- Reflect & remember how the gospel has impacted your own life (v. 1).
- Know that God has entrusted you with the gospel message (v. 4). There is expectation that you share it. You are capable of sharing it.
- The gospel is able to stand on its own (v. 5). There is no need for us to change or update it.
- The gospel makes God glorious. Not you (v. 6).
- As you share the gospel, don’t attempt to force conversions. That’s the Holy Spirit’s job (v. 7).
- The gospel is best shared within the context of shared lives (v. 8). Invest yourself in other people.
- Live a life that builds gospel integrity (v. 9, 10). When our lives don’t mirror the gospel and God’s Word, we loose our credibility as we share.
- Sharing the gospel is personal (v. 12). Show people you genuinely care.
- Use the Bible (v. 13) It changes lives. Let God work.
- Rejoice when the gospel is received (v. 13). I have witnessed more applause for the service of the church florist than the repentance of a hardened sinner. This strikes me as inappropriate.
The gospel is the good news that the everlasting and ever-increasing joy of the never-boring, ever-satisfying Christ is ours freely and eternally by faith in the sin-forgiving death and hope-giving resurrection of Jesus Christ. – John Piper
In 1 Thess. chapter two, we see the heart of the apostle Paul regarding his desire to share the life-changing gospel of Christ. And why wouldn’t he? He understands and trusts the gospel to work as it is shared. May God grow in us the desire to share with others the redemption freely offered to us through the substitutionary death of Jesus on the cross.
Not only does Paul demonstrate the heart of a believer willing to share the good news, he also gives us an example of how to live in order to present the gospel effectively.
1 Paul, Silas and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace and peace to you.
- As is Paul’s usual custom, the epistle begins with salutations from Paul and others in his company, a naming of the recipients, and a short blessing.
- Interestingly, 1 & 2 Thess. are the only epistles in which Paul does not add a description of himself or those with him (Compare to Colossians 1.1). Perhaps this is due to the early writing of these epistles or his comfort level with the church.
- The writing also suggest that the epistle’s authorship is actually shared between the three men listed. The first person plural pronoun “we” is used throughout the book.
- “Silas” – see Acts 15.22-34. An abbreviated form of the longer, Silvanus. Leader in the church in Jerusalem. Also ministered at the church in Antioch. Accompanied Paul on his 2nd missionary journey (Acts 15.40).
- “Timothy” – Originally from Lystra. Mother was a messianic jew and his father was a non-believing Greek. Constant companion to Paul throughout his ministry, Paul’s “son in the faith”.
- “church” – the term church, in it’s broadest meaning can simply refer to an assembly of social, religious, or political gatherings.
- However, Paul gives the reader a couple of qualifiers which sets this group apart from others. “In God the Father” – 1) “God” – meaning the God of the Old Testament, whom both Jews and Christians worshipped, and 2) “the Father” – carries the ideas of authority and benevolence. “and the Lord Jesus Christ” – Jesus is designated as “the Christ” the promised one from the Old Testament and as “Lord” or Master. Jesus’ designation as “Lord” become more widely used after his resurrection, though it isn’t completely absent in gospel narratives.
- “Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.” (Phil. 2.9-11)
- Both epistles identify Paul as the author. If fact his name occurs as the first word of verse 1 of 1 & 2 Thess. His authorship is rarely disputed among scholars.
- Paul founded the church at Thessalonica in his second missionary journey. Acts 17.1-10.
- “And some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, as did a great many of the devout Greeks and not a few of the leading women” (Acts 17.4)
4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
The resurrection of Christ is the most pivotal moment in all of history. It is the climactic event our faith in Christ as Redeemer is validated and the moment which all of our Christian faith relies upon. In this session we see John’s portrait of the resurrected Christ.
And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith (1 Cor. 15.14).
In short, I didn’t become a Christian because God promised I would have an even happier life than I had as an atheist. He never promised any such thing. Indeed, following him would inevitably bring divine demotions in the eyes of the world. Rather, I became a Christian because the evidence was so compelling that Jesus really is the one-and-only Son of God who proved his divinity by rising from the dead. That meant following him was the most rational and logical step I could possibly take. – Lee Strobel
The truth of the resurrection gives life to every other area of gospel truth. The resurrection is the pivot on which all of Christianity turns and without which none of the other truths would much matter. Without the resurrection, Christianity would be so much wishful thinking, taking its place alongside all other human philosophy and religious speculation. – John MacArthur
In these two chapters we encounter the darkest hours in the life of Christ. Betrayal. Arrest. Fraudulent charges. Bogus trial. Death.
Although these moments seem dark, they prove to be Christ’s finest hour in his work of redemption.
The High Priestly Prayer
I. Jesus Prays For Himself
17 When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you,2 since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. 3 And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. 4 I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.
16 “I have said all these things to you to keep you from falling away. 2 They will put you out of the synagogues. Indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God. 3 And they will do these things because they have not known the Father, nor me. 4 But I have said these things to you, that when their hour comes you may remember that I told them to you.
I Am the True Vine
15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. 7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. 9 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.