1 Thessalonians Reading Guide
v1 - INTRODUCTION: Remember, we're reading a letter Paul wrote to a specific group of people at a specific time in history. The primary author of this letter, the Holy Spirit, intended this letter for us as well, but we must remember to interpret it from the Thessalonians' context.
v2-5 - Paul writes of his continual gratitude for the Thessalonian Christians.
v6-10 - Paul modeled the Christian life to the Thessalonians, and now they are modeling it to people all over the Roman empire.
You're likely familiar with the three primary Christian attributes that come from 1 Corinthians 13:13 - Faith, Hope, and Love. What's cool here in 1 Thessalonians is that those things aren't just the lofty goals of the Christian life, they're the foundation for a tangible life of blessing. Look how Paul puts it in v3:
We remember before our God and Father
your work produced by faith,
your labor prompted by love,
and your endurance
inspired by hope
in our Lord Jesus Christ.
As faith, love and hope produce work, labor and endurance in your life, you become a model to others for how to fulfil the two primary tasks of Christian living, shown to us in v9-10:
[Christians turn] to God from idols
to serve the living and true God,
& to wait for his Son
Let this be your focus as you go through your day: serve God and wait for His Son's imminent return.
OLD TESTAMENT REFERENCE:
Psalm 42 tells of the primal desire the author has for his faith to be fed by God's love. Here's the familiar refrain:
Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.
Use the comment box below to discuss one or more of these questions:
EYE FOR DETAIL— In the last verse of this chapter, Paul says the Thessalonians are known to be waiting for something. What are they waiting for?
In what ways to you agree and disagree with this statement: ALL people have faith, hope and love?
Question 1 from The Complete Bible Discussion Guide: New Testament
Follow the AAA Prayer Pattern:
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our Father (v1) who is the living and true God (v9)
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Ask that your faith, hope and love be fully rooted in God's truth
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: