Further Study: Promise to the Persecuted
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“The Bible is written by inspired men, but it is not God’s mode of thought and expression.

It is that of humanity. God, as a writer, is not represented. Men will often say such an expression is not like God. But God has not put Himself in words, in logic, in rhetoric, on trial in the Bible. The writers of the Bible were God’s penmen, not His pen. . ..

“It is not the words of the Bible that are inspired, but [...]

Inside Story: Light in the Darkness, 2
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Image © Rolf Jansson from GoodSalt.com

Nima was one of many Bhutanese who received a copy of The Great Controversy.

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He read it through several times and is sharing his discoveries about God with his family and friends in their small village in Bhutan. He meets with a small group of about 15 people in the bedroom of a house to worship. Several are preparing for baptism. And their numbers grow as Nima continues to share his faith and provide Adventist [...]

Thursday: Glorifying Christ
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Image © Janet Hyun from GoodSalt.com

Read 2 Thessalonians 1:10-12. What does it mean that Jesus Christ will be glorified in His saints?

Image © Janet Hyun from GoodSalt.com

The full sentence in this week’s text (2 Thess. 1:3-10) provides a number of important details about the second coming of Jesus. When Jesus returns, He will afflict the afflicters and provide rest for the afflicted (see 2 Thess. 1:6, 7, ESV). He will come down from heaven in the company of powerful angels (2 Thess. 1:7). He will come with flaming fire and execute justice on [...]

Wednesday: Fire and Destruction
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Image © Janet Hyun from GoodSalt.com

Read 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9.

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What is the primary reason for the destruction of the wicked at the time of Jesus’ second coming? How are we to understand these verses with the idea of God as full of love, grace, and forgiveness?

Many people are uncomfortable with the language of these verses. They feel that “pay back” (NIV), vengeance, punishment, and the infliction of suffering are unworthy of a God of love, grace, and mercy. But just punishment and retribution [...]

Tuesday: Suffering as a Sign of the End
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Second Thessalonians 1:5-10 in the Greek has an Old Testament feel (the Bible of most New Testament Christians was the Septuagint, a pre-Christian Greek translation of the Old Testament).

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Second Thessalonians exhibits many more references to the Old Testament than does 1 Thessalonians.

Read 2 Thessalonians 1:5, 6. What is Paul saying? What promises are found in there?

The word evidence (NIV) or token (KJV) means “proof” or “plain indication” of something. What does the persecution of Christians (vs. 4) prove? It is certainly not evidence of God’s [...]

Monday: Paul’s Thanksgiving
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Image © Erik Stenbakken from GoodSalt.com

Paul had a tendency toward extra-long sentences.

 

Image © Erik Stenbakken from GoodSalt.com

Second Thessalonians 1:3-10 is a single sentence focusing primarily on events surrounding the second coming of Jesus. The central core of the sentence, however, is not focused on the Second Coming (2 Thess 1:3, author’s translation): “We are obligated at all times to give thanks to God concerning you.” Paul’s comments regarding the return of Jesus (2 Thess. 1:6-10) are part of the reason he thanks God concerning them, the Thessalonians themselves.

Read 2 Thessalonians [...]

Sunday: Fresh Greetings
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“Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our

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Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thess. 1:1, 2). What hope and promise is found even in such a simple greeting as this? How much theology is in there, how much hope, how much promise? How can we learn to make these hopes and promises our own?

Paul, as he [...]

Sabbath: Promise to the Persecuted
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Read for This Week’s Study: 2 Thess. 1:1-12, John 1:18, Rom. 2:5, 12:19, Rev. 16:4-7, 20:1-6, John 14:1-3.

Memory Text: “To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power” (2 Thessalonians 1:11, ESV).

Key Thought: The second coming of Jesus is the culmination of all Christian hope.

Because written correspondence could be slow, a church that wanted to talk to Paul had to track him down and get a [...]

Further Study: Church Life
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“[As a child] Jesus carried into His labor cheerfulness and tact.

It requires much patience and spirituality to bring Bible religion into the home life and into the workshop, to bear the strain of worldly business, and yet keep the eye single to the glory of God. This is where Christ was a helper. He was never so full of worldly care as to have no time or thought for heavenly things. Often He expressed the gladness of His heart by [...]

Inside Story: Light in the Darkness, 1
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Bhutan is a small mountainous country lying on the southern slopes of the Himalayas and bordered by northeast India.

Image © Rolf Jansson from GoodSalt.com

For generations it has been cut off from the outside world. Bhutanese are nearly all Buddhist and Hindu. There are few known Christians in the country. But God has ways of opening hearts and leading seekers to Jesus.

Tepa was a monk in Bhutan, but he felt dissatisfied. One day he met a Christian couple who secretly [...]