Thursday Study-1 Thessalonians
Leader: Pastor Warskow
God's Word Produces Faithfulness - 1:1-10
The Work of a Faithful Pastor - 2:1-12
Faithful Endurance in Persecution - 2:13-3:9
Living to Please God - 3:10-4:12
The Coming of the Lord - 4:13-5:11
Final Instructions - 5:12-28
PENDING God's Word Produces Faithfulness
1 Thessalonians - 1:1-10
The Work of a Faithful Pastor - 2:1-12
1 Thessalonians- 2:1-12
Faithful Endurance in Persecution
A. God's Word Works Faithfulness in Persecution (2:13-15a)
1 Thessalonians 2:13 - 3:9
1. Why could Paul say that what he had taught them was not the word of men but the word of God? Is that true today?
2. In v. 14 Paul says, "the same things." If the persecutions in Thessalonica were like those in Judea, what did they include?
3. V. 14: "Your own countrymen" who in Thessalonica were the instigators of the persecution? (Acts 17:5a)
4. Agree or Disagree: You can tell how faithful a Christian is in his use of God's Word by the way he reacts to trials.
B. The Jews Opposed God's Word to Their Own Condemnation (2:15b,16)
1. V. 15: "they displease God" Why is this an understatement?
2. V. 16: "the wrath of God has come upon them" What does Paul mean by this statement about the Jews? Why would God do this?
3. Agree or Disagree: Since God has hardened the Jews in unbelief, it is useless to do mission work among them today.
C. Paul Sent Timothy to Strengthen the Thessalonians (2:17-3:3a)
1. V. 17 "torn away" How did this happen?
2. V. 18 "Satan stopped us" How did Satan accomplish this?
3. Agree or Disagree: It is quite natural that a pastor who moves away from a congregation would still have a longing to see and to visit those people whom he once served, but he shouldn't.
4. Agree or Disagree: Christians find strength in numbers.
D. Paul Feared for Their Faith Because He Knew Satan's Power (3:3b-5)
1. V. 3 "we were destined for them." When we remember that God's love and wisdom underlie every divine appointment, what do we also know about our trials? (see Romans 8:28) So, what is the Christian's attitude toward trials? (see Romans 5:3-5)
2. V. 5 "our efforts might have been useless." Why can't these words be understood in the sense that Paul was only concerned about wasted time and effort? (see 2:8,19,20)
3. Agree or Disagree: We know that all our trials come to us with God's permission and that under his guidance they serve our good. This makes it easy for us to bear them.
E. Timothy's Report Gave Paul Great Joy (3:6-9)
1. V. 6 "good news about your faith and love" What was the good news Timothy brought about their faith? (1:6; 2:13) What was the good news Timothy brought about their love? (1:7,8; 2:12)
2. Agree or Disagree: When we know that other Christians are suffering the same trials we are, it helps to bears our troubles.
3. Why was the situation in Thessalonica important to all Paul's work? (See 1:8)
4. V. 9 "How can we thank" Why did words fail Paul when he thought about all that Timothy's report meant?
5. Agree or Disagree: Satan's ways of undermining the faithfulness of people in our congregation today here in Lancaster are less effective than the persecution with which he troubled the Thessalonians.
LIVING TO PLEASE GOD
A. Paul Prays that God would Increase Their Faith and Love (3:10-13)
1 THESSALONIANS 3:10-4:12
1. v. 10 "what was lacking in your faith" might refer to 4 things: weakness of faith, incomplete instruction, forgetfulness, sluggishness. Which of these fit the Thessalonians?
2. Agree or Disagree: A Christian is always growing toward perfection in this life.
3. v. 11 "clear the way" What would God have to clear out of the way for Paul to come to them?
4. v. 12 "everyone else" Who is included in this exhortation?
5. v. 13 "that you may be blameless and holy" Some say this teaches that our works of love make us holy and blameless when Jesus comes. Why is this a wrong understanding of this verse? (see Romans 3:28)
B. Paul Urges Them to Live More and More According to God's Will (4:1,2)
1. v. 1 "in the Lord Jesus" How does this put Paul's asking and urging in a totally different light?
2. What different motives does a Christian have for living according to God's will? According to Hebrews 11:6 which is only God-pleasing motive?
C. Paul Reviews God's Will in the Matter of Sex and Marriage (4:3-8)
1. V. 3 Why do we need to keep our distance from every situation which tempts us to sexual immorality?
2. v. 4 "in a way that is holy and honorable" Why is it important for us to remember that behind God's will lies his wisdom and his love?
3. What reasons in v. 6 and 7 do we have to avoid this kind of evil in our society?
4. v. 8 As Paul concludes this subject, why does he make special mention of God giving us the Holy Spirit?
5. Agree or Disagree: The fact that our society is more tolerant of sexual immorality means that Christians have to accept new laws which reflect this change.
D. Paul Exhorts Them to Let Brotherly Love Lead Them to Avoid Some Common Practices of Their Neighbors (4:9-12)
1. v. 10 How had the Thessalonians shown brotherly love to the believers in Macedonia? How do we show brotherly love?
2. v. 11,12 "work with your hands" What good reason does Paul give them to do manual labor?
Why is it so important that the Christians win the respect of unbelievers and not be known as beggars?
3. Agree or Disagree: Paul urges the Thessalonians to work with their hands so that they are dependent on no one. The welfare system in our country violates this Christian principle.
THE COMING OF THE LORD
A. Believers Who Have Died Will Not Be Left Behind When Christ Comes (4:13-18)
1. v. 13 "fall asleep" What is Paul emphasizing by referring to the death of believers with these words? Why can it be said that believers who have died are only sleeping?
2. Agree or Disagree: "He fell asleep" or "He passed away" are just euphemisms by which people avoid the painful fact of death.
3. v. 15 "will certainly not precede" What was the point on which the Thessalonians were ignorant and which was causing them to sorrow hopelessly?
4. v. 17 "in the clouds" What aspect of Jesus' return is Paul here emphasizing? How do you that this refers to believers taken to heaven?
5. v. 18 "encourage each other" Who else besides the pastor is charged with comforting the bereaved?
6. Besides saying "I'm sorry," what can a believer say to a fellow Christian during their bereavement?
B. The Lord's Coming will be an Inescapable Disaster for Many (5:1-3)
1. What does Paul mean when he says that judgment day will come as a thief in the night?
So what is true of anyone who says he knows when Christ will return?
2. Evaluate this situation: A friend of yours insists that the following is true: Since God is a God of love who wants all people to be saved, we can assume that in his grace he will give another chance to those not prepared for his coming.
C. Put on God's Spiritual Gifts so that You Won't Fall into the Spiritual Sleep of the World (5:4-11)
1. v. 4 "like a thief" In what way will Jesus' coming not be like a thief for a believer?
2. v. 5 What do the pictures "light/day" and "darkness/night" usually mean in the Bible?
3. v. 8 What are God's gifts to us that he wants us to put on as we await Jesus' return?
4. V. 11 Why did their situation require constant encouragement and building up?
How are the members of our congregation different from the Thessalonians?
Final Instructions - 5:12-28
1. v. 12 Which group of God's representatives is he talking about here?
2. What words in v. 13 does Paul use to encourage the Thessalonians to honor their pastors, regardless of their personality?
3. v. 15 How is this idea so different from what comes natural to us?
4. v. 16-18 What advice would you have, especially for younger Christians, about how to put these words into practice?
5. v. 19 How do people put out the Spirit's fire?
6. How can we keep that from happening in our congregation?
What essential truths does Paul once again lay in front of the recipients?
8. What is the importance of his exhortations in the closing?