Home   e-Library       中文 
e-Library Home |  Browse By Category |  Study the Bible    
 (Thessalonians, Timothy, and Titus)
Lesson 3 The Faithful Minister (1Thess 2:1-16)
TOC | Previous | Next

Lesson 3

I.       Observation

A.     Outline

Boldness in Conflict (2:1-2)

Genuine Preaching (2:3-6)

Genuine Conduct (2:7-12)

Thanksgiving (2:13-16)

B.     Key Words/Phrases

Bold, gospel, much conflict, exhortation, error, uncleanness, deceit, approved by God, not as pleasing men, but God, flattering words, covetousness, witness, gentle, nursing mother, affectionately longing, dear, labor and toil, devoutly, justly, blamelessly, father, thank God without ceasing.

II.    General Analysis

1. Paul and his fellow preachers.

2a. “Not in vain” (1); “did not come from error or uncleanness, nor was it in deceit” (3); “not as pleasing men” (4); “neither…did we use flattering words, nor a cloak for covetousness” (5); “nor did we seek glory from men” (6).

2b. Gentle, as a nursing mother cherishes her own children (7); affectionately longing, impart to you not only the gospel of God, but also our own lives (8); labor and toil (9); devoutly, justly, blamelessly (10); exhorted, and comforted, and charged, as a father does his own children (11).

III.  Segment Analysis

1. It was not in vain (1). In other words, their preaching was not weak or ineffective.

2a. Their boldness came from their reliance on God (“bold in our God”) (2). It is God who gives His witnesses courage.

2b. It demonstrates that his preaching is not “in vain” (1), but that God’s power is at work. His persistence in suffering also shows that the message he preaches is genuinely God’s word, which is worth risking one’s life for. Furthermore, his boldness serves as an encouragement to other believers to also preach the gospel without fear (Php 1:12-14).

3.       1. Error—Preaching a false gospel will only mislead others and lead them to destruction (Mt 15:14).

          2. Uncleanness—A preacher with impure motives will seek his own good at the expense of his followers.

          3. Deceit—A false image of piety can only deceive people temporarily. When the person’s pretense is uncovered, he becomes a stumbling block to the believers.

4a. They have been approved by God to be worthy to carry out the gospel (4; 1Tim 1:12).

4b. God tests our hearts. We need to be faithful to God in our preaching because God continually evaluates our inner motives. It is to Him, rather than anyone else, that we have to be personally accountable.

5. The apostles did not make demands on the believers based on their apostolic authority.

7. Instead of ruling over the believers with authority (6), the apostles were gentle and kind toward the believers. Just as a parent loves his/her child without any ulterior motive, the apostles served the believers out of heartfelt concern for them.

8a. The gospel of God and their own lives.

9. The missionaries worked to support themselves while they were preaching in Thessalonica.

10. As ministers of the gospel, we need to aim for pure and upright conduct before God and before others. In fact, this is no more than what God expects of every believer. In doing so, we can please God, be an example to those who hear the gospel, and silence those who slander the gospel (cf. 1Tim 4:15-16; 1Pet 2:15; 3:15-16)

11. To walk worthy of God means to live in conformity with the likeness of the One who has called us (Eph 4:20-24; 1Pet 1:15-16).

12. They thank God without ceasing because the Thessalonian believers welcomed the gospel message not as the word of men but as the word of God (13).

13. When we listen to the message of the Scriptures, we must accept it as the word of God even though it is delivered to us through men. Only with this correct attitude will we not give glory to men or reject the word of God when we see the shortcomings of the preachers. We will build our faith solely on Christ.

14. They have experienced the effective workings of God’s word in them (13).

16. They killed both the Lord Jesus and their own prophets, and persecuted the apostles. They did not please God and were contrary to all men (i.e. hostile to all men), forbidding the apostles to speak to the Gentiles that they may be saved. They were heaping on themselves the full extent of God’s wrath (15-16).

PDF Download