1 Thessalonians 1–3; Psalm 116

1 Thessalonians Illustration

1 Thessalonians

Greeting

Paul, aSilvanus, and Timothy,

To the church of the bThessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:

cGrace to you and peace.

The Thessalonians’ Faith and Example

dWe give thanks to God always for all of you, constantly1 ementioning you in our prayers, remembering before four God and Father gyour work of faith and labor of hlove and isteadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. For we know, jbrothers2 loved by God, kthat he has chosen you, because lour gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and min the Holy Spirit and with full nconviction. You know owhat kind of men we proved to be among you for your sake. And pyou became imitators of us qand of the Lord, for ryou received the word in much affliction, swith the tjoy of the Holy Spirit, so that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia. For not only has the word of the Lord usounded forth from you in Macedonia and Achaia, but your faith in God has gone forth veverywhere, so that we need not say anything. For they themselves report concerning us the kind of wreception we had among you, and how xyou turned to God yfrom idols to serve the living and ztrue God, 10 and ato wait for his Son bfrom heaven, cwhom he raised from the dead, Jesus dwho delivers us from ethe wrath to come.

Paul’s Ministry to the Thessalonians

For you yourselves know, brothers,3 that our fcoming to you gwas not in vain. But though we had already suffered and been shamefully treated hat Philippi, as you know, iwe had boldness in our God jto declare to you the gospel of God in the midst of much kconflict. For lour appeal does not spring from merror or nimpurity or oany attempt to deceive, but just as we have been approved by God pto be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not qto please man, but to please God rwho tests our hearts. sFor we never came with words of flattery,4 as you know, nor with a pretext for greedtGod is witness. uNor did we seek glory from people, whether from you or from others, vthough we could have made wdemands as xapostles of Christ. But we were ygentle5 among you, zlike a nursing mother taking care of her own children. So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God abut also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us.

For you remember, brothers, bour labor and toil: we cworked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God. 10 You are witnesses, and dGod also, ehow holy and righteous and blameless was our conduct toward you believers. 11 For you know how, flike a father with his children, 12 we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you and gcharged hyou to walk in a manner worthy of God, iwho calls you into his own kingdom and glory.

13 And jwe also thank God constantly6 for this, that when you received kthe word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it lnot as the word of men7 but as what it really is, the word of God, mwhich is at work in you believers. 14 For you, brothers, nbecame imitators of othe churches of God in Christ Jesus that are in Judea. For pyou suffered the same things from your own countrymen qas they did from the Jews,8 15 rwho killed both the Lord Jesus and sthe prophets, and drove us out, and displease God and toppose all mankind 16 uby hindering us from speaking to the Gentiles that they might be savedso as always vto fill up the measure of their sins. But wwrath has come upon them at last!9

Paul’s Longing to See Them Again

17 But since we were torn away from you, brothers, for a short time, xin person not in heart, we endeavored the more eagerly and with great desire yto see you face to face, 18 because we wanted to come to youI, Paul, again and againbut Satan zhindered us. 19 For what is our hope or ajoy or crown of boasting bbefore our Lord Jesus at his ccoming? Is it not you? 20 For you are our glory and joy.

Therefore when we could bear it no longer, we were willing dto be left behind at Athens alone, and we esent Timothy, four brother and God’s coworker10 in the gospel of Christ, to establish and exhort you in your faith, that no one be moved by these afflictions. For you yourselves know that gwe are destined for this. For when we were with you, we kept telling you beforehand that we were to suffer affliction, hjust as it has come to pass, and just as you know. For this reason, iwhen I could bear it no longer, iI sent to learn about your faith, jfor fear that somehow kthe tempter had tempted you and lour labor would be in vain.

Timothy’s Encouraging Report

But mnow that Timothy has come to us from you, and has brought us the good news of nyour faith and love and reported othat you always remember us kindly and plong to see us, as we long to see you for this reason, brothers,11 in all our distress and affliction qwe have been comforted about you through your faith. For now we live, if you rare standing fast in the Lord. For swhat thanksgiving can we return to God for you, for all the joy that we feel for your sake before our God, 10 as we pray most earnestly tnight and day uthat we may see you face to face and vsupply what is lacking in your faith?

11 Now may wour God and Father himself, and our Lord Jesus, xdirect our way to you, 12 and may the Lord ymake you increase and abound in love zfor one another and for all, as we do for you, 13 so that he may aestablish your hearts blameless in holiness before wour God and Father, at bthe coming of our Lord Jesus cwith all his saints.


I Love the Lord

116  I ylove the Lord, because he has zheard

my voice and my pleas for mercy.

Because he ainclined his ear to me,

therefore I will call on him as long as I live.

bThe snares of death encompassed me;

the pangs of Sheol laid hold on me;

I suffered distress and anguish.

Then cI called on the name of the Lord:

O Lord, I pray, deliver my soul!

dGracious is the Lord, and erighteous;

our God is fmerciful.

The Lord preserves gthe simple;

when hI was brought low, he saved me.

Return, O my soul, to your irest;

for the Lord has jdealt bountifully with you.

For kyou have delivered my soul from death,

my eyes from tears,

my feet from stumbling;

I will walk before the Lord

lin the land of the living.

10  mI believed, neven when1 I spoke:

I am greatly afflicted;

11  oI said in my alarm,

pAll mankind are liars.

12  What shall I qrender to the Lord

for all his benefits to me?

13  I will lift up rthe cup of salvation

and scall on the name of the Lord,

14  I will tpay my vows to the Lord

in the presence of all his people.

15  uPrecious in the sight of the Lord

is the death of his vsaints.

16  O Lord, I am your wservant;

I am your servant, xthe son of your maidservant.

You have yloosed my bonds.

17  I will zoffer to you the sacrifice of thanksgiving

and scall on the name of the Lord.

18  I will tpay my vows to the Lord

in the presence of all his people,

19  in athe courts of the house of the Lord,

in your midst, O Jerusalem.

bPraise the Lord!