2 Thessalonians 2:13-17 13 But we ought always to thank God for you, brothers and sisters loved by the Lord, because God chose you as firstfruits to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth. 14 He called you to this through our gospel, that you might share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
15 So then, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold fast to the teachings[b] we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter.
16 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, 17 encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.
How does it make you feel when you realize your spouse or significant other has selected you, above all others they have met to spend the rest of their lives?
Sheila was scrolling through facebook looking at all her friends that have recently had babies and Tomme was looking with her. He thought she was picking her new baby. Tomme narrowed down the search to Arizona and one other baby He said either one of these will work!
Wouldn't it be great if we could select just the people we wanted to be around in our lifetime nobody else? Can you imagine someone loving you so much they desired you to be theirs even before you were born?
We should look at what this young congregation was going through. How would they face the unpredictable days ahead?
One theologian writes this:
"The term translated by the NIV as “unsettled” has the basic meaning of “shaken,” a violent movement like an earthquake. The shaking can be figurative, such as in Matt. 24:29, where the hosts of heaven will be deposed and all will be overturned, or more literally, as in the simile of Rev. 6:13 of figs falling from the tree when “shaken” by a strong wind. It may be worth noting that Tacitus described AD 51, around the time of this letter, as an “ominous” year filled with earthquakes. They knew what it was to be “shaken.” What is occurring in this church is not a mild questioning about how things might work out but an earthquake of theological doubt that is leaving vast destruction in its wake. Likewise, the word for being “alarmed” is the fear caused by surprise. Having begun in one direction based on the teaching of Paul while he was with them, they have been surprised by this new teaching and their fear is that of having had their foundation pulled out from underneath them. They are paralyzed, scared, uncertain what to believe and, from that, how to act.
This new teaching about the end times may not seem all that concerning to those of us who have been waiting for Christ’s return for 2000 years and have heard many explanations, but for this young congregation, this new teaching has shaken them and left each person trying to figure out how they ought to act: should they work or should they wait? Should they provide for those who aren’t working or should they make them work? Have they already been perfected, and if so, why does everything appear to be the same, themselves included? Paul does spend some time attempting to correct the teaching that had gone so clearly wrong, but the significance of this frame is that he spends more time and effort encouraging this congregation to not fear and to stand firm."
There are so many different views when discussing the end of the world events and the second coming of Christ. Pre-tribulation, Post- tribulation, A-tribulation. Post Millennial. Pre-Millennial, etc. People often think the book of Revelation is a book of fear. But the book of revelation is supposed to be a tremendous source of comfort to the believer.
We have the benefit of this book, unfortunately the early church didn’t.
But what does it mean to you that He desired us? He longed for us? What should that mean when we are talking to someone else? What a great opening line. Let me tell you about the greatest love you will ever experience!