🎯TOPIC: STEADFASTNESS AMIDST CHALLENGES
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✝️ TEXT: 1 Thessalonians 3: 1-13(NKJV)
3:1. Therefore, when we could no longer endure it, we thought it good to be left in Athens alone,
3:2. and sent Timothy, our brother and minister of God, and our fellow laborer in the gospel of Christ, to establish you and encourage you concerning your faith,
3:3. that no one should be shaken by these afflictions; for you yourselves know that we are appointed to this.
3:4. For, in fact, we told you before when we were with you that we would suffer tribulation, just as it happened, and you know.
3:5. For this reason, when I could no longer endure it, I sent to know your faith, lest by some means the tempter had tempted you, and our labor might be in vain.
3:6. But now that Timothy has come to us from you, and brought us good news of your faith and love, and that you always have good remembrance of us, greatly desiring to see us, as we also [to see] you —
3:7. therefore, brethren, in all our affliction and distress we were comforted concerning you by your faith.
3:8. For now we live, if you stand fast in the Lord.
3:9. For what thanks can we render to God for you, for all the joy with which we rejoice for your sake before our God,
3:10. night and day praying exceedingly that we may see your face and perfect what is lacking in your faith?
3:11. Now may our God and Father Himself, and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way to you.
3:12. And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we [do] to you,
3:13. so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints.
✝️🗒️STUDY: Life is full of challenges ranging from insecurity, bad governance, economic meltdown, pandemics, political and economic manipulations, to stiff resistance to the gospel, etc. The Thessalonian church suffered a lot of challenges for their faith and were exhorted to remain steadfast. Similarly, we are encouraged not to be disturbed and led astray by the daily afflictions that confront us and our Christian testimony. Jesus told us that they will exist but we should be of good cheer, for he has overcome the world (John 16: 33). He that endures to the end will be saved.
Note that Timothy was sent to strengthen, comfort and encourage the Thessalonian brethren in the faith due to their afflictions (v.2). Paul and others also continued to earnestly pray daily for the Thessalonian Christians. The content of their prayer was for them to: Overflow in Christian love, be strengthened and established by God, be faultless, pure and holy at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. This is worthy of emulation especially today when our societies are becoming more self-centered with reduced Christian mentorship. Learn to encourage and pray for other Christians, so that they will be established in the faith. Determine to stand firm in your faith, so that you will not lose your crown.
✝️🙏 PRAYER: Father, help me and other brethren to be steadfast in you amidst the challenges of life, in Jesus name. Amen.
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