B1 And for this reason when we could no longer take it, we thought it good to be left at Athens alone, and sent Timothy, our brother minister of God, and our fellow worker in the gospel of Christ, to strengthen you and comfort you in your faith, so that no one would be disturbed by these afflictions, for you yourselves know that we all are placed into this. For truly, when we were with you, we told you ahead of time that we would suffer afflictions, even as it happened and as you know. For this reason when I couldn't put it off any longer I sent so that I might know about your faith, lest somehow the tempter having tempted you and our labor turn out to be futile. (1 Thessalonians 3:1-5, WEL)
B2 Therefore, when we could bear it no longer, we were well pleased to be left behind at Athens alone, and sent Timothy, our brother and minister of God, and our fellow worker in the gospel of Christ, in order to establish you and exhort you concerning your faith, that no one should be disturbed by these afflictions; for you yourselves know that we have been destined for this. For even when we were with you, we were telling you in advance that we were going to be afflicted, just as it has come to pass, and as you know. Because of this, when I could bear it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith, lest somehow the tempter had tempted you, and our labor be in vain. (1 Thessalonians 3:1-5, EMTV)
B1 1 Thessalonians 3:1
C1 Paul longs to see them again.
C2 He was growing impatient from concern about their wellbeing
C3 He stayed in Athens
B2 1 Thessalonians 3:2
C1 Timothy sent to them.
E1 Brother in Christ
E2 Minister of God
E3 Fellow worker in the Gospel of Christ
E1 To strengthen you
E2 To encourage you
F1 The Greek word is parakaleo.
G1 Comfort them in their trials
G2 Encourage them to continue thus this would include comfort as well. This is the most likely meaning.
B3 1 Thessalonians 3:3
D1 The Greek word is saino.
D2 It means
E1 Shaken up--to cause mental/emotional agony
D3 His concern was that the trials and persecutions they were facing would cause them to abandon the faith.
D4 We need to encourage one another.
D1 The Greek word is thlipsis.
D2 It means
E2 The type of pressure that would be emotional, physical, mental, etc. that would cause pain.
F1 Soft as in loss of job or denial of benefits that all others receive.
F2 Hard as in jail or torture
E1 Paul forewarned them.
E2 It is common in the Christian life.
E3 Jesus, the Apostles, and other believers experienced it.
D1 The Greek word is keimai.
D2 It means
E1 To lie as in to be placed down on something.
F1 The spoon lies on the table.
F2 "He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay." (Matthew 28:6, NKJV)
E2 Figurative it means appoint
F1 "Then Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary His mother, "Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and for a sign which will be spoken against." (Luke 2:34, EMTV)
F2 "Then they will hand you over to tribulation and they will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations, on account of My name." (Matthew 24:9, EMTV)
F3 "If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you. Remember the word which I said to you, 'A servant is not greater than his master.' If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for My name's sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me." (John 15:19-21, EMTV)
B4 1 Thessalonians 3:4
C1 We may be appointed for difficulties from non-Christians here, but "...God did not appoint us to wrath, but to the obtaining of salvation through our Lord Jesus Chris." (1 Thessalonians 5:9, EMTV)
C2 The Thessalonians had seen and experienced persecution of the brethren when they were there preaching the Gospel.
C3 This is different than the easy, soft, false Gospel they is regularly preached today.
B5 1 Thessalonians 3:5
C1 The Tempter
D1 The Greek word is peirazo.
D2 It means
C1 Test--as a teacher would test to know the pupils knowledge, what they have learned. Satan is this tempter and wishes to cause affliction and trouble of all sorts to try and break us down--to abandon the faith. Consider Job in Job 1:1 and the Lord Jesus--"And approaching Him, the tempter said, "If You are the Son of God, command that these stones may become bread." (Matthew 4:3, EMTV)
D3 He does this by
E2 Twisting the truth
E3 Appealing to lusts of the flesh and mind
E6 Physical, mental, emotional, financial, religious, etc. abuse
D4 The best ways to avoid and stay true to God is to
E1 Read and study the Bible (2 Timothy 2:15)
E2 Pray (Matthew 26:41)
E3 Encourage others (Galatians 6:2)
E4 Allow others to encourage you. Have another person you can talk to. You don't need to tell all, just ask for prayer and for the person to listen and for you to listen in return. (Galatians 5:13-14)
E5 Confess failures and sin (James 5:16)
E6 Know your weaknesses, so then you can flee temptation, avoiding it. (1 Corinthians 10:13)
E7 Resist, so leave the area, start doing something else, etc. (James 4:7)
E8 When you sin, do not blame others but take the responsibility. Compare Adam who failed by blaming his wife and God (Genesis 3:12). Compare Aaron who made the golden calf (Exodus 32:24).
E9 Be persistent and consistent. (Colossians 1:23 and James 1:12)
E10 When you sin, do not be discouraged or give up. Consider Peter who denied Jesus. He was forgiven and still used of God (John 18:25-27 and John 21:17).
E11 Remember that Jesus himself was tempted, and how He resisted. (Hebrews 2:18, Hebrews 4:15)
E12 Do the Scriptures, that is, obey God's rules. (James 1:22)
E13 Stop sinning (Ephesians 4:28)
E14 Avoid evil people who may encourage you to sin (2 Corinthians 6:14)
E15 There are rewards for not sinning.
F1 First, you don't sin.
F2 Secondly, a crown from God. This is something we receive on our judgment day. (James 1:12)
E16 Be aware that the devil wants you to sin and will try anything to get you to sin. (1 Peter 5:8)
C2 Futile/in vain
D1 The Greek word is kenos.
D2 It means
E1 Vain as in unsuccessful
E2 Empty as in what you have is now gone.
D3 In this case it would mean the Gospel was preached, the people believed and led a Christian life, then totally fell away. This would be Paul's worst fear.
D4 The Holy Spirit was sent by Jesus to be our helper.
E1 "My little children, these things I write to you, that you may not sin. And if someone should sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous." (1 John 2:1, EMTV)
E2 How God helps us
F1 Helps us to remember Scripture
F2 Does not leave or forsake us
F3 Prays (intercedes for us)
F4 Loves us
F5 Chastens us (to correct our wrong behavior and for us to repent)
F6 Strengthens us (Philippians 4:13)
F7 Gives grace, that is, something we do not deserve to help us resist and flee temptation. (Hebrews 4:16)
F8 Reminds us that He is stronger than the devil (1 John 4:4)
F9 Given us a Psalm to help us (Psalm 23)
G1 Gives peace and rest
G3 Leads on the righteous path
G4 Remains close beside us even while we are dying
G5 Stays with us when trouble comes
G6 Blesses us even when our enemies surround us
G7 God's goodness and mercy are applied to me