Healthy Christianity-1 Thessalonians 1:4-10

1 Thessalonians 1:4-10 “For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, 5 because our gospel came to you not simply with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. 6 You became imitators of us and of the Lord; in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with the joy given by the Holy Spirit. 7 And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia. 8 The Lord’s message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia — your faith in God has become known everywhere. Therefore we do not need to say anything about it, 9 for they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us. They tell 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 rescues us from the coming wrath.”

1 Tessalonicesi 1:4-10 “Conosciamo, fratelli amati da Dio, la vostra elezione 5 Infatti il nostro vangelo non vi è stato annunciato soltanto con parole, ma anche con potenza, con lo Spirito Santo e con piena convinzione; infatti sapete come ci siamo comportati fra voi, per il vostro bene. 6 Voi siete divenuti imitatori nostri e del Signore, avendo ricevuto la parola in mezzo a molte sofferenze, con la gioia che dà lo Spirito Santo, 7 tanto da diventare un esempio per tutti i credenti della Macedonia e dell’Acaia. 8 Infatti da voi la parola del Signore ha echeggiato non soltanto nella Macedonia e nell’Acaia, ma anzi la fama della fede che avete in Dio si è sparsa in ogni luogo, di modo che non abbiamo bisogno di parlarne; 9 perché essi stessi raccontano quale sia stata la nostra venuta fra voi, e come vi siete convertiti dagli idoli a Dio per servire il Dio vivente e vero, 10 e per aspettare dai cieli il Figlio suo che egli ha risuscitato dai morti; cioè, Gesù che ci libera dall’ira imminente.”


     Out of all the churches that Paul visited or founded, the Thessalonian church stood out as a prime example of a healthy growing church. He actually says in verse 8 that he didn’t need to make any comment about their faith as they had truly embraced the Gospel and carried it to their region.

     There are some things in this passage that are worth noting about how Paul and his companions operated in the ministry of evangelism and discipleship. First, their message was not presented with philosophical nuances but with the plain Gospel message confirmed by the power of the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction. Second, Paul and his companions identified themselves with those they served like the Thessalonian church who demonstrated a genuine faith and was willing to suffer. It is truly the power of the Holy Spirit when believers can express the joy of the Lord in the most difficult circumstances. Third, they fully embraced the mandate to spread the news of the Gospel throughout Macedonia and Achaia. Those evangelized had now become the missionaries. Fourth, the testimonies of the Thessalonian believers were being reported back to Paul. Can you imagine the spiritual satisfaction Paul felt when he heard the testimonies of those evangelized by the Thessalonians? Fifth, they lived their faith with the full knowledge that Jesus would return someday and their suffering would come to an end. What a great testimony of a healthy church and Paul’s ministry of evangelism and discipleship!

Pray with me: Lord, I look at this church and see wonderful possibilities and motivation for my life. Help me to live out my spiritual life as an imitator of the Lord and His servants.

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