In my last post, we saw how the Thessalonian church pressed into a mature walk with Christ. It’s something that we need to learn in our present generation. Paul commends them for it and exhorts them to continue.
So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the teachings we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter.
2 Thessalonians 2:15
Paul tells these believers to stand firm and unmovable in the truth that they’ve received. The word translated, teachings, is a special word. It means something that’s been transmitted or passed down from one to another.
The things that they were taught were not invented by Paul. They were transmitted from God the Father to Christ, then Christ to His apostles, and finally from the apostles to the church.
The unfortunate thing is that, in many cases, we’ve either stopped teaching them or watered them down in our generation. Personally, I want to see them restored in our lifetime. That’s the goal behind this blog and my ministry.
Notice that this passage tells us that the church received this through both the spoken and written Word. This will require us to spend time in the Lord’s presence. As great as the Scripture is, we need both God’s written and spoken Word to fulfill our calling in Christ.
I like the encouragement that Paul gives at the close of this passage.
May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.
2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
We’re told that if we stand firm in the Lord’s grace, we have eternal encouragement. That’s important. It’s speaking about the work of the Holy Spirit in us.
The word, encouragement, is the same word Jesus used in calling the Holy Spirit the Comforter. In our modern terminology, it means to be a coach. If we remain in God’s presence, we have an eternal Life-Coach.
Here’s some more good news. This Coach does not only deal with your physical life, but He can coach your heart as well. I don’t know about you, but I need the internal coaching more than the outer.
Because of this, our words and our actions will be produced by an overflow of God’s grace working through us. I believe this is what the world desperately needs to see in the church.
This is what will draw people to the cross of Christ. It’s only when the Holy Spirit is active in us that the Gospel is energized to that extent. We need to get back to the pattern that was originally transmitted to the church.
Question: What differences do you see between the early church and our modern church experience?
© 2018 Nick Zaccardi