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Category: Bible Study (page 11 of 25)

Theology of 2 Thessalonians–Counted Worthy by Enduring

This fits into several categories of thought.  It fits in with our recent series on Suffering and the Existence of God (click here).  It fits in with our 2nd Thessalonians series (click here).   Finally, it is a good start to the theology of 2nd Thessalonians series.

This has to do with an important phrase in 2 Thessalonians 1:

We ourselves speak proudly of you among the churches of God for your perseverance and faith in the midst of all your persecutions and afflictions which you endure.  5This is a plain indication of God’s righteous judgment so that you will be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which indeed you are suffering.

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Overview of 2 Thessalonians

The letter known as Second Thessalonians was written to the Macedonian church established by Paul in the Greek city of Thessalonica in Acts 17. Paul wrote the first letter when Timothy arrived with the news that the Thessalonians had not given up their faith under the pressure of Jewish persecution. He rejoiced in their faithfulness and thanked God for their continued Christian walk. He encouraged them with hope in the Lord’s coming and encouraged them to live Christian lives.

In the second letter, he thanks God again that their faith is growing more and more and they continue to persevere (1:3-4). The greater portion of the second letter centers around the matter of the Lord’s return and the behavior of the people relative to that return.

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Instructions to the Church–2 Thessalonians 3:13-18

Paul has just finished strongly commanding men who are walking disorderly. His instruction was clear:  they need to get jobs (read here).  Now Paul turns his attention to the church.  Paul gives three instructions to the church concerning their response to men who are not willing to work:

1.  Do not grow weary in well-doing. Since Paul was very strong in his past section, he does not want the church to go too far.  It is true that they are not to feed a man who refuses to work, but that does not mean that they stop doing good works.  They should still help those with legitimate needs.  One specific need that would arise is the feeding of the wife and children of lazy men.

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How to be Filled with the Spirit?

This weekend I lead a retreat.  The theme was Be Filled!.  We spent our time answering the question of How One Leads a Spirit-Filled Life?  We look at false alternatives, which I want get in to, but the bulk of our time was spent on what we do to be Spirit filled.

Our text was Ephesians 5:18-21.  I did not get this in-depth during the retreat (I mean it is a retreat), but the Greek construction on this sentence is important.  Verse 18 provides a command:  Be filled with the Spirit.  This command is followed by a series of participles (these are usually words ending in “ing” in the English text).  Now the function of this construction is that the participles tell us how to perform the command.  Thus the following “ing” words tell us how we are filled with the Spirit.

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Honest Evangelism

I think sometimes as Christians we present the gospel as if it is some magic solution to all of life’s problems.  Now I do believe the gospel solves all of life’s problems, but not in the simplistic, materialistic way it is often presented.  Obedience to the gospel does not mean we will live easy lives with nice houses and big cars. It does not insulate us from the troubles of this world.  Instead of presenting the gospel in this way, I think we need to add at least these three truths:

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