The letters of Paul to the Thessalonian believers not only provide insight into the challenges faced by one of the early Christian churches but also allow a glimpse into the great pastoral heart of the stalwart evangelist. Yes he endured beatings stoning and imprisonment on his missionary journeys—and even rejoiced that he was found worthy to suffer for his Lord. Yet in the midst of his own trials he longed to nurture and encourage those converts who were experiencing persecution as well.

Intertwined among such familiar themes as the Second Advent the resurrection of believers church discipline and the man of lawlessness Paul’s recurring emphasis is how to live while waiting for Jesus to return. It may come as a surprise to Christians steeped in a postmodern culture but holiness—separation from the ways of the world and commitment to the ways of God—and the requisite dependence upon God’s power are commanded.

This user-friendly devotional commentary divides the text of these two letters into short passages followed by exegetical explanation and practical application. Though these messages were penned nearly 2 000 years ago the apostle’s words are just as relevant to Christians now as they were to the fledgling church in the first century.

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