1 Thessalonians 1
God the Holy Spirit brings joy to our hearts
1 Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 2 We always give thanks to God for you all, mentioning you in our prayers, 3 remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father, 4 knowing, brothers, beloved of God, your election.
- God sees our lives. He selected us.
- Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.
- 1 Peter 1:2 Selected according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ.5.For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance, as you know what kind of men we were among you for your sake. 6.And you became followers of us and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Spirit, 7. so that you became examples to all in Macedonia and Achaia who believe. 8.For from you the word of the Lord has sounded forth, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place. Your faith toward God has gone out, so that we do not need to say anything.
- Matthew 28:18-19 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. 19.Go therefore, and teach all nations…
- John 10:27-28 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: 28.And I give unto them eternal life; and they will never perish. Neither will any man pluck them out of my hand.
- Psalm 16:11 In your presence is fullness of joy and at your right hand pleasures for evermore.
Our God is the true and living God
He raised Jesus from the dead
He delivers us from the wrath to come
9 For they themselves declare concerning us what manner of entry we had to you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10 and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.
- Psalm 96:5 For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.
- 1Thessalonians 4:16-17 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God: and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17.Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so we will ever be with the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 2
He calls us into His kingdom and glory
1 For you yourselves know, brothers, that our coming to you was not for nothing. 2 But even after we had suffered before and were spitefully treated at Philippi, as you know, we were bold in our God to speak to you the gospel of God in much conflict. 3 For our exhortation did not come from error or uncleanness, nor was it in deceit. 4 But as we have been approved by God to be trusted with the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who tests our hearts.
- Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that comes to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of those that diligently seek him.
5 For as you know, we never came with flattering speech or a cloak for covetousness-- God is witness. 6 Nor did we seek glory from men, either from you or from others, when we might have made demands as apostles of Christ. 7 But we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children. 8 So, affectionately longing for you, we were well pleased to impart to you not only the good news of God, but also our own lives, because you had become dear to us.
- The gospel is the best news that man has ever had or will have.
- Our creator loves us, died for our sins, offers to share all that He is and has with us.
9 For brothers, you remember our labor and toil; laboring night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, we preached to you the gospel of God. 10 You are witnesses, and God also, how devoutly and justly and blamelessly we behaved ourselves among you who believe: 11 just as you know how we exhorted, and comforted, and charged every one of you, as a father does his own children, 12 that you walk worthy of God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.
- Psalm 50:1 The mighty God, even the LORD, has spoken, and called the earth from the rising of the sun unto the going down of it.
13 For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe. 14 For you, brothers, became imitators of the churches of God that are in Judea in Christ Jesus. For you also suffered the same things from your own countrymen, just as they did from the Judeans, 15 who killed both the Lord Jesus and their own prophets, and have persecuted us/chased us away; and they do not please God and are contrary to all men, 16 forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they may be saved, as always, to fill up the measure of their sins; but wrath has come upon them to the uttermost. 17 But we, brothers, having been taken away from you for a short time in presence, not in heart, endeavored more eagerly to see your face with great desire. 18 Therefore we wanted to come to you, even I, Paul, time and again, but Satan hindered us. 19 For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Is it not even you in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His coming? 20 For you are our glory and joy.
- Isaiah 40:10-12 Behold, the Lord GOD will come with strong hand, and his arm will rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him. 11.He will feed his flock like a shepherd: he will gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and will gently lead those that are with young. 12.Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and measured out heaven with the span, and measured the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?
1 Thessalonians 3
1 So when we could no longer bear it, we thought it good to be left at Athens alone. 2 And sent Timothy, our brother and minister of God, and our fellow laborer in the good news of Christ, to establish you, and to comfort you concerning your faith: 3 that no man be moved by these afflictions: for you know that we are appointed to this.
- Isaiah 63:9 In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; and he bare them, and carried them all the days of old.
- Hebrews 13:5 Let your life be without covetousness; and be content with what you have: for he has said, I will never leave you, nor forsake you.
4 For truly, when we were with you, we told you before that we would suffer tribulation; even as it came to pass, and you know. 5 For this reason, when I could no longer bear it, I sent to know of your faith, lest by some means the tempter has tempted you, and our labor is in vain.
- 1 Peter 1:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perishes, though it is tested with fire, might be found to praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.
6 But when Timothy came from you to us, and brought us good news of your faith and love, and that you always think well of us, greatly desiring to see us, as we also to see you: 7 Therefore, brothers, we were comforted by your faith in all our affliction and distress: 8 For now we live, if you stand fast in the Lord.
- If we desire greatly to see one another, how much more God who gave us this great love desires to see us.
He directs our way
He makes us increase and abound
He is coming
9 For what thanks can we render to God again for you, for all the joy with which we rejoice for your sakes before our God; 10 night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might complete what is lacking in your faith?11 Now God himself and our Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way to you. 12 And the Lord make you increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you: 13 to the end he may establish your hearts without blame in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
- Romans 10:17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
- 1Peter 5:10 But the God of all grace, who has called us to his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, make you perfect, establish, strengthen, settle you.
- Matthew 25:31 When the Son of man will come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then he will sit upon the throne of his glory
1 Thessalonians 4
God has called us to holiness
1 Furthermore, we urge you, brothers, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, as you have received from us instruction regarding how you ought to walk to please God, so that you abound more and more. 2 You know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. 3 For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that you abstain from fornication: 4 that every one of you know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor.
- Sanctification means to be set apart to God.
- 1 Peter 2:9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a special people; set to show the praises of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvelous light
God avenges defrauding
5 Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles who do not know God: 6that no man go beyond and defraud his brother in the matter: because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we have forewarned you and testified.
- Concupiscence is powerful feelings of physical desire and longing for forbidden things.
- God made sex for man’s good, but when sex becomes the focus rather than God, life is out of balance.
- This distortion of life leads to dissatisfaction, then sin, then perversion.
- Leviticus 18 details the perversions forbidden by God.
- These things cannot fulfill man.
- The body is just the house that the soul lives in.
- Man was made in the image of God for a relationship with God that fulfills the soul.
- This passage is speaking of defrauding a brother.
- You avoid this by avoiding fornication (in verse 3).
- Mates other than yours belong to someone else.
- God didn’t make one gigantic free for all.
- He made specific mates for each person. If she isn’t your mate, she belongs to someone else.
- Ezekiel 3:18 When I say to the wicked, You will surely die; and you do not warn him or speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man will die in his iniquity; but I will require his blood at your hand.
7 For God has not called us to uncleanness, but to holiness. 8 Therefore he that rejects this, does not despise man, but God, who has also given us his Holy Spirit. 9 Now regarding brotherly love, you do not need me to write to you: for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another. 10 And indeed you do it toward all the brothers that are in all Macedonia: but we urge you, brothers, that you excel still more; 11 and that you study to be quiet, and do your own business, and work with your own hands, as we commanded you; 12 that you walk honestly toward those that are outside (the faith), and that you have need of nothing.
- 1 Peter 3:4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is of great price in the sight of God.
The Lord is going to call us up to meet Him in the air
13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brothers, concerning those that are asleep, that you not sorrow as others who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so those who sleep in Jesus, God will bring with him. 15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain to the coming of the Lord will not precede those who are asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God: and the dead in Christ will rise first: 17 then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so we will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.
- Trumpets were the command system for battle until 1942. God is so powerful that He doesn’t need spaceships. In view of what is coming we need to keep our eyes on things above.
- 1Corinthians 15:51 Behold, I show you a mystery; We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet: for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then will be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
- 1John 2:28 And now, little children, abide in him; so that when he appears, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.
1 Thessalonians 5
The day of the Lord comes suddenly and unexpectedly
1 But about the times and the seasons, brothers, you do not need me to write to you. 2 For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord comes as a thief in the night. 3 For when they say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains on a woman with child; and they will not escape. 4 But you, brothers, are not in darkness, so that that day should overtake you like a thief.
- Jeremiah 46:10 For this is the day of the Lord GOD of hosts, a day of vengeance, that he may avenge himself of his adversaries…
5 Because you are all the sons of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. 6 Therefore let us not sleep as do others; but let us watch and be sober. 7 For those that sleep sleep in the night; and those that are drunk are drunk in the night. 8 But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for a helmet, the confidence of salvation. 9 For God has not destined us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ.
- This wrath is the judgment of our Holy God against sin.
- Christ paid in full—we are free from the burden of payment for our sins.
- Wrath is also the physical judgment on earth called the tribulation.
10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we live together with him. 11 So comfort yourselves together, and build one another up, even as you are doing. 12And we urge you, brothers, to know those who work among you, and are over you in the Lord, and warn you; 13 and to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. And be at peace among yourselves. 14 Now we exhort you, brothers, warn those that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men. 15 See that no one pays back evil for evil to any man; but always what is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. 16 Rejoice always.
- Psalm16:11 You will show me the path of life: in your presence is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures for evermore.
17 Pray without ceasing. 18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
- Prayer is the most advanced weapons system on the planet.
- God has placed something in the hands of His people that can accomplish the unimaginable without firing a shot.
- In 1984 a group called Open Door began a 7 year prayer campaign with the specific goal of religious freedom and Bibles for all.
- In 1990-1991 the iron curtain of Russia unexpectedly came down without a shot being fired.
- No power on the universe is like the power of prayer.
- We can be thankful in all things because God is working them for good.
- John 14:14 If you ask any thing in my name I will do it.
- Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to those that love God, to those who are the called according to his purpose.
19 Do not quench the Spirit.
- To quench the Spirit is to put out the Spirit’s fire.
- Ephesians 4:30 Do not grieve the Holy Spirit by which you are sealed unto the day of redemption. 31.Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice
- 1John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
20 Do not despise prophesyings. 21 Test all things; hold fast to what is good. 22 Abstain from all appearance of evil. 23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
- Jude 1:24 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy
The Lord does all our works in us
24 Faithful is he that calls you, who also will do it. 25 Brothers, pray for us. 26 Greet all the brothers with a holy kiss. 27 I charge you by the Lord to read this letter to all the holy brothers. 28 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.
- In Nehemiah 8:8 they stood before the people, read God’s Word, and gave understanding. God does the work in us that He requires.
- Matthew 4:4 Man does not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
- Isaiah 26:12 LORD, You will ordain peace for us: for You also have worked all our works in us.
SUMMARY: 1 Thessalonians 1-5
- God the Holy Spirit brings joy to our hearts
- Our God is the true and living God
- He raised Jesus from the dead
- He delivers us from the wrath to come
- He calls us into His kingdom and glory
- He directs our way
- He makes us increase and abound
- He is coming
- God has called us to holiness
- God avenges defrauding
- The Lord is going to call us up to meet Him in the air
- The day of the Lord comes suddenly and unexpectedly
- The Lord does all our works in us