We live in a multi-faith culture where many of the people around us have very different ideas about God. Whether it is about God’s existence, the number of god(s), or God’s goodness, there always seems to be someone around who disagrees with us. Sometimes this makes us ask the question, “does it matter what I think about God?” All these people seem to be living just fine with different views about God. Maybe what I think doesn’t matter. Or maybe it matters to me, but it isn’t something I need to bring into the rest of the world.
The people in Thessalonica were confused about what to believe about God, and Paul’s response was very clear: what you believe matters! Let’s hear what Paul had to say about the role of the Thessalonian Christians in their community.
Sermon Study Questions
2 Thessalonians 2: 13-17
- Paul instructs the Thessalonians to “stand firm in the teachings” they have received. This was because the Thessalonians were listening to teachings that were not from God. Discuss teachings we hear in our culture that are not from God. What Truth does God teach to combat these false teachings?
- Paul talks about the Thessalonians as the “first-fruits”. What does it mean for you to be a “first-fruit” in your community? In what ways has God set you apart?
- Paul says God strengthens us in our good deeds and words. Think about a time when you practiced good deeds or words. In what ways did you feel strengthened?
- Paul says that God wants to encourage us and give us good hope. Look for evidence of God’s encouragement this week. Write down your experiences to share with a friend or small group next time you meet.