Aug 22, 2021. I Thessalonians 3:6-13

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GOOD REPORT.  I Thessalonians 3:6-13.  8/22/2021.  #7.

I Thessalonians 3:6-13 [New King James Version]

6 But now that Timothy has come to us from you, and brought us good news of your faith and love, and that you always have good remembrance of us, greatly desiring to see us, as we also to see you— 7 therefore, brethren, in all our affliction and distress we were comforted concerning you by your faith. 8 For now we live, if you stand fast in the Lord. 9 For what thanks can we render to God for you, for all the joy with which we rejoice for your sake before our God, 10 night and day praying exceedingly that we may see your face and perfect what is lacking in your faith? 11 Now may our God and Father Himself, and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way to you. 12 And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you, 13 so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints.

  1. Timothy brings good news
    1. Timothy had finally returned from Thessalonians
      1.  They were still holding onto their faith & love
      1.  They remembered Paul fondly & desired to see him again
    1. Timothy’s news was like a balm over Paul’s anxiety
      1.  Proverbs 25:25 refreshed by good news from afar
      1.  Paul had expected the worse, but received a great blessing
      1.  The news lightened their affliction since the fruit of their labor was worth the price paid
    1. The fruit of faithfully serving the Lord is worth any price
      1.  Trials at the time may seem overwhelming, but the reward of service is far greater (1 Corinthians 3)
      1.  We will not know the full impact of our service to the Lord until we stand before the Lord
      1.  Paul was allowed to see a glimpse of the result of his labor when Timothy returned to him
    1. The thought of the reward for the fruit of our labor should comfort us despite evil around us (I Corinthians 15:50-58)
      1.  Faith remembrance makes us immoveable
      1.  The power of hope of reward strengthens us
    1. Paul rejoices in what God did in 3 weeks in Thess.
  2. Thankful & Hopeful
    1. Paul was thankful to the Lord, for he knew that the short time he had with the Thessalonians was not enough to fortify them
      1.  The Spirit of God used what Paul gave them & magnified its impact & power
      1.  God had put a hedge around the new believers
    1. Paul had underpinned the new church with continual prayer (not to be underestimated or minimized)
    1. Paul still wanted to return to complete the Thessalonians training
      1.  There is no indication that Paul was ever able to return to the city
      1.  Paul tried to fill in the gap through his 2 letters to them & sending Timothy to help them
    1. Paul prayed that the Lord would direct him to the Thessalonians
      1.  Some prayers are not answered because God has a different plan
      1.  Some prayers are not answered because we take a side trip off the path God lays out for us (Paul’s defiance of God’s command not to go to Jerusalem may have prevented him from seeing the Thessalonians and other churches again, just like Moses’s disobedience stopped his entry into Canaan)
  3. Growing in faith until the trumpet sounds
    1. Paul also prayed that their love and holiness would continue to grow
      1.  Once Paul no longer could directly influence the Thessalonians, he had to leave them totally in God’s care
      1.  All our teaching & training must end & we then leave rests in God’s care & responses of trainees
    1. Paul looks forward to when the Lord comes
      1.  There will be an accounting of both our ministry and of those who received our ministry
      1.  Paul couldn’t hover over seedlings he planted
      1.  Our impact will be seen when Lord returns
    1. Paul could encourage & pray for Thessalonians, then wait for results

Part of faith is trusting the Lord with the results