2 Thessalonians 1–3; Acts 18:4–28

2 Thessalonians Illustration

2 Thessalonians

Greeting

aPaul, Silvanus, and Timothy,

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

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Thanksgiving

bWe ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers,1 as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. Therefore cwe ourselves boast about you din the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith ein all your persecutions and in the afflictions that you are enduring.

The Judgment at Christ's Coming

This is fevidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be gconsidered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering since indeed God considers it hjust ito repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant jrelief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when kthe Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven lwith his mighty angels min flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those nwho do not know God and on those who odo not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will suffer the punishment of peternal destruction, qaway from2 the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might, 10 rwhen he comes on sthat day tto be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed, because our utestimony to you vwas believed. 11 To this end we walways pray for you, that our God may xmake you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every ywork of faith by his power, 12 so that the name of our Lord Jesus zmay be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Man of Lawlessness

Now concerning athe coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our bbeing gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers,3 not to be quickly shaken in mind or calarmed, either dby a spirit or a espoken word, or ea letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that fthe day of the Lord has come. gLet no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, hunless the rebellion comes first, and ithe man of lawlessness4 is revealed, jthe son of destruction,5 who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, kproclaiming himself to be God. Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? And you know what is restraining him now so that he may be revealed in his time. For lthe mystery of lawlessness mis already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way. And then nthe lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus owill kill with pthe breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by qthe appearance of his coming. The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan rwith all power and false signs and wonders, 10 and with all wicked deception for sthose who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 Therefore tGod sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe uwhat is false, 12 in order that all may be condemned vwho did not believe the truth but whad pleasure in unrighteousness.

Stand Firm

13 But xwe ought always to give thanks to God for you, ybrothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you zas the firstfruits6 ato be saved, bthrough sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth. 14 To this he called you through cour gospel, aso that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 15 So then, brothers, dstand firm and hold to ethe traditions that you were taught by us, either fby our spoken word or by four letter.

16 Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, gwho loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hhope through grace, 17 comfort your hearts and iestablish them in every good work and word.

Pray for Us

Finally, brothers,7 jpray for us, that kthe word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored,8 as happened among you, and lthat we may be delivered from wicked and evil men. For mnot all have faith. But nthe Lord is faithful. He will establish you and oguard you against pthe evil one.9 And qwe have confidence in the Lord about you, that you are doing and will do the things that we command. May the Lord rdirect your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ.

Warning Against Idleness

Now we command you, brothers, sin the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, tthat you keep away from any ubrother vwho is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us. For you yourselves know whow you ought to imitate us, because xwe were not idle when we were with you, nor did we eat anyone's bread without paying for it, but ywith toil and labor we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you. It was znot because we do not have that right, but to give you in ourselves aan example to imitate. 10 For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: bIf anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. 11 For we hear that some among you cwalk in idleness, not busy at work, but dbusybodies. 12 Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living.10

13 As for you, brothers, edo not grow weary in doing good. 14 If anyone does not obey what we say in this letter, take note of that person, and fhave nothing to do with him, that he may be ashamed. 15 gDo not regard him as an enemy, but hwarn him as a brother.

Benediction

16 Now may ithe Lord of peace himself jgive you peace at all times in every way. kThe Lord be with you all.

17 I, Paul, write lthis greeting with my own hand. This is the sign of genuineness in every letter of mine; it is the way I write. 18 mThe grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.


And yhe reasoned in the synagogue yevery Sabbath, and tried to persuade Jews and Greeks.

zWhen Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, Paul awas occupied with the word, btestifying to the Jews that the Christ was cJesus. And when they opposed and reviled him, dhe shook out his garments and said to them, eYour blood be on your own heads! fI am innocent. gFrom now on I will go to the Gentiles. And he left there and went to the house of a man named Titius hJustus, ia worshiper of God. His house was next door to the synagogue. jCrispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together kwith his entire household. And many of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized. And the Lord said to Paul lone night in ma vision, nDo not be afraid, but go on speaking and do not be silent, 10 nfor I am with you, and ono one will attack you to harm you, for pI have many in this city who are my people. 11 And he stayed a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

12 But when Gallio was qproconsul of Achaia, rthe Jews1 made a united attack on Paul and sbrought him before the tribunal, 13 saying, This man is persuading people to worship God contrary to tthe law. 14 But when Paul was about to open his mouth, Gallio said to the Jews, If it were a matter of wrongdoing or vicious ucrime, O Jews, I would have reason to accept your complaint. 15 But vsince it is a matter of questions about words and names and wyour own law, see to it yourselves. I refuse to be a judge of these things. 16 And he drove them from the tribunal. 17 And they all seized Sosthenes, the ruler of the synagogue, and beat him in front of the tribunal. But Gallio paid no attention to any of this.

Paul Returns to Antioch

18 After this, Paul stayed many days longer and then took leave of xthe brothers2 and set sail for Syria, and with him yPriscilla and Aquila. At zCenchreae ahe had cut his hair, for he was under a vow. 19 And they came to bEphesus, and he left them there, but che himself went into the synagogue and reasoned with the Jews. 20 When they asked him to stay for a longer period, he declined. 21 But on taking leave of them he said, I will return to you dif God wills, and he set sail from Ephesus.

22 When he had landed at Caesarea, he ewent up and greeted the church, and then went down to Antioch. 23 After spending some time there, he departed and fwent from one place to the next through the region of Galatia and Phrygia, gstrengthening all the disciples.

Apollos Speaks Boldly in Ephesus

24 Now a Jew named hApollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was an eloquent man, icompetent in the Scriptures. 25 He had been instructed in jthe way of the Lord. And kbeing fervent in spirit,3 he spoke and taught accurately the things concerning Jesus, though he knew only lthe baptism of John. 26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue, but when mPriscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained to him nthe way of God more accurately. 27 And when he wished to cross to oAchaia, pthe brothers encouraged him and qwrote to the disciples to welcome him. When he arrived, rhe greatly helped those who through grace had believed, 28 for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, showing by the Scriptures sthat the Christ was Jesus.