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Thursday, September 25, 2008

1 Thessalonians 1 and 2: Week 3

This week we are tackling imitating Christ, spreading the Gospel, and beginning a discussion on Paul "the Pastor". We almost finished everything for last week's class, but we did not get to discuss the power of God's Word like we had planned. Therefore, we will begin this week's class with some housekeeping.

For anyone who is following this online, we will carry on with material from the end of 1 Thessalonians Chapter 1, and we will start chapter 2.

Imitating Christ:

Read 1 Thessalonians 1:6-10 below:

"6You became imitators of us and of the Lord; in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with the joy given by the Holy Spirit. 7And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia. 8The Lord's message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia—your faith in God has become known everywhere. Therefore we do not need to say anything about it, 9for they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us. They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath."

1) Check out the Q&A on imitation posted below. What does the word "imitation" mean to us? What did it mean to Paul?


What are ways that you can imitate Christ?

Watch the video and answer the questions below it:

How did imitating Christ, help some of the people in Paraguay? How can it help others around us?

2) Read verse 8 again. Paul says that the message rang out from Thessalonica- kind of like a bell. Click on the link below to see a picture of sound waves:


Notice how sound waves move out in all directions. How can we spread the Gospel in all directions, so that we ring out like a bell?

3) Chapter 2 covers many characteristics of a good pastor. Before you read 1 Thessalonians 2, think of what a pastor should be like. How is a pastor faithful to God's Word? In what ways should he serve the church? Etc...

4) Read 1 Thessalonians 2:1-2

1You know, brothers, that our visit to you was not a failure. 2We had previously suffered and been insulted in Philippi, as you know, but with the help of our God we dared to tell you his gospel in spite of strong opposition.

How does Paul handle criticism of his ministry?


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