Him. Through these, we see the very grace and love of God as manifested in His insistence that we regularly and completely reorient the attentions of our hearts to Him.

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Divine Greatness in Human Reconciliation

1 Thessalonians 5:15
The history of the human race, the overall character of societies, and our own everyday experience all show how singularly unable we are to get along with one another for long. Offense builds on offense, and relationships decay into strife. In examining God’s commandment not only to abstain from vengeance, but positively to seek out the good for everyone, we come face to face with the very character of God, how and why he commands such a radical transformation in us, and how such an impossible change comes to pass.

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The Church Under the Smile of God

1 Thessalonians 5:11-15
From an American, democratically-oriented standpoint, the issue of authority is sometimes a touchy one. This section of Paul’s letter expounds the relationships between leaders in the local church and those they serve. We also see some very important things about the mutual interaction of God’s people, and how these two work properly together, so that God’s people may display His glory by living life and flourishing under His loving smile.

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What Do You Know That’s Good?

1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
There is a place in the Christian life for the Bible’s teachings about Christ’s second coming, but what is that place? Moreover, what isn’t it? From this text, we will look at His purpose for us is in regard to the coming, climactic event of our Lord’s return, what He has taught us about it, and what bearing it has on us and on the world today.

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Excel Still More (Part 2)

1 Thessalonians 4:9-12
The believers in Thessalonica were so taught by God to love one another that their love spilled over from their city to the brothers and sisters in their whole region. Nevertheless, Paul urged them to even greater heights of obedience by encouraging them in the area of work. What does the Bible have to say to us today about a proper theology of work? What does the Gospel stand to correct in our own age’s fallen view of this aspect of life?

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Excel Still More (Part 1)

1 Thessalonians 4:1-8
Having complemented, encouraged, and prayed for his loved ones in Thessalonica, Paul moves on to applications of the Gospel in the lives of believers. In this section of the letter, we look at the ramifications of God’s call to holiness in the realm of sexuality, and the motivations and means by which the Spirit enables our obedience, both in singleness and in marriage.

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The Humility of Biblical Boasting

1 Thessalonians 2:17-20; 1 Thessalonians 3:1-13
The Bible has quite a bit to say about boasting, but not all of it is bad. The Scriptures in general stand in marked challenge to our culture’s views of pride and humility, and this passage of Paul’s letter to the church at Thessalonica gives insight into the proper place of boasting in the humility to which God calls all people–leaders, followers, believers in general, and even unbelievers.

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