It is the great comfort of the servants of Christ to have their own conscience and the consciences of others witness for them that they set out with sincere designs and right principles, preached the Word in its fullness and that their witnessing was not in vain in the Lord. Let not the Ambassadors of Christ be daunted that they must often meet opposition and persecution at the preaching of Christ, but continue faithfully knowing that they shall meet the fruit of their labors at the coming of Christ.
I Thessalonians 2
1 For yourselves, brethren, know our entrance in unto you, that it was not in vain:
2 But even after that we had suffered before, and were shamefully entreated, as ye know, at Philippi, we were bold in our God to speak unto you the gospel of God with much contention.
3 For our exhortation was not of deceit, nor of uncleanness, nor in guile:
4 But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts.
5 For neither at any time used we flattering words, as ye know, nor a cloke of covetousness; God is witness:
6 Nor of men sought we glory, neither of you, nor yet of others, when we might have been burdensome, as the apostles of Christ.
7 But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children:
8 So being affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us.
9 For ye remember, brethren, our labour and travail: for labouring night and day, because we would not be chargeable unto any of you, we preached unto you the gospel of God.
10 Ye are witnesses, and God also, how holily and justly and unblameably we behaved ourselves among you that believe:
11 As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children,
12 That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory.
13 For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.
14 For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus: for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have of the Jews:
15 Who both killed the Lord Jesus, and their own prophets, and have persecuted us; and they please not God, and are contrary to all men:
16 Forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they might be saved, to fill up their sins alway: for the wrath is come upon them to the uttermost.
17 But we, brethren, being taken from you for a short time in presence, not in heart, endeavoured the more abundantly to see your face with great desire.
18 Wherefore we would have come unto you, even I Paul, once and again; but Satan hindered us.
19 For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?
20 For ye are our glory and joy.
I Thessalonians 2:1 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:2 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:3 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:4-6 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:7-8 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:9 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:10 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:11-12 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:13 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:14-16 – J. Vernon McGee
I Thessalonians 2:17-20 – J. Vernon McGee
1 Thessalonians 2:1-12 – The Fruit of Unsparing Labor
Paul preached in great conflict of soul because of his passionate desire for the salvation of men. In this, many of the notable servants of God have shared; and we shall not attain to the great end of our ministry unless the seeds we sow are steeped in prayers and tears. The Apostle viewed the gospel as a sacred deposit left with him by God on man’s behalf, I Thessalonians 2:4. Do we sufficiently realize that as Christ is our Trustee, entrusted with God’s gift for us, so we are executors of His bequests to our fellow-men, who will have serious charges to bring against us if we hoard for ourselves what was meant for them? The questions which should sustain and quicken us are: “What does God think of my service?—Is He pleased?”
Combined with Paul’s strength of purpose there were the sweetness and tenderness of a nurse. Self-denying labor for his own maintenance took from his eyes their needed sleep, and was another proof of his sincerity and devotion. There was no harm in receiving gifts, but Paul was most anxious to do nothing that would invalidate his testimony, or be unworthy of the Master he served. Admirable example for us all! —Through the Bible Day by Day
1 Thessalonians 2:13-20 – The Apostle’s Glory and Joy
The Christian worker always should wait on God till he gets the word of the message. There is an essential difference between delivering a sermon or an address and delivering a message. The latter is direct, eager; you wait to be sure it is understood; you expect an answer. A gospel message works in those who believe. That its ultimate effect will be to bring us into collision with the world-spirit goes without saying. For this conflict the Christian must be prepared in advance.
The separation between this true, strong, loving soul and his converts was a bereavement, though only for an hour, and his heart longed to be with them again. He clung to them the more tenaciously because he had been cast out by his Jewish brethren, and also because he looked for a great revenue of joy and glory to accrue to the Savior’s name. His one purpose seems to have been to accumulate garlands of saved souls, as children make garlands of flowers in spring, that he might lay them at the feet of the Redeemer. Satan hinders, but Jesus helps and smiles His benediction. —Through the Bible Day by Day
1 Thessalonians 2:16 – JEWS THWARTED GENTILE SALVATIONS – “In my Bible devotions this morning I was reading in first Thessalonians and came across verse 16 of chapter 2 and wondered how it was that Paul could lay blame at the feet of the religious Jews for being the cause of a number of Gentiles remaining unsaved. If Calvinism is true, how could the religious Jews possibly thwart God in saving any Gentiles if they were of the elect? I would have read this passage of Scripture many times since becoming aware of the inconsistencies of Calvinism, but this morning is the first time I remember verse 16 speaking to me specifically refuting the ‘I’ of ‘TULIP.’ Obviously, the Apostle Paul thought it possible that people who could (might) be saved (if given the opportunity to hear the message of salvation) wouldn’t be saved if that message was somehow blocked from their hearing. Obviously also, Paul knew nothing of people being irresistibly regenerated and imparted with faith previous to hearing and believing the Gospel. – Hughie Seaborn
I Thessalonians 2:19—What is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye?
The tender heart of the apostle suffered keenly in his enforced absence from these beloved converts. He had cherished them as a nurse her children; he would have gladly imparted to them his own soul. Not once nor twice he had sought to see them again, but had been hindered by malign spiritual forces that were very real to him. He found comfort, however, in the thought that, at the Lord’s coming, they and he would be re-united, and that they would be his joy, as now they were his hope. Now they lit his hope to an intenser passion; then they would intensify his joy to a more exquisite fulness.
But there is a further thought. The souls whom he had won for Jesus were to constitute his crown. It was as though they would be woven into a wreath like that given to the ancient athlete, and placed on his brow as he emerged from the terrific conflict of his life — not to be worn there, but cast forthwith at the feet of his Lord. What an incentive was this! Each soul plucked from the enemy would be another jewel for the Master’s crown, and herein a fresh source of heavenly blessedness to himself.
I remember Mr. Spurgeon telling of an old Christian woman in his almshouses, who persisted in saying loving thoughts about her beloved pastor to his face, at which he greatly demurred. He feared that she was making more of him than of Christ. But she said sweetly, “It is written in the Song, ‘Thou, O Solomon, must have a thousand, and those that keep the fruit thereof two hundred’; so, dear pastor, you must have your two hundred.” Yes, it will be so; we shall partake with Jesus of the fish that we have caught; we shall have fellowship in his exceeding joy over the saved. (Meyer)