Rev. Matt Ulmer, pastor at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Bishop, TX joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10.
The first letter to the church in Thessalonica is one of the earliest, and very likely the earliest, books of the New Testament. Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy wrote to the young church to encourage them to continue to stand firm in Christ even amidst persecution. Following his usual pattern for letters, Paul greets the Thessalonians in the grace and peace that come only from the true God. He speaks of his thanksgiving to God in his prayers for their faith, love, and hope centered in Christ Jesus. In Him, God had chosen the Thessalonians by the Gospel, the word that is powerful by the working of the Holy Spirit. That powerful Word made them imitators of the Lord and His servants, as the word received affliction produced great joy. This provided an example throughout Macedonia, how the word of the Lord produced fruit among the Thessalonians. They had turned from dead idols to the living God, in whom Christians have the hope of resurrection on the Last Day because of Christ’s resurrection on the Last Day. All who have such faith in Him are delivered from the wrath to come.
“Christ Is Surely Coming” is a mini-series on Sharper Iron that journeys through the two epistles to the Thessalonians. Through these two letters, Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy encouraged the young church in Thessalonica to stand firm in the midst of persecution as they eagerly waited for Christ’s second coming. This Word of God still strengthens the Church today to live now with faith, hope, and love, even as we long for the Day of Christ’s return, the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come.
Sharper Iron, hosted by Rev. Timothy Appel, looks at the text of Holy Scripture both in its broad context and its narrow detail, all for the sake of proclaiming Christ crucified and risen for sinners. Two pastors engage with God’s Word to sharpen not only their own faith and knowledge, but the faith and knowledge of all who listen.
Sharper Iron is underwritten by Lutheran Church Extension Fund, where your investments help support the work of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Visit lcef.org.
1 Thessalonians 1:1-10
1 Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
Grace to you and peace.
The Thessalonians’ Faith and Example
2 We give thanks to God always for all of you, constantly[a] mentioning you in our prayers, 3 remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. 4 For we know, brothers[b] loved by God, that he has chosen you, 5 because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction. You know what kind of men we proved to be among you for your sake. 6 And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you received the word in much affliction, with the joy of the Holy Spirit, 7 so that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia. 8 For not only has the word of the Lord sounded forth from you in Macedonia and Achaia, but your faith in God has gone forth everywhere, so that we need not say anything. 9 For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10 and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.
- 1 Thessalonians 1:2 Or without ceasing
- 1 Thessalonians 1:4 Or brothers and sisters. In New Testament usage, depending on the context, the plural Greek word adelphoi (translated “brothers”) may refer either to brothers or to brothers and sisters
English Standard Version (ESV)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.