Summary of passages: 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12: We (Paul and his followers) have instructed you how to live to please God and we urge you to do this more and more. It is God’s will that: you should be sanctified; avoid sexual immorality; learn to control your own body in a holy way and not lustfully; and no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him.
The Lord will punish for such sins since God has called you to live a holy life. You reject God himself if you reject His instruction.
Love your brothers and do so more and more.
Lead a quiet life, mind your own business, and work with your hands so you will be respected by non-believers and independent.
1 Thessalonians 5:12-28: We (Paul speaking again) ask you to respect authority, those over you and who admonish you. Love them. [I see this as an extension of God who admonishes us]. Live in peace with each other. Warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, and be patient with everyone. Don’t seek revenge and be kind to one another.
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will. Test everything (including prophecies) and hold on to the good and reject the evil. Do not extinguish the Spirit’s fire that burns in you and others.
May God sanctify you and you be kept blameless as we wait the coming of Jesus. Pray for us. Grace be with you.
10a) You should be santified; avoid sexual immorality; control your own body that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the non-believers; no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. Live a holy life. Love each other more and more. Lead a quiet life, minding your own business and work with your hands so you will not be dependent on others.
b) Sexual immorality is approved of and almost glorified by reality TV and celebrities. Porn is everywhere. People do take advantage of one another. Loving each other in discouraged. Everyone is in everyone else’s business, especially with the Internet. Working hard with your hands (earning an honest living) is a hard concept to find these days where the younger generations expect everything to be given to them by Mommy and Daddy.
c) Personal Question. My answer: Live a more holy life and love more.
11a) All in my opinion. We often resent our bosses and those who admonish us. Respect is usually the furthest word from our minds. Live in peace (how many wars are going on all around us?). Encouraging words are not as frequent as harsh words. Patient is not something commonly found in our society. Being kind when we’re not in the mood.
Hardest: being joyful always, praying continually, giving thanks. I know I need to work on this.
Avoiding evil when it’s everywhere and holding onto the good is always difficult.
b) God helps us by traversing our paths at our side faithfully. He sanctifies us with the Holy Spirit, which helps us in times of our greatest need. But we must pray, be joyful, and be grateful always in all circumstances to God and what He gives and does for us. We must constantly remember His grace, mercy, and presence in our lives if we are to have any hope of keeping His will for us.
Conclusions: Another great lesson on how to live a Godly life. I think most people don’t know where to start. Or life gets so cumbersome that they fall into the ways of the crowd. Here are some great passages on what to do in life, which should be intuitive but often is not.
I need constant reminder of these things. Be patient. Be joyful. Be grateful. Pray. Love and encourage one another. Words for my bathroom mirror.
Life is too full of distractions these days so we must be vigilant and grounded in the simple truths of life if we are to have any hope of becoming more Christ-like.