Jan 2, 2022. II Thessalonians 1:1-8

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FAITH UNDER PRESSURE. II Thessalonians 1:1-8. 01/02/2022. #01.

2 Thessalonians 1:1-8 [New King James Version]

1 Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other, 4 so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, 5 which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer; 6 since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, 7 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, 8 in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

  1. Paul’s greeting
    1. A different greeting than to the Cor. or Gal. churches
      1.  Both Cor. and Gal. had significant problems
      1.  Paul is thrilled with growth of the Thessalonians believers while they were under great pressure
      1.  The Thessalonians church was a great joy in Paul’s life
    1. Paul thanks God for the faith and love of the Thessalonians church
      1.  Fitting (proper, appropriate) to praise God
      1.  God gives the faith and love that we must choose to exercise (God is source of all things holy)
    1. Jn. 15:5 we must utilize the tools God gives us
      1.  God does not force us to exercise faith or love
      1.  2 Cor. 10:3-5 all the tools we need to live holy lives have been given to us
  2. Amazing spirituality
    1. Paul was thrilled with the Thessalonians faith for 4 reasons:
      1.  He was able to teach the Thessalonians for 3 weeks before he was forced out of Thessalonica (Acts 17)
      1.  They were under great persecution
      1.  They suffered much, but their faith grew
      1.  Other churches with far more advantages did not show as much spiritual maturity
    1. A great testimony that Thessalonians fully embraced Paul’s teaching and dedicated themselves totally to Christ
      1.  Holiness is up to the believer
      1.  God gives us all we need to embrace Christ
    1. Paul cites their faith, patience, and love for each other
    1. Paul boasted to other churches about the Thessalonians church
      1.  Not to Thessalonians’ glory, but to God’s
      1.  Spirituality is available to all who seek it
    1. Faith = belief and trust
      1.  The level of faith is determined by how much we reject our desires and embrace the will of God
      1.  Those of little faith pursue selfish things and crumble under the least amount of opposition
      1.  Those of great faith love God, His Word, worship, service, witness, and other believers
    1. Patience (lit., “to remain under”, forbear, longsuffering) = to remain faithful and Christ-like even when tried and persecuted for the sake of Christ
      1.  Not striking back or losing heart
      1.  Refusing to quit or compromise
    1. Love for one another = choosing to cherish, sacrifice for, and support fellow believers
      1.  Support of other believers provides comfort
      1.  1 JN. 4:7-19 love for the brethren perseveres through suffering, hardship, trials, and persecution
      1.  The Thessalonians supported each other in hard times
  3. The end of it all
    1. God will trouble those who trouble believers
      1.  This does not happen immediately
      1.  Part of faith is trusting in the judgment of God
    1. Rm. 12:19 we are not to avenge ourselves
      1.  Acts 1:8 we seek to see the lost saved
      1.  Vengeance will come on those rejecting Christ
    1. Comfort in faith that justice will be meted out
      1.  Judgment upon the rebellious is just and right
      1.  The Tribulation is just retribution (unlike corrupt man, God does not ignore evil)
    1. The just will rest with the saints before God
      1.  Our suffering is brief, but our rest is eternal
      1.  There is comfort in anticipating our great rest
      1.  End judgment on lost and tranquility for saved should provide us both comfort and strength
    1. American believers have suffered far less persecution than most other believers in history (grace of God)
      1.  Persecution will increase as we go forward
      1.  God will give all strength that we need
    1. Flaming vengeance by God on his enemies
    1. The forward looking believer will never back down

Key Verse: 1 John 4:7-19

7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 9 In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us. 13 By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. 17 Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. 19 We love [a]Him because He first loved us.