Acts + Letters Lesson 18 Day 2

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1 Thessalonians 1 with Acts 17:1-10

Questions for Acts and Letters of the Apostles Lesson 18

Paul gave thanks for their faith.

“This letter is full of interest because it is certainly among the first of those which have been preserved for us from the pen of Paul. It was the first he wrote to European Christians, and in it the fundamental things of the Christian life are very clearly set forth.” (G. Campbell Morgan) via Enduring Word

Instead of dwelling on those who rejected the good news, Paul focused on those who believed.

3. Paul commends them for these characteristics:

The Thessalonians were famous for these four things:
(1) They turned wholeheartedly to God.
(2) They abandoned worshiping false gods (idols).
(3) They became passionate servants of Christ.
(4) They were eagerly anticipating the heavenly Son, Jesus. (Footnote 1 Thes. 1:10 TPT)

—Work of faith, labor of love and perseverance of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Thes. 1:3)

—Unwavering [persevering] hope in our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Thes. 1:3) (Hope sustained them through persecution.)

—Imitators (followers) of Paul, Silas and Timothy and of the Lord Himself. (1 Thes. 1:6)

—Welcomed and received the word with joy of the Holy Spirit despite persecution (Acts 17:11;1 Thes. 1:6)

—They set an example of faithfulness for many others throughout most of Greece and beyond. (1 Thes. 1:7)

—Turned to God from idols to serve a living and true God. (1 Thes. 1:9)

1 Corinthians 13:12-13

Until the day God speaks to us as he spoke to Moses and we fully understand everything, we hold on to three things that will last forever — faith, hope and love. Love is the greatest and most important because faith and hope spring from love. (Paraphrased)

4. An encounter with our Savior transforms.

These believers met three men who shared Jesus with them, and it transformed their lives from idol worshippers to disciples of Jesus. Despite the persecution they witnessed, they remained strong in their witness, passionately faithful to Jesus and each other, and examples to their nation.

Personal application

So many mentors and teachers come to mind. My parents set a good example for me from the time I was born.

As a preteen, the pastor’s wife in our church had a heart for missions and taught a small group of us girls. We memorized long passages of scripture and, among other studies, we wrote a paper on the missionary journeys of Paul. I’d forgotten about that until this question.

A more recent example was an older woman who came to the US from Holland when she was a young woman. She met Jesus and “grew up” in a small home church. They did a wonderful job of discipling her and her entire life, she has mentored others. Last year, I met a woman who said she got saved because someone took her to hear my friend speak. She’s been following Jesus ever since. My friend is nearly 90 now and still has a strong desire to minister to others.

5. Their joy of the Holy Spirit and their example (vs. 8-9)

Despite persecution and their recent conversion from pagan to Christian, their witness spread far and wide. What an amazing example of the Gospel’s transforming power.

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Unless noted, all Scripture from public domain WEB translation.
My answers to BSF Bible Study Fellowship questions Acts + Letters of the Apostles Lesson 18 Day 2