1 and 2 Thessalonians
avatar

Contents | Email Discussion Lists | Ellen White and Bible References

When the Lord Descends from Heaven

Irish author Samuel Beckett wrote a drama, Waiting for Godot, about two homeless men waiting on the side of the road for someone named Godot who was supposed to come and save them from the meaninglessness of life.

Until he comes, life seems so miserable that they decide to hang themselves. But having no rope, one of the men takes off the cord that holds up his pants, which collapse around his ankles. Testing the cord’s strength, they pull; it breaks, and both men almost fall. They decide to find a better rope and try again later.

“We’ll hang ourselves tomorrow,” says Vladimir. “Unless Godot comes.”

“And if he comes?” asks Estragon.

“We’ll be saved.”

Godot never comes, which means they’re not saved. They weren’t, of course, supposed to be. Beckett’s whole point with the drama was to show the absurdity and hopelessness of life.

What a contrast to the view of life presented in the Bible. In particular, what a contrast to the view presented in this quarter’s lessons, which are on the apostle Paul’s two letters to the Thessalonians.

Like Beckett’s two characters, the Thessalonians faced stresses, strains, struggles, even persecution. In other words, life for them, as for us, has its hard moments. How easy and understandable it would have been for them to have fallen into the pessimism Beckett expressed. Instead, the Thessalonians had a sure hope, a hope based on Jesus.

This quarter, through Paul’s letters to the Thessalonians, we’ll get a glimpse into the life of an early Christian church—an urban church—really, and see some of the struggles and challenges that it faced, including the difficulties that arose from the fact that Christ had not yet returned! Fascinating, too, is that however different their circumstances from our own, so often the principles reflected in Paul’s words to the Thessalonians deal with the issues and challenges that we, too, confront as we await—not some mysterious Godot—but the Lord Jesus, whose death on the cross at the first coming guarantees His return in glory at the Second.

Jon Paulien is dean of the School of Religion at Loma Linda University in Loma Linda, California.

Date Topic Mobile Refs
Jul 6 The Gospel Comes to Thessalonica Mobile Less 1
Jul 13 Preserving Relationships Mobile Less 2
Jul 20 Thessalonica in Paul’s Day Mobile Less 3
Jul 27 Joyous and Thankful Mobile Less 4
Aug 3 The Apostolic Example Mobile Less 5
Aug 10 Friends Forever Mobile Less 6
Aug 17 Living Holy Lives Mobile Less 7
Aug 24 The Dead in Christ Mobile Less 8
Aug 31 Final Events Mobile Less 9
Sep 7 Church Life Mobile Less 10
Sep 14 Promise to the Persecuted Mobile Less 11
Sep 21 The Antichrist Mobile Less 12
Sep 28 Keeping the Church Faithful Mobile Less 13

Did you know that you can receive each day’s lesson via email? You may also discuss each day’s lesson with other Sabbath School lesson students on our blog.


Editorial Office: 12501 Old Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, MD 20904.

Principal Contributors:
Jon Paulien
Editor:
Clifford R. Goldstein
Associate Editor:
Soraya L. Homayouni
Publication Manager:
Lea Alexander Greve

Editorial Assistant:
Sharon Thomas-Crews
Pacific Press Coordinator:
Wendy Marcum
Art Director and Illustrator:
Lars Justinen
Concept Design:
Dever Design

Copyright © 2012 by the Office of the Adult Bible Study Guide, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventist. All Rights Reserved.


The Adult Sabbath School Bible Study Guide is prepared by the Office
of the Adult Bible Study Guide of the General Conference of Seventh-day
Adventists. The preparation of the guides is under the general
direction of the Sabbath School Publications Board, a subcommittee of
the General Conference Administrative Committee (ADCOM), publisher of
the Bible study guides. The published guide reflects the input of
worldwide evaluation committees and the approval of the Sabbath School
Publications Board and thus does not solely or necessarily represent
the intent of the author(s).

Editorial Office:
12501 Old Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, MD 20904.


Sabbath School Study References

The Lesson References (formerly called Lesson Helps) for this quarter have been prepared by Freeman Senzani. They include all related Scripture and most EGW quotations. The “New King James Version” of the Bible is used with
permission. The related Study References are linked from each lesson and a link to the whole quarter’s Helps is provided on this page.

Teacher Resources

Did you know that you can find all manner of resources for teachers on our site? We offer Teaching Outlines, Thought Starters and links to seeing and hearing the lesson online a week or two ahead of time. See our Teacher Resources page.

Share Button

Comments

1 and 2 Thessalonians — 3 Comments

  1. Amid the immoral pagan customs the Thessalonians welcomed the Word of God which has great effect in transforming lives.

    Like(0)
  2. Sunday. The preachers pay a price,
    Whichever choice of the two we make, we should be ready for the price.

    Like(0)

What do you think? If you like a comment, just [Like] it or post a thoughtful reply. Please provide a working email address and your real first AND last name to have your comment published.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.