“When My Trophies At Last I Lay Down”
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Tampa Cross

Several years ago, when I first became a literature evangelist, I was attending an awards banquet for the best sales persons in the Southwest. I was awe struck by the nice shiny plaques and trophies the winners were receiving for leading the region in sales, hours worked, and other categories. I was so impressed that … [Click to read more …]

Fishbowl Christians
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Image © Rolf Jansson from GoodSalt.com

Whether we like it or not, someone is always watching us. Have you ever thought about that? Even when you think you’re completely on your own, in a place where you think you don’t know anybody and nobody knows you, people are watching. Being a Christian only increases the number of people watching. Why do … [Click to read more …]

Wednesday: Caring Deeply (1 Thess. 2:7, 8)
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In 1 Thessalonians 2:4, Paul’s primary motivation for ministry is to please God. What additional motivation does Paul bring up in the verses that follow? See 1 Thess. 2:6-8. In today’s world, money, sex, and power are often considered the primary motivations for human behavior, at least for those consumed by self-interest. In 1 Thessalonians 2:3-6, Paul uses a … [Click to read more …]

05: The Apostalic Example – Teaching Plan
Michael Fracker

gless05 (2)

Key Thought : A desire to please God and love others will truly be an effective witness for Christ.   [Teaching plan for “The Apostolic Example” July 30, 2012] 1. Have a volunteer read I Thessalonians 2:1-3. A. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the main idea of this text is. … [Click to read more …]

Tuesday: Pleasing God (1 Thess. 2:4-6)
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Read 1 Thessalonians 2:4-6. Describe the contrast between Paul’s motivation for ministry and the worldly alternatives he mentions. Why is it not always so easy to see the differences; that is, how can people deceive themselves regarding the purity of their own motives? Why is that so easy to do? The word often translated “approved” (1 Thess. … [Click to read more …]

Monday: The Character of the Apostles (1 Thess. 2:3)
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Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

Read 1 Thessalonians 2:3. What key point is he making there about motives? It was widely known in the ancient world that there were three keys to persuading people to change their ideas or practices. People judge the power of an argument on the character of the speaker (in Greek: ethos), the quality or logic of the … [Click to read more …]

Sunday: Boldness in Suffering (1 Thess. 2:1, 2)
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Image © Janet Hyun from GoodSalt.com

Read 1 Thessalonians 2:1, 2 in light of Acts 16. What connection does Paul draw between his earlier ministry in Philippi and his ministry in Thessalonica? First Thessalonians 2:1 picks up on the themes of the first chapter. The “you yourselves know” (NKJV) of this verse recalls the same language in 1 Thessalonians 1:5. And Paul’s reference to “coming” or gaining “entrance” … [Click to read more …]

Sabbath: The Apostolic Example
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gless05 (2)

Read for This Week’s Study: 1 Thess. 2:1-12, Acts 16:1-40, Deut. 10:16, Ps. 51:1-10, 2 Cor. 8:1-5, Luke 11:11-13. Memory Text: “But just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts” (1 Thessalonians 2:4, ESV). Key Thought: By revealing what the true motive … [Click to read more …]

Further Study: Joyous and Thankful
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“The arrival of Silas and Timothy from Macedonia, during Paul’s sojourn in Corinth, had greatly cheered the apostle. They brought him ‘good tidings’ of the ‘faith and charity’ of those who had accepted the truth during the first visit of the gospel messengers to Thessalonica. Paul’s heart went out in tender sympathy toward these believers, … [Click to read more …]

Inside Story: Talking Hands
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Six children of the Jacksonville Southpoint Adventist Church in Florida wanted to share their faith with others. They attended a weekend training program for kids called “Go Fish!” and learned several fun ways to tell others about Jesus. They learned to tell stories, lead singing, and use puppets. They returned home excited about what they … [Click to read more …]