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Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible ® (NASB), Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.Lockman.org

 

2 THESSALONIANS CHAPTER 1

KJV    NAS

1-3 Paul and 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 the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 3 We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brethren, as is only fitting, because your faith is greatly enlarged, and the love of each one of you toward one another grows ever greater;

 

2The 1-1,2 -- No Entries

 

2The 1,3-10

(7e) Responsibility >> Protecting the gospel >> God defends His own word – God defends us against our enemies; however, He also uses them to sharpen us on the tongs their adversity. He will let them have their way to a point, and then He will act on our behalf, because of His promise to protect us and to preserve His witness in the world. Ultimately, though, He will repay us for all we have suffered for His namesake. God’s penalty is severe on those who would raise their hand against the innocent.

(98ka) Thy kingdom come >> Endurance (Thorn in the flesh) >> Endurance invites the Holy Spirit into your life >> The salvation of God >> Enduring the wicked is to overcome them – There will always be those who are being saved. These are the ones for whom the Church is destined. They are the ones who make Paul’s purpose meaningful as an evangelist and a preacher and a teacher. If nobody believed, the Church would not exist. This is why Paul said Jesus is the “savior of all men, and especially of those who believe” (1Tim 4-10).

2The 1,3-7

(71d) Authority >> Ordained by God >> Worthiness of man >> God makes us worthy of heaven – God makes us worthy of heaven through our willingness to endure suffering. What is eternal life worth to us? Would suffering cause us to curse God and die as Job’s wife advised her husband, ‘Get this over with, curse God and die,’ she essentially told him (Job 2-9,10). Job didn’t receive good advice from anyone; he was completely alone in his suffering, which made it all the worse, but when he came out the other end, nobody but he was approved. Note also that nothing was ever spoken against his wife, who enjoyed the fruit of her husband’s faith. God did not judge his wife because Job represented her through his faith that raised him victoriously over his afflictions. This is the whole purpose of our endurance. Suffering has no intrinsic value; rather, it is endurance; our willingness to accept whatever happens to us in this life has deep, intrinsic value. Those who truly believe in God will not abandon their faith or sacrifice it or trade it in hope of reducing our suffering. Job’s wife urged him to do just that, using this logic: ‘Since the ultimate source of your suffering is God, abandon your faith that your suffering might stop.’ This logic is like saying, ‘Since you have fallen off the ship and the towline you are holding is causing you to be battered against the waves, let go of the rope. Job’s wife figured that if he abandoned his faith, it would reduce his affliction, since God was endorsing it, but all it would have done was add to it, and in the end he would have had nothing. Job kept his faith in God, though he was tortured and afflicted by Satan, which God allowed, and this was also the case with the Thessalonians. They were being afflicted and persecuted for their faith, and it was their endurance that gave them the victory.

(98m) Thy kingdom come >> Endurance (Thorn in the flesh) >> – This persecution and affliction is a plain indication of God’s righteous judgment as God uses it to prove we are worthy of His kingdom for which indeed we are suffering. It is well enough to say, ‘God, I love you,’ but the purpose of all this evil in the world and all our suffering is to prove our love to God. Since God knows everything, it seems moot that we need to prove anything to Him, so it is not for Him but for us to know these things. God thinks in terms of eternity. In a million, billion years from now God doesn’t want any lingering questions such as: do I really love God? How do I know I love God? Do I really hate sin? If I had the opportunity to sin, would I do it? All these questions are answered in the persecutions and afflictions that we endure today.

(100a) Thy kingdom come >> Perseverance (Working to keep in motion) >> Persevere in tribulation – It is one thing to experience persecution and affliction, but it is another thing to endure them. If we endure our persecutions and afflictions, it guarantees that we will grow. That is God’s promise. There are two kinds of persecution: silent persecution and direct persecution. In silent persecution they ignore the gospel and hope it goes away, and if it doesn’t they will attempt to kill it as they killed Jesus, but this never works. Therefore, when God and His people are bent on bringing the gospel to the world, the world is powerless to stop it. 

(156e) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of salvation >> You will know them by their endurance

(188e) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Suffering >> Suffering the will of God in your life – Endurance is one of the great virtues of Christianity. The willingness to endure our circumstances holds promise in this life and in the life to come; it is the very foundation of our faith in Jesus. Faith is summed up in the word “endurance.” If we are willing to live for Jesus under any and all circumstances, God says we are His believers. True faith is not hinged on our various circumstances, but on the truth, which remains constant. Endurance adds an extra level of faith to our relationship with God; it makes us worthy of heaven. Christians who have an easy life go to heaven because of their faith in Jesus, compared to the person who believes in Jesus but has a miserable life from persecution and affliction and hardships of every kind, or disease or bodily malfunctions, whatever it is that God requires him to suffer. His willingness to endure his trials draws him closer to his faith in Jesus so that God sees him as more than acceptable but even worthy of His Kingdom. We could say that nobody is worthy of heaven; we are all sinners saved by the grace of God, who sees no one as worthy of the His Kingdom, but He also says of those who are willing to endure their circumstances, their endurance has the power to change His mind. The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all unrighteousness, but our endurance gives us a badge of honor in the sight of God that He will remember for all eternity. 

(242kb) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Persecuting the kingdom >> Reacting to persecution >> Enduring persecution >> Having a reputation of being persecuted – Paul speaks proudly of the Thessalonians to all the other churches, because of “your perseverance and faith in the midst of all your persecutions and afflictions, which you endure.” This is the mechanism of their spiritual growth: persecution and affliction. They will cause us to either fall away from God or flourish, depending on the quality of our faith. If we have nothing more than a religion, then we will flee from persecution and affliction, because no matter what brand of religion we have, it is never worth pain and suffering. However, our faith in Jesus is worth it. Those who are religious tend not to be persecuted as much, but those who have a genuine relationship with Jesus Christ will be persecuted because of the Holy Spirit that exudes from them, for He is an offense to the world. Even love can give offense to some people, because they suspect the Lord Jesus Christ is behind it. The world hates Jesus and it always will, but there will always be some, who will come away from the world and cleave to Christ and become the children of God.

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

2The 1,3-5

(115j) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> Through obedience of faith >> Through determination >> Determined to obey Christ

(137l) Temple >> Building the temple (with hands) >> Maturity >> Maturing with our brothers >> Maturity is tested by our relationship with others

2The 1-3,4

(11h) Servant >> Love is our standard of ministry toward each other – The true test of our faith and love is adversity. If we can maintain our convictions through the difficulties that life throws at us, it will authenticate our sincerity both to ourselves and to those who watch us. Endurance is one of the most valuable treasures, because it can take us where we want to go, and bridge the gap between what we want and what we have, between who we want to be and who we really are. It is our ticket through the door of honor, where only greatness can tread, greatness demonstrated by caring about others more than yourself.

(81j) Thy kingdom come >> Pray without ceasing >> For the Church -- These verses go with verses 11&12

(229b) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Kingdom grows by itself >> Growing In Numbers Corresponds With Spiritual Growth >> Kingdom grows in strength – How much bigger compliment could Paul give, that the people of God are growing. He didn’t say they were numerically growing, even though they probably were. Although Paul was an evangelist he was even happier that they were spiritually growing and that they understood God in a deeper and fuller way each day. This guaranteed the Church’s health, success, stability and its very existence in the world more than if it merely grew in numbers. They could numerically grow and not know why they were even there, and eventually they would phase out, but if the Church grows spiritually, it would guarantee that they would also grow in numbers, which in many respects is just as important. To be growing in the love of God is to be growing in love toward one another, and this is the greatest proof that Jesus is with us. So, there is priority in everything, and the Church’s spiritual health comes before numbers, for without spiritual health all they will do is hurt people. If the Church is not growing spiritually, it is decaying, and people will sense the decay and flee from it. We are not about the smell of spiritual decay, but the fragrance of Jesus Christ and all He supplies and provides for His people. Jesus always taught that His greatest addition to a person’s life was quality, not quantity. The Holy Spirit wants to impart quality into each of us before He calls quantities of people to His church.

2The 1-3

(125a) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Love is the action of faith >> Love is the response of receiving from God

(131i) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Unity >> Interdependence >> Encouraging one another

(156d) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of salvation >> Loving your fellow man is evidence of salvation >> Love the brethren

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

4&5 therefore, we ourselves speak proudly of you among the churches of God for your perseverance and faith in the midst of all your persecutions and afflictions which you endure. 5 This is a plain indication of God's righteous judgment so that you will be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which indeed you are suffering.

 

2The 1,4-10

(157a) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of being hell-bound >> Rejecting God >> Rejecting the truth

2The 1-4,5

(189c) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Holy sacrifice >> Acceptable sacrifice -- These verses go with verses 11,12

(192f) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Result of putting off the old man >> Gain by losing >> Waiting for God to do it His way >> Lose your rights to gain His vindication -- These verses go with verse 10

(209e) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Righteous saved with difficulty >> Righteous saved with hardship >> Righteous saved with endurance – Our suffering does not bring about God’s righteous judgment; our endurance does. God considers those in heaven as worthy of being there, because of our endurance. We know that no one actually deserves heaven or to be saved or forgiven, but if God considers us worthy, who are we to argue with Him (Lk 20-35). God by His sovereign authority has deemed us worthy of Him by enduring the things we suffer. Some people might want to become masochistic and seek out afflictions in order to become all the more worthy of His kingdom, but it is not how much we endure as much as our willingness to endure His will in our lives that invariably causes suffering. If we go looking for trouble in order to be considered more worthy of His kingdom, God does not add to our worthiness, for anybody who is bold enough to believe in Jesus in a world that hates God is guaranteed a life of adversity, so there is no need to look for it. “Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2Tim 3-12). Suffering and afflictions are so much a guarantee in this life because of our faith that the Bible speaks of it as though suffering itself made us worthy of heaven. It is so much as aspect of this life, so deeply interwoven into the natural realm affecting the human experience that we who endure our difficulties and personal afflictions prove our faith, and by that proof God approves us.

2The 1-4

(165h) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Hardship >> The hardship of persecution

2The 1,5-12

(38d) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death (Satan) >> Resurrection brings about judgment – There is a day set by the Father, the First Resurrection, which also happens to be the day of the Rapture. There is also the day of the Lord, but that is actually a sequence of days consisting of years in which God will judge the earth through various plagues as a consequence of martyring His people, leading to the crescendo of the First Resurrection. God is glorified in us and we are glorified in Him, and that will not be more demonstrated in this world than the day of the First Resurrection, which is probably not long from now. We glorify Him by our faith, and He glorifies us through His works that He performs in us and through us. God will give us a new body at the First Resurrection by His grace. The Rapture will not pertain to the people of Paul’s day, knowing the Scriptures are eternal, this verse is still relevant; that day is still coming when Paul and the people of his day who believed in Jesus will be raised from the dead to receive new bodies, signaling the end of the age of grace. Therefore, Paul is writing about the very last day of this age that we are now living, which will be a very glorious day when Jesus comes to be glorified in His saints, meaning that the saints will glorify Him, but it also says that He will glorify them too. He will glorify them by giving them new bodies in the First Resurrection, and they will glorify Him by their faith.

2The 1,5-10

(28i) Gift of God >> God is our advocate >> God crushes those who make us stumble

(29a) Gift of God >> God is our advocate >> Delivered from our persecutors – Sometimes God delivers us from our enemies in the life to come. Our suffering and affliction is a plain indication that those who afflict us will be going to hell with those who do not know God and do not obey His gospel. Many people ask why God allows His people to suffer; why doesn’t He help us? The enemies of the gospel will suffer in hell forever; therefore, it is just that God should allow us to suffer for a little while. God does help us sometimes, but He wants to help us on a spiritual level and let the cards fall where they may, instead of coming to our rescue every time we run into trouble. If He did this, it would disable the whole point of adversity, which is to strengthen us in our faith. In heaven there won't be any adversity and all faith will be given to us so that neither faith nor adversity will be needed, but in this life faith grows as we struggle in our difficulties. What we discover about ourselves is that we still believe in God even though we suffer, meaning that we are going to believe in Jesus no matter what happens. We know that God’s intensions are good for us and that no evil has come from Him against us. God is not responsible for the evil that happens to us, though He uses it to see how we respond and rewards us accordingly. He is always ready to help us grow in our faith through our circumstances, which is His purpose for us in this life. God has commanded us to come out from among them and be separate from the world, and then preach the gospel to them that they too might be saved. We make enemies that way, so the world itself is against us, yet we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us, that He might create a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. These are the ones who will live with Him forever in the Kingdom of Heaven, and He has taken some from every generation for thousands of years, so the Kingdom of Heaven will be filled with people. God will deliver them from every enemy they have ever known.

(40m) Judgment >> God is glorified >> God defends His righteous ones through judgment

(49k) Judgment >> Judgment day >> God judges the world >> The great tribulation – In the same way that God wants us to prove our faith, so He desires the wicked to prove their unbelief, so He can judge them for it. This is referring to the war of Armageddon in the last days when man’s mind becomes fused with Satan's, who together literally wage war against God. Of course Satan is leading them, so the question becomes, does the devil really hope to win this war through the use of human flesh or is he purposely herding mankind into a great furnace of God’s judgment? The answer is both scenarios are probably true at the same time. Mankind will have become insane by this point, so it makes sense that their leader is most insane, suggesting that the devil hopes to somehow win this war against God, even though he knows in his heart that it is impossible. Satan has put himself in a no-lose situation; though he will lose the war, he is driving mankind into the judgment of God, like pushing someone in front of a speeding truck. Prior to this war God will have pummeled the earth with many punishments throughout the trumpets and the bowls, mankind being defenseless against them, yet they have learned nothing from this, but continue in vain hope to somehow defeat God in this war, which will end the same moment it begins. Mankind will have become completely insane; indeed, a spirit of insanity has already entered the very fabric of social consciousness in preparation for this war.

2The 1,5-7

(49e) Judgment >> Enemies of God’s church are destroyed

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

6 For after all it is only just for God to repay with affliction those who afflict you,

 

2The 1,6-10

(15j) Servant >> Angels execute Judgment >> In regard to the world

(21d) Sin >> Disobedience will condemn you to hell – It doesn’t say that God deals out retribution to those who do not believe; it says He deals out retribution to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. God doesn’t care if we believe the gospel; He only cares if we obey it. What is the gospel but that we should believe in Jesus by obeying His commandment, and what is His commandment but that we should love one another? God deals out retribution to those who are persecuting and afflicting the Church. We can’t love God’s people while we persecute and afflict them. Therefore, persecutors of the Church not only have denied heaven, they don’t want to go there because they hate God. He created a place for them, where His presence does not exist. Shouldn't that make them happy? Nothing of Himself is there. He has created a place and removed all attributes of Himself from it. There is virtually nothing in hell that would remind anyone of God, not a flitting bird through the sky, not a sky, no clouds, no rain, no water, no trees, nothing growing, nothing alive. There is nothing in hell but a sea of humanity who refuses to serve God and a boiling pot of liquid hot magma in which God will throw them. Those who find their way out of the lake of fire are welcome to lie on the shores of nowhere with only the memories of evil tormenting their minds forever, having forgotten every happy moment they ever had, perhaps forgetting there was ever a sky and birds that played and twirled in its breezes. All they will ever know is their darkness now. The sadness of their souls alone would kill any mortal, but now they cannot die. God will give them a body, but they will not be able to see anything good in it. After a million years, God could release them and give them a second chance, and they would all reject God’s offer of eternal life, and He would have to throw them all back into hell again where they belong.

(25l) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> You’re walking in death if you’re not walking in Jesus – 2Cor 5-10,11 says, “Always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.” Something similar is happening to those who are in hell. The damned are dead, yet behold they live. They are having the opposite experience of our own, according to this verse. They are not suffering for Jesus’ sake like Paul and the rest of us who serve the Lord, but they are alive just the same even thought they are dead, and are continuously dying but can never die. They might as well have become Christians than to eternally relive our experience of suffering obedience in a body that doesn’t want to serve the Lord. The meaning of being alive in hell is not the same life that we understand here on earth, any more than we understand the life in those who enjoy heaven, but one day we will know their life when we get there and experience it first hand. Life is a mystery in hell, eluding even its inhabitants. It is a paradox to be living and dead at the same time, yet this is the condition of those in hell.

(29h) Gift of God >> God is on our side >> He fights our battles for us

(40b) Judgment >> Jesus is the judge >> Jesus judges the world’s disobedience

(87b) Thy kingdom come >> Obedience >> Be doers of the word from the heart >> We have no choice but to be doers of the word

(104e) Thy kingdom come >> Purifying process >> Purified by fire >> Hell is an eternal purifying process – God has established the earth in a very large universe for the sole purpose of us proving to Him, to ourselves and to each other what is really in us. God has given us an opportunity to demonstrate a willingness to love and a willingness to hate, a willingness to condemn and a willingness to forgive. God will reward those who serve Him, and He will condemn the rest to eternal suffering for all eternity. You could call it punishment; God does, but more than that, hell is a place of the dead. He made it for those who love and believe in sin rather than faith and trust in God. Hell is nothing more than an alternative to heaven. It’s a place that God has prepared for those who would rather be stuck in an eternally descending process of dying in hell than to enjoy the eternal increase of life in heaven. It is their choice; people don’t have to go to heaven if they don’t want to be there, but at the same time He doesn’t feel obligated to make a comfortable alternative to His perfect righteousness and love. Rather, if man doesn’t want God, then neither can he enjoy any characteristic of His presence, not a blue sky, not a living blade of grass, not a singing sparrow, etc. God is totally committed to staying out of our way and allowing us to exercise our free will that He has given us up to but not including self-destruction.

(109a) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Revelations of the Holy Spirit >> Spirit reveals the Father

(180h) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Rebellion >> Rebelling against God’s narrow way >> Rebelling against the word of God

(200d) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Rejecting Christ >> Rejecting the faith of God >> Rejecting Christ through disobedience – They will not see the presence of the Lord and the glory of His power. All these things are beautiful, and they decided against all that is beautiful. Instead, they decided they would be masters of their own universe, and so they are in hell. There they sit with no one to govern; God gave them what they wanted. What we want is not always what we really want, yet God has given them enough time and opportunity to show Him what they really want, and they were very adamant about not wanting anything to do with God, so it wasn’t a flippant decision they made. God may have given them 70 years to make their decision that they don’t want God. How flippant is it when you are given 70 years to make a single decision? The presence of the Lord and the glory of His power are meant for His saints, “When He comes to be glorified in them and to be marveled at among all who have believed.” On the one hand God condemns the wicked for not obeying the gospel, and on the other hand He glorifies the saints because they have believed. The wicked could not produce as much as a single indication of faith, while the saints are dedicated to bearing fruit for the Kingdom of God and demonstrating their faith in everything they say and do.

(208e) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Salvation verses >> Preaching on hell – Hell is such a bad place that a mortal man would not last a second, either from the sorrow of being condemned by God as sinners or from the conditions of hell itself. Putting these two together is death upon death, as Paul said in 2Cor 6-9,10, ‘As sorrowful, yet always rejoicing… as dying yet behold we live.’ So, those in hell are continuously dying, yet behold they live. They might as well have served the Lord while living in the flesh if they are going to spend the rest of eternity living out what Paul and we endured in our flesh at the hands of unbelievers, though only for a season. At least we have the Holy Spirit with us during our time of sorrow, which turns our sorrow into joy for the opportunity to suffer for the sake of Christ, but those in hell are as far away from the Holy Spirit as possible and more alone than anyone on earth could ever feel.

(218c) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> You cannot control the judgment of God >> You cannot control how God responds to persecution

2The 1,6-9

(153d) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> God bears witness against the world >> Shame >> Hiding under a cloud of guilt >> Your sin will find you out

2The 1-6,7

(117d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Let Jesus do the work >> Let Him work on your circumstances

(228a) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> Comforted >> God comforts you in times of adversity >> He comforts you in your suffering

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

7-10 and to give relief to you who are afflicted and to us as well when the Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, 8 dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, 10 when He comes to be glorified in His saints on that day, and to be marveled at among all who have believed -for our testimony to you was believed.

 

2The 1,7-9

(66a) Authority >> Lordship of Christ >> He is Lord over all creation >> over life and death 

2The 1,8-10

(47i) Judgment >> God Judges the world >> Hell is the absence of God – Those in hell who will suffer forever would find heaven even worse, because God is there, the person they hate; and all the saints will be there, many of whom they martyred. If heaven were forced upon them, they would have a perpetual reminder of their wickedness, and so the best thing to do is find a place where God does not exist and stay there, and that place is called hell. The Bible talks about the lake of fire, but it also talks about the wicked receiving a resurrected body, and we don’t know what kind of body they will receive, but we can assume it will be a body suited for the environment of hell. If they can endure fire, who knows what differences it will have to their current bodies. After this life, if they have never repented of their unbelief, they will stand before God not wishing to go to heaven and not wanting to go to hell; their hearts will be filled with angst. The only alternative is a place that God has prepared for those who hate Him, where no good thing dwells. The kindness that God had shown them throughout his life will have ended on the day of their death. Now, for the rest of eternity all they will experience is suffering and evil, and there is no one to blame but themselves. The hell they will face will match the ways of their own darkness, but it won’t make them happy. They will be alone with no one to care for them, thrown into a world that is just like them. They have finally found a place that models after their own philosophies, and it will make them miserable, because they never stopped to think of the misery they caused other people.

2The 1-8,9

(26c) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> Death is separation from God’s presence

(154a) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> God bears witness against the world >> No excuse >> There is no excuse for rejecting Christ

(173g) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Catholicism >> Unholy sacrifice >> Offering sacrifice without God’s approval >> Sacrifice against the will of God

(201b) Denying Christ >> Whoever is not with Jesus is against him >> You are against Christ when your unbelief materializes >> Our disobedience is against Christ

(203a) Denying Christ >> Running from God >> Wicked men cannot approach the throne of God >> God chases them away from His presence

(203h) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Back-slider >> Withdraw from obeying God >> Withdrawing from God – We are not to judge our brother as to whether he believes in God or is saved or is going to heaven, for we don’t know a person’s heart, and so we are incapable of knowing these things. Even if we accurately judge a person, we were not called to judge, and so there is no advantage in doing so. There are people who never believed in God, who never made a confession of faith or a claim to godliness; these will pay the penalty of eternal destruction in hell, apart from God’s presence and glory, and if anybody withdraws from God to the point of losing his salvation, which is possible, they will go to the same place. Those who never knew God may have gone to church all their lives, and may have confessed their faith in God and made a claim to godliness, but they never obeyed His will or subjected their flesh to the word of God. Instead, they walked in disobedience, which is the same as unbelief; so if they grossly disobey Christ, neither do they believe in Him. Some have repented of their waywardness and returned to Christ, whereas others have crossed some kind of indistinct line drawn as it were in the sand. Those who have completely given up on God and given up on faith and decided that none of it is real or true, and have come to their own revelation that they have believed in fairytales, have crossed that line and are now lumped with those who never believed in the first place, though with one distinct disadvantage: their heart has been hardened to the point of no return.

(209c) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Personal relationship >> Counterfeit relationship through religion >> I never knew you

2The 1-8

(217i) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> I never knew you >> Because you never knew Him

2The 1-9

(145f) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Deliverance from demon possession >> Human state >> Filthiness >> Being defiled

2The 1,10-12

(66c) Authority >> Lordship of Christ >> Jesus is Lord of His people

(95k) Thy kingdom come >> Attitude >> Having an obedient attitude >> Ready to do good

(233j) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the glory of God >> Seek His glory without wavering >> Seek His glory through perseverance – In Mat 5-6 Jesus said, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied,” and Paul prays for the Thessalonian Church that God would fulfill every desire for goodness and the work of faith with power. There are things that people want to do, ministries that God conceives in their hearts that they want to manifest in the world, ways of helping people and blessing them, doing good for mankind in the name of Jesus Christ. By this they will need to work with God, and He will empower their faith. A mere human effort accomplishes only that which is done, but when God gets involved, He causes a chain reaction, multiplying the fruit that is born of faith. When people understand that we are ministering to those in need in the name of Jesus for the purpose of glorifying His name, we will either be persecuted, which will in turn publicize the work of God all the more, or people will want to get involved, knowing that it is not just a human effort but one that seeks to glorify God. Either way the ministry will grow.

2The 1-10

(192f) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Result of putting off the old man >> Gain by losing >> Waiting for God to do it His way >> Lose your rights to gain His vindication -- This verse goes with verses 4&5

(236l) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Transferring the kingdom >> The Church is transferred to the kingdom >> The Rapture >> The day of the Lord – This is another instance written concerning the Day of the Lord, every time it is mentioned in the Bible its significance increases, which increases our need to properly understand it.

(252b) Trinity >> You shall put no other gods before Me >> Worship Jesus (Because He is equal with God) >> Jesus is worthy of our worship >> Worship Jesus for who he is

(252i) Trinity >> You shall put no other gods before Me >> Worship God >> Worship God for who He is >> Glorifying God – The goal of our ministry is to glorify God. It all goes back to Jn 3-21, “He who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.” When it comes to glorifying God, all the passages in the Bible that speak of it dovetail into this one verse. Our ministry originated from Him; He put it in us. This is not humanism; we are not good people. God has placed His goodness in us that hungers and thirsts for righteousness (Mat 5-6), and we are seeking a ministry from Him, conceived in our hearts by the Holy Spirit, and we desire to manifest that ministry in the world as a way of conveying to everyone who sees and hears that He desires His grace in them too. He longs for every person to be saved and destined for heaven, and he wants to impart a desire for His righteousness and truth.

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11&12 To this end also we pray for you always, that our God will count you worthy of your calling, and fulfill every desire for goodness and the work of faith with power, 12 so that the name of our Lord Jesus will be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

2The 1-11,12

(11b) Servant >> Standard for being a servant >> A Spirit-filled life

(30e) Gift of God >> Prepare to receive from God >> We must first get His attention

(44j) Judgment >> Transformed >> Fulfill your ministry according to the will of God

(71e) Authority >> Ordained by God >> Worthiness of man >> Perfecting the worthiness He has given us

(77m) Thy kingdom come >> Being Humble Before God >> Exalting God through humility

(81j) Thy kingdom come >> Pray without ceasing >> For the Church -- These verses go with verses 3&4

(82c) Thy kingdom come >> Three elements of prayer >> Direction (Attitude) >> Who to pray for

(91g) Thy kingdom come >> The called >> Walking along the narrow way >> Responding to the call of God – God is giving mankind an opportunity to prove their faith, to show that they are worthy of their calling. How do we prove our worthiness? We walk on what I call the trail of good works that God has prepared for us, otherwise known as the narrow way. This is also how we “fulfill every desire for goodness and the work of faith with power.” It’s all on that trail, not on many trails, but one. There is one trail for each of us, not the same trail, but each has his own narrow way that God has prepared, and each person’s trail leads to the same destination, which is faith in Jesus Christ. It is analogous to Jesus shining with the glory of God, and we are all coming to Him on our own designated light beam. We all get there in a similar fashion, but from a slightly different perspective. If we walk according to this trail (or beam of light) we will have perfect faith in God, which will encourage others, because it won’t be a carbon copy of other people’s faith, because of the distinct ways we all take to get there. This is why each of us has something to offer the body of Christ. Not everyone experiences Christ in the same way. The things we offer need to be available to one another when the product we offer is the work of faith with power. 

(116a) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> Through Good Works >> Works That God put in your heart – It is a travesty for some who have a desire for goodness, to leave that goodness unfulfilled. We may desire good things without being spirit-filled, but we cannot fulfill those desires without an endowment from above. Since this was Paul’s prayer, it is something he is asking God to do for them, yet the Thessalonians had an obligation too. We too must also strive to fulfill our desire for goodness and pray for God’s help to fulfill our calling. Paul is talking about working our faith. Doesn’t our faith move God, and don’t we consider His work to be the grace of God? So, working our faith is like a lever with the fulcrum at the far end that works the grace of God, allowing us to perform works far greater than we could ever do on our own. We must have a desire for goodness to do the works of God by faith in His power. We all know that the works of God and the works of men are two different things; however, God wants these to come together, and the motivating factor behind them is our desire for goodness. These two things, the works of men and the works of God seem incompatible, but God seeks to harmonize them. Most people understand the grace of God as it pertains to His willingness and ability to forgive our trespasses and sins, but the definition of His grace is wider than that, empowering us to do His will. The goal of Christ is to make His works our works. There are things that only God can do, such as judging the world, the First Resurrection, the Rapture and the creation itself, but when it comes to manifesting God in this world, He has given us an assignment, “and working together with Him, we also urge you not to receive the grace of God in vain” (2Cor 6-1). The saints have tapped into the power of God, and this is how they produce the work of faith. Their life of faith is not difficult for them; rather, it’s all joy for those who have the power of God in their hands.

(117c) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Rest in His yoke by faith

(127h) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Goodness >> Rewards for doing good >> Doing good is the will of God

(189c) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Holy sacrifice >> Acceptable sacrifice -- These verses go with verses 4&5

(228f) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> God is working in you to place you in His will >> To place you on the trail of good works

(230b) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Partaking >> What we must do to partake of the kingdom >> Partaking which requires our participation

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2The 1-11

(76j) Thy kingdom come >> Desires of your heart >> Desiring to do the will of God – God gives us desires for goodness, and then works in us to fulfill those desires, so all we have to do is obey. We shouldn’t fuss or complain about His will, because we know it is the best thing for us and for those around us. Doing His will brings glory to His name, which should be our top priority. Obeying Christ is a win-win situation for everyone, and God is in control of it, orchestrating His righteousness in each of His children. Everyone seems a little lost, yet everyone who is a saint is walking with God and is striving to do His will. When we look into our lives, we can see a logical procession of good works linked as a chain of events that led our feet where we are now standing. We can see the work of God in our lives, though not everything is an aspect of God’s purpose. We were born to do the works of God, and doing them will lead us to a better understanding of Him.

(88b) Thy kingdom come >> Faith produces works >> Relationship between faith and works >> The work of faith – God is not content with sitting in the background but is ready to manifest Himself in our “work of faith with power.” Some people want the power of God for all the wrong reasons and others shy from it altogether. They fear listening to the wrong spirits and getting deceived and confused, possibly finding themselves in a cult. However, if the Bible says there is such a thing as “the work of faith with power,” then we should pursue it without fear, not on our own terms, but on the terms that the Holy Spirit has revealed to us through the Scriptures, for this in itself is a demonstration of His power. God works with each of us differently, not just a little differently but a lot differently, and this is something that we need to understand so we don’t wrongfully judge one another. It is not a quantitative work that God is doing in us; rather, God guarantees quality in the work of faith we do by His power (1Cor 3-13).

2The 1-12

(67j) Authority >> Jesus delegates authority >> Glorifying the name of Jesus – It takes the grace of God for us to glorify the name of Jesus, for we can’t do it in the flesh. Christ is glorified in us and we in Him; that is, we glorify each other. Jesus and the Father have the same kind of relationship, according to Jn 17-1, “Father, the hour has come; glorify Your Son, that the Son may glorify You.” We glorify each other in stepladder type fashion one rung at a time, the right foot representing Christ, the left foot representing the Church, as God lifts us to new levels of spiritual maturity. We glorify Christ in the knowledge we have of Him that we reveal to the world and that we use in the Church to help each other grow in the faith; and He in turn glorifies us in the ministry we have in His name, and reveals in our hearts the blessing and glory of God that is ours both in this life and in the life to come.

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